Photo Album of our Ares.
Family and Friends,
We recently received some terrible news. Ares has a degenerative back condition called Lumbosacral Stenosis. The condition is a very painful condition in large breed dogs that affects the spinal cord and the nerves around the area where the spinal column meets the pelvis. The bone is growing in a way that is putting pressure on the spinal cord. It is causing him a lot of pain and limited mobility in his hind legs. He is currently on pain medication and anti-inflammatory medication, which is helping him get around, but it is only a temporary solution. Before the pain medication, we had to carry him outside to go potty (which is no small feat for a 79 lb. pup). He needs surgery, badly. The condition will only get worse, the surgery will get more complicated, and the pain will grow too great to manage with medication, and he will be euthanized. I am not prepared to see that happen. He is 6 years old, and still full of life and energy.
I raised Ares from a puppy; I found an ad on craigslist for some puppies on a farm in Cleveland, TN. The picture on the ad showed him chilling under a tractor, and I knew that cool dude was the dog for me. I gave the lady 20 bucks, brought him to my apartment in Kennesaw, treated his fleas and intestinal parasites (yuck), and my roommate, friends, family and I came together to take care of this new life and trained him up to be a great dog. He has been a part in many people’s lives, and all of those people have been a positive part of my life and Ares’ life. Now Ares lives with my wife and I and this news was absolutely crushing for the both of us. He has grown to be a very large part of our lives, he is our child.
To all of you who have met him, you all know what a loving and sweet dog he is. To those of you who haven't had the pleasure to spend time with him, you can take my word for it. He is friendly to EVERYONE; he has a huge heart for any living thing (except maybe the squirrels). We constantly joke that he'd be there to greet the burglar who is trying to steal the TV.
He is my best friend and it hurts my spirit to see him in such pain. Amber and I are exhausting every option we can think of to get him taken care of, but this could not have happened at a worse time. We just got married, went on our honeymoon, bought a house, and are still carrying some of the financial burden that accompanies those things. I don't like asking for money, it's not in my nature to do it, but there are times in life where we have to suck it up, put our pride away, and ask for help. This is one of those times.
If Amber, Ares, or I have been a positive part of your life, we are pleading for your assistance. The details of our costs are still a bit uncertain, and I will be updating the total goal as we shop around for providers and get more solid numbers. What his primary care vet has told us is that he will need an orthopedic specialist as his surgeon and that a specialist likely will not perform the operation without extensive imaging, including an MRI and/or a CT scan. The MRI will run about $1500 and a CT scan runs about $1000. The operation typically costs between $2000 and $5000 depending upon the severity. I am estimating that since we caught it somewhat early in his life, that the procedure cost will be on the lower end of the scale. I have set the initial goal at $6000 which is based upon him requiring both imaging services, the procedure being on the lower end of the cost spectrum, the follow up care and medication, and the fees for using the gofundme.com web service. This is an ambitious goal, but I really believe it can be done. If there is any money left over, I will be distributing it back based upon your donation percentage of the total amount raised. I’m not going to pocket a dime.
If you can contribute anything, please do. In these situations, every little bit helps. I know money is tight for everyone these days; it’s tight for us as well. The leftover cost that doesn’t get raised by this rally cry will fall on our shoulders. We just want to do everything we can to help make that cost more manageable for our current financial situation. This surgery is permanent, it will stop the degeneration of the condition forever and he will be pain-free again. We love him, we love all of you. If you can’t contribute personally, share the word with anyone who will listen, have them share the word to anyone who will listen and so on. I know we can get him taken care of together.
Nick, Amber, and Ares
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