My Peanut Puppy - IMHA Journey

Aloha Everyone,

Peanut came into my life less than 6 months ago.  He has taught me so much already - patience, acceptance, perseverance and unconditional love.  Last week he became suddenly ill - as a puppy I didn't think it could be anything too serious.  Routine blood tests didn't show any reason for alarm, even though he was extremely lethargic and collapsing when he stood up too fast.  By the time I got him to the emergency vet, I discovered his red blood cell count was at 17% and dropping, and he needed to be put on oxygen and given a blood transfusion to prevent cardiac arrest.  In less than 24 hours my world was flipped upside down. 

Peanut has been diagnosed was immune-mediated hemolytic anemia (IMHA), a disease I had never even heard of before.  On average, most animals acquire it around 6 years old, but for some reason my Peanut puppy was not lucky.  The causes of IMHA are greatly unknown but can possibly be linked to routine vaccines.  The same vaccines that pet parents are told can help their pets! 

My loving, friendly pup that has served as my therapy dog, helping me cope with anxiety, is now slowly slipping away.  Peanut is loved by many, as he goes everywhere with me - whether it's coming to work and playing with the kids at my afterschool program that I direct, or being a #1 Fan in the stands of basketball, football and kickball games!  This is a pup that comes to work with me everyday and hasn't been away from me for more than a few hours - and now he's been in the hospital for 4 days and I'm not sure when he'll be released.  It's hard to say how many more transfusions he will need and he will likely need long-term steroid care to overcome IMHA. 

As a person with a limited budget and what I thought was a healthy pup, I wasn't focused on getting health insurance any time soon.  Now I'm faced with the grim reality that my savings is quickly diminishing and I don't even have all the results back to determine if there was any reason we can pinpoint for his IMHA.  I can't imagine giving up on a pup that is so young and has so many more lives to touch.  My hope is that with support from others, I can focus completely on his recovery and well-being, and not stress out about the financial costs associated with his care.

I know some may think that he's "just a dog," but to me he's so much more than that.  I still have so much to learn from Peanut and I hope with support he can pull through this scary thing called IMHA. 

Thank you so much for even taking the time to learn more about my Peanut!

Sincerely,
Natalie

For more info on IMHA:
http://www.petmd.com/dog/conditions/cardiovascular/c_dg_anemia_immune_mediated

Donations

  • Anonymous 
    • $200 (Offline)
    • 49 mos
  • Pamela Lee 
    • $50 
    • 50 mos
  • Shelley Sato 
    • $25 
    • 50 mos
  • Michael Harris 
    • $25 
    • 50 mos
  • Angela Agustin  
    • $20 
    • 50 mos
See all

Organizer

Natalie Anne 
Organizer
Honolulu, HI
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