Rosie is our three year old Australian Cattle Dog -- a Blue Heeler. My parents got her as a puppy, but a few short months later she happened to meet my then-boyfriend Shane. It was love at first sight for her, and it wasn't long before we made it official. Rosie has been with us ever since, and has proved to be an energetic, observant and endlessly loving dog. She is a girl that just keeps on going, no matter how many times you threw the frisbee, how cold the snow or how long of a walk you took her on.
She has lived with our other four dogs for about two years now. We moved into our new home last year, and after the initial settle-in period, we were able to leave all the dogs out together while at work. With the assistance of a Nest Cam, we felt comfortable trusting them all together. It was therefore a complete, horrifying surprise to come home last week to find that Rosie and another of our dogs had gotten into a bloody fight that left them both wounded. The other dog made a full recovery within only a few days, but Rosie fractured her fibula and worse, suffered a gaping laceration to her abdomen. She also has sustained multiple bite wounds to her legs.
Rosie has been in and out of both our local family vet and the 24 hour emergency center since last Tuesday. We have been to visit her almost every single day -- an exhausting feat, as the care center is an hour away from our home and this is where she has spent the majority of the past week and a half.
Thus far, the bills have amounted to $7,500 (EDIT 2/8/18: $9000). We were able to temporarily defer $4,000 by signing up for CareCredit, but will need to get that paid off within 6 months to avoid paying a high interest rate. Currently the full financial extent is unknown, as she is not out of the woods yet -- at best, she will need months of bandage changes (over $200 each, every three days). Very possibly she will also need flap surgery, which has been estimated as high as $2,800. In either event, we still have no idea where the bills will end. We were very fortunate to have saved up a few thousand toward the wedding we planned to have this summer. All of that has already gone toward vet bills, and we are beginning to worry that we won't be able to afford whatever the remainder might entail.
Regarding her treatment, Rosie is handling it all very well. As of today she is in good spirits and has been eating and showing us her energetic self. We have full confidence in the ability of her doctors to sort her out, and her ability to handle the treatments without undue stress.
There is one last point we feel we must address. We rejected the idea of starting a Go Fund Me for over a week, knowing that there are those who would criticize us for being careless enough to leave the dogs alone together. To those people, we can only say that we are good dog parents, it was an honest mistake and we have taken the necessary steps to prevent it from happening again. Dog fights happen, and so long as it is in our power to help our girl come out of it strong, we will do what we can. If you do not feel comfortable donating to such a cause, we understand and only ask that you hold your criticism.
- Sofia Olaya
- Leslie Dahring
- Josh Whelchel
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