Sofie's Cataract Surgery

Hello everyone. It has been a tough couple months for us. First, Sofie was diagnosed with diabetes on February 17th, 2018, she had lost 7 of 35 lbs in a matter of a couple weeks, she wasn't eating, throwing up what she did eat, drinking constantly and having accidents, which was very unusual for her.  After a couple days of throwing up, we took her to the vet and found out she has Type 1 Diabetes, which requires insulin shots every 12 hours.  The vet assured us it was diagnosed early enough that no other damage was done, like UTI's or cataracts. Apparently, with diabetic dogs, it is only a matter of time before the pup will develop cataracts and go blind, sometimes over night. March 31st we had a playful, happy, seeing dog. April 1st, life's cruel joke, we woke up with a completely blind dog. The following vet visit revealed fully matured cataracts in both eyes and 100% blindness, along with the onset of clinical depression. Sofie will live another 7 healthy years, we hope, but not if she can't see. I can tell how negatively this is affecting her and how sad and confused she is. It breaks my heart watching her walk into walls and furniture. 

It took a lot of courage to swallow my pride, start this page, and ask for help, but I realize I cannot afford this on my own. The problem is, Sofie will need surgery regardless: either a surgery to remove her eyes, or a surgery to fix her eyes. In diabetic dogs, it is not a matter of IF the cataract will go hypermature, but WHEN. I will not go into details here but I will add links below for more info. Basically, she WILL develop glaucoma, be in a lot of pain, and the only cure for glaucoma for dogs is complete removal of eyes. She will also be in a lot of pain due to eye pressure and inflammation. I would rather try to fix her eyes, than wait until she's in pain and have them removed. If you were, let's say 60 or so, and woke up blind one day but were told that it could be fixed, even though you had only like 20 years left to live, wouldn't you want to be able to see for the remainder of your life? I know, I know it's not the same thing, but I have to try to make this better for her. Sofie and I have a special bond, she is the best and sweetest little creature and has brought me and everyone around her so much joy, I have to do everything in my power to get her help. 

I have already spent a lot of money on countless vet visits, insulin, syringes, and there is more to come. Her first visit with the ophthalmology clinic will be $150, if they decide to do the ERG and Ultrasound then, it's another $250 per test. The surgery and the first follow up visit, as well as pre-op meds and tests, are included in the $4200 price of the procedure. She will also need prescription anti-inflammatory eye drops before the procedure, and the post-op meds which will be around $200+. We will have follow-up visits after 2 weeks (included), 4 weeks, 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, and then every 6 months. I am NOT accounting or asking for the gas involved in driving to Columbus. Yes, Pit to Columbus, because the local clinic wants to charge $1100 for her first visit of consultation and ERG only, $4600 for the procedure, which does not include the price of follow-ups, and also they were very rude and unhelpful over the phone and wouldn't give me any information until they see Sofie. The Ohio University Vet Hospital gave me absolutely all the details over the phone and were extremely sympathetic, the vet tech answered all my questions and was very patient. They are cheaper and have more success stories and I would rather drive 3.5 hours to make sure my baby girl is better taken care of. Regardless, I am setting up the page for the full amount, hoping to get half way there. Her consultation at OUVH is on April 24th and we are hoping to schedule the procedure for mid-May.  

I don't think I have to mention how grateful we will be for everyone's help, if you are able to help financially, and for your prayers. Sofie means the world to us and we want to help her the best we can. My little girl has already been through a lot. She has also helped me through tough times by always putting a smile on my face. I believe I am in a better place because of her as I have always made it a point to make sure she is safe and taken care of, which in turn has put me in better and safer environments. I also try to help others whenever I can, by volunteering and donating, and participating in fundraising events through work and outside of work. Now we need your help. Please help my little girl if you are able.

Sofie is a big supporter of the Pittsburgh Penguins and silliness. 29084568_15235588730_r.jpeg

Thank you in advance. 

Sincerely, 
Sofie, Dasha, Joe, and Leo.

Informational links on diabetes and blindness in dogs:

http://www.marvistavet.com/cataracts-and-the-diabetic-dog.pml

http://animaleyecare.net/diseases/cataractsblindenssdiabeticdogs/

https://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2012/01/10/cataracts-can-cause-pets-blindness.aspx

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Organizer

Dasha Hazel Verkhovynets 
Organizer
Pittsburgh, PA
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