February 25, 2010

Our $3000 "free" puppy...

So a few years ago we wanted a dog (ok, it was me). No gerbil, hamster, or guinea pig can compete when you've grown up with a dog. So we wnt to the humane society looking for a cute, little, white terrier kind of thing and we wound up with a puppy that grew up into a 60 pound lab/border collie. But I digress....

He was practically free. A week after we had him home he started vomiting and quickly became lethargic. We took him to the emergency vet where he was diagnosed with parvo virus, which has no treatment except supportive care, and is nearly always fatal. He spent 4 days in the puppy ICU at a cost of $2000, but he survived.

Things were going along pretty well, until January. He was running through the yard in the snow, and suddenly yelped. He would not put weight on his foot, so we treated it with RICE for a day to see if it would get better. It did not. A visit to the vet confirmed my suspicion of a torn ACL. The best option for a young dog like him was surgery to replace the torn ligament for a cost of about $1500.

So most of the month has been spent trying to keep him quiet and healing after the surgery. And did I mention, that 30% of dogs who have torn one ACL usually tear the other one within a year? 

Nothing is ever free. Good thing he's cute.

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