How Saving One Life Turned Into Nine

Posted by Cathy Stanley on

This photo is of Sydney and her babies - from May 12th, seven days after Sydney gave birth and five days after her middle of the night, life saving surgery from the Pyometra that almost killed her.  You can see her surgery scar. It's amazing that immediately after surgery she was back to nursing again.  She went through H-E-double hockey sticks and back and now she is sooooo happy to be finished with any more work.  It's interesting because we humans view motherhood and a bond with mother and child as something that is meant to be lifelong and close.  With mommy dogs, it is viewed more like an obligation, a job.
This whole experience for Sydney was exhausting, carrying the litter, living in who knows what kind of outdoor situation, zero vet care or grooming, years of matted hair with feces/urine coated fur and fox tails everywhere.
The odor she had to smell on herself was putrid. She was covered with hundreds HUNDREDS of fleas when we rescued her from the San Bernardino City, CA animal shelter.  Then to find out she was seven weeks pregnant, the whole situation was heartbreaking to say the least.  Then she had her eight puppies, by some miracle they all lived (and this is unusual with a large litter). At least two of them were born aspirated and our volunteers, as amateur as we all are, we tried our best to clear the airways of the puppies after they were born and much to our surprise, we didn't lose one.
Immediately after the last puppy was born, Sydney crashed from losing so much blood and we rushed her to the hospital to get iv fluids and to have the most aspirated puppy checked out by the vet. Sydney almost needed a blood transfusion that night but after fluids, her red cell count started to rise again and she was getting back to normal.
Then two days later, we almost lost Sydney to Pyometra! If we had lost this beautiful sweet perfect dog, it would have devastated every single one of our volunteers. She was rushed to the hospital again and this time she had emergency life saving surgery in the middle of the night.  We rescued Sydney on April 20th, her puppies were born on May 5th and it seems like so long ago as her puppies are growing by the day and coming into their own personalities.
Now that Sydney has finished the hard work of mommy duties, she has never EVER been happier. She is free at last of the hard work of raising puppies. She is free of the suffering and neglect she experienced with wherever she lived before. She is spoiled and fed fresh Just Food For Dogs and clean and groomed and living indoors, getting treated like every dog deserves, like a member of the family.
We are so grateful to every one of YOU that have been along with Sydney's rescue journey. Many of you have been following right from the beginning, from the day Sydney walked out of that shelter and began her fresh start at Camp Cocker Rescue.  People often say "oh you rescued a pregnant dog and puppies because that is easy and you will make lots of money".
Actually, this could not be farther from the truth. Let's not even consider the unbelievable workload that our volunteers have put in with the puppy raising these past three months. Let's not even consider the cost of endless need of supplies (wee wee pads, food, cleaning supplies, laundry soap, etc.) Many of our supporters donated these things to help us out, and many of our own volunteers bought these things out of their own pockets.
Let's just look at the medical bills and forget all of the other expenses. You might want to be seated before you read this breakdown of what Sydney's rescue has cost so far because you might have a heart attack when you process the numbers:
4/20: The first twenty four hours after her rescue, x-rays, ultrasound, sedated surgical shave down of her matts, bloodwork, ear infection, etc. $608
5/07: Her Pyometra emergency surgery and blood transfusion that happened in the middle of the night was $4,015.
6/01: She was going downhill again and not feeling well, turned out she had developed Mastitis, this vetting was $279
Then every day for the next five days, she was returning to the vet for blood work and sub-q fluids. (a little under $100 each day)
6/28: Her dental with extractions was $902
There were other minor vet visits for Sydney as well, such as getting ear infection rechecks (fox tails kept coming out of her ears, yuck!)
Needless to say, saving Sydney's life was an ENORMOUS expense for Camp Cocker Rescue and in our minds, she was worth a million times what we spent on her.  We are not a well funded rescue by any stretch of the imagination. When we saved Sydney, we had no idea what type of medical bills we would be looking at.
When we get an expensive dog or we run up a big pile of vet bills, we just have to work that much harder to ask for donations and ask all of you to help us to spread the word.
The bulk of our donor support comes in the form of $5 to $25 donations. We do get larger donations from time to time and when we get a large donation, it is amazing.  But the majority of how dogs like Sydney get their medical bills paid for are from many many many people, all donating whatever they can, no matter how small of a donation.  That is why we always tell people, if you can donate $5, it will make a difference because if a LOT of people each donate $5, it adds up.
Right now, we are in a bit of a financial hole with all of the vet bills we ran up from the new dogs we saved in the month of July. We've had to say no this week to taking in any more new dogs until we can at least get caught up on our vet debt and start with a clean slate.  This tends to happen to us about every two to three months.
We will do well for awhile, fundraising is going okay, then all of a sudden, all it takes is one or two major medical dogs and our budget for an entire month ends up getting spent in two weeks. (last month we had Sienna in the hospital for four weeks and then there was Olive with her respiratory and cardiologist visit, then Scooby and Cora with major skin/ear problems, then we lost our senior gal Greta after she was in and out of the hospital during the last week of her life, etc.)
We are trying to fundraise right now to just get caught up on the bills we ran up in July.
If you might like to make a small donation today, it would really mean so very much to the future dogs like Sydney that will need Camp Cocker to be ready for them.  Donating is super easy - DONATE RIGHT HERE!
Or we also have a raffle going on right now, for a stunning one-of-a-kind handmade quilt that one of our supporters spent nearly five months making. Every square inch of this quilt was made with love for the Camp Cocker dogs. If you might like to support our vet debt by buying some raffle tickets, here is a LINK TO BUY RAFFLE TICKETS (drawing will be held on 8/19).
However you can support our doggies, if it is donating, or buying raffle tickets or buying some items from our online store or just spreading the word to your friends . . .
- we want you to know that you are a valuable part of Camp Cocker Rescue and whatever you can do to support our dogs, it means the world to them.
Without each and every one of you, there would be no Camp Cocker Rescue.
Without Camp Cocker Rescue, where would so many of our dogs be right now? Including Sydney plus eight.
Thank you.
Thank you to each and EVERY ONE of you that believes these dogs all deserve a fresh start and a chance for a better life.
We are so very grateful to you for the lives you are helping to save.