Please help us, help you, your neighbor, or friend
Pay the Veterinarian to Heal Your Injured Pet/Family Member
Marley is a wonderful, adopted flat-coated retriever. He volunteers and assists PTSD victims, comforts children in distress, and calms everyone he meets. He is an old, loving soul.
This poor boy unexpectedly walked in a rattlesnake nest and with no warning, was bitten three times by baby rattlers and once by an adult. The babies don't rattle nor do they control the amount of venom they inject, they just inject all of their venom which makes them more toxic than an adult. Marley screamed in pain and immediately collapsed.
We were two miles from where we staying and there was no cell phone coverage. I carried 80-pound Marley about 50 yards to a shady, safe, dried up river bed where I tied him and my 8-month old rescued puppy, Daia, to a tree. I ran back to the Subaru Forester and we navigated our way over the rocky, rough road to pick up Marley and Daia.
It was Sunday, so I called a vet who had been highly recommended to me for other services. I asked him if he could help Marley and if time was a factor since we were an hour from his office. He said he could help Marley and that time wasn't an issue.
Hurriedly, we drove to his office then waited another 45 minutes until he arrived. Marley was in excruciating pain even though I'd given him 200mg of Tramadol. When the vet arrived, he looked at Marley's leg, x-rayed it to make sure it wasn't broken, then sent us home with more tramadol and some antibiotics. The vet said that Marley might lose his leg and that the next three to five days would be the most painful.
I called the vet after one day and told him Marley was suffering terribly, but he told me that we would have to wait it out. I was spoon-feeding Marley water, as I helplessly watch the magnificent guy writhe and cry in pain. His skin and soft tissue were dissolving as the venom surged through his body.
Another day passed and Marley was going downhill quickly and in deepening, horrible pain. The venom and destruction spread across his chest, down his other leg, and extended into his stomach and diaphragm cavity. His desire to live was waning as he became more delirious. It was intolerable, so a friend suggested I call her vet - a compassionate, experienced, terrific vet for a second opinion. I took him in where they immediately put him on IV morphine, fluids and antibiotics.
The first 24 hours were nip and tuck. Marley lay in near unconsciousness as the pain started diminishing. Slowly, he began to recover.
Nearly a week after he was bitten, he was released to go home. They bandaged his leg to protect the decayed skin and tissue, and sent him home with more IV’s. A month later, the final bandages were removed. Marley has fully recovered thanks to a loving, competent veterinarian, his staff, and three equally concerned friends who helped pay his medical bills.
In hindsight, I realize that the first vet had sent Marley home to die a horrible, painful death. Even if he'd survived the first week - which he wouldn't have - his kidneys would have failed within a month. This vet didn't give me the options: 1. Put Marley down so he wouldn't be in pain, 2. Do what we did and hope, or 3. Get the proper medical care the incredible boy deserved, saving his life, his leg and his kidneys. I will take action against the inhumane veterinarian. Who knows how many other pets this vet has put through this unconscionable ordeal.
But, it took a village to raise a Marley. Veterinarians simply aren't in the money-loaning business, and their out-of-pocket costs for this type of care is substantial.
I don’t think this terrific vet would have doctored Marley because I couldn't guarantee immediate payment. But we were lucky. My friend/guardian angel said she'd guarantee the payment.
What did I learn?
Many of us can't afford thousands of dollars in unexpected emergency vet bills, and thus, we may not even be able to get the emergency care our pet deserves!
Without significant cash or credit, what are the options?
Get rid of our beloved pet/family member?
Put our pet to sleep?
Go to the vet but minimize the treatment and costs - jeopardizing our pet's safety, well-being and recovery?
Don't have him/her doctored at all, and hope for the best? or,
Suffer significant personal/familial financial hardship while tending to our pet's needs?
THE MARLEY FOUNDATION WANTS TO HELP
We are setting up the Marley Foundation to help those animals and families in need. This initial fundraiser will form the Foundation, file the tax-exempt paperwork with the IRS, and launch a professional website. Our goal is to raise $300,000 each year and give away 90% of it to needy animals. No foundation salaries. No fluff.