Bodie's Story - Intervertebral Disk Disease (IVDD) in Dogs

Bodie's First Day Home

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Nearly three years ago, I adopted Bodie. I was hoping to give him the best life possible after I found out what the first part of his life had been like.
He was born into a hoarding situation, in which he lived for two years. His life was one of filth and squalor, and he lived off of Oreo cookies that had been thrown into the yard for all of the dogs to fight over. When the property was investigated, they found he trusted only the dogs in his pack. From there, he was taken to a non-profit rescue organization, deemed healthy and adoptable, and subsequently placed in a foster home for a year. However, no one wanted him because he was fearful, anxious, and timid, and to make the matter worse, the children in that family didn't like Bodie. They teased him mercilessly, and wanted him gone. When I overheard that on my visit, I decided right then that I was taking him, regardless of his issues. 
Bodie has made great strides since the day he became part of the family. He was a constant gentle companion to his brother, Bishop, in the final months before Bishop's death. And although he is still a bit anxious around others who visit the house, with lots of love and some training he has learned to trust that no one will hurt him, and therefore will allow people to be close to him. 
Over time, Bodie quickly became adjusted to his new lifestyle with me. Some of his favorite activities are camping, fishing, going to the dog park, and hanging out at Dog Beach! He's so wanting to return to the activities that make him most happy!
Please scroll below to read about Bodie's injury, and the costs associated with it. If you would like to help Bodie, please feel free to make a donation. Each dollar you donate will be spent solely on Bodie's ongoing medical care! Any amount is so very greatly appreciated! Bodie and I promise that your kindness will be paid forward!!
Paypal is available for your convenience. 

This donation will help Bodie with his ongoing care and recovery from surgery for a ruptured disk in his back.

On November 10, 2012, we went out for the evening, and when we left, Bodie was, for all intents and purposes, fine. We got home about six hours later and found Bodie unable to walk correctly. He hobbled around in a squatting position and wagged his tail. As I attempted to help him, he did not yelp, cry or howl upon my touch. We immediately rushed him to the Doggie ER.
At first sight, the veterinarian on duty said he was sure it was a ruptured, bulging or degenerating disc in his back, which needed to be confirmed by a MRI.  The news was not good. It was a rupture into the spinal canal with compression of the spinal cord, and there were two options: surgery or Euthanasia.  I told them there was only one option, so surgery was scheduled for November 12. This dog is my family. He's not something I will just toss aside because the cost is only a few hundred dollars as opposed to hundreds or thousands more to give him his life back!
 The initial quote for this surgery was $4500 with a 4-day stay in the hospital, but nothing has ever been easy for Bodie.  He developed a fever post-op, and his original release date of November 15 had become conditional--if the fever broke, then he could go home 24 hours later. Tests were run, but after several, and hundreds of dollars more, a definitive result could not be found.  The fever finally broke Saturday afternoon, November 17.  After having to wait those mandatory 24 hours, he was released Monday, November 19.  The grand total of the procedure and all associated with it during that stay was a whopping $8300, which not only was far above the initial quote, but a difficult thing to deal with financially, no matter how good of a job you have! 
As part of his ongoing treatment and care, Bodie needed/will need potty pads, baby wipes, a large crate, an orthopedic mattress pad, 3-7 different medications, vitamins, check-up visits, and electro-acupuncture to stimulate and regenerate the nerves in his back and rear legs (the latter being extemely promising, but  costly), and possibly a cart. Costs are quickly rising, and to be quite honest, it's rather unsettling to know there may not be a cap on it anytime soon. 
I'm sure you may have questions such as, "Why didn't you just put him down?" He's my family, that's why! I have a responsibility to him to provide him the best possible. There is no other reason. You have human children; mine happens to have four legs and fur. Or you say, "Why don't you have pet insurance?" Many pet insurances do not pay for 90% of what may happen to your dog, and in my case, I had purchased it, but this happened during the waiting period, so no go.
 If only insurance had kicked in. To date, costs total $10,800.

Bodie playing at the lake, August 2012

"I caught a fish Dad!", August 2012

"I love camping!"

Dad and his first mate, Sept 2012, Big Bear Lake

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Friday, February 22, 2013

Urinary Tract Infection
Dr. Woods called this morning to alert me of a urinary tract infection for Bodie.  Antibiotics have been started.  His urine also has e.coli in it.  That is going to be a little tougher to solve.  Good thing I was paying attention and caught the UTI before it got into his kidneys.  Have to go back for a retest of urine soon.
1:08 pm est

Saturday, February 2, 2013

More therapy
Bodie had his last electroacupuncture therapy.  There hasn't been the improvement we were hoping for.  He's due for his vaccinations so we learned something new.  The vets don't like to over vaccinate against parvo and distemper.  So instead they took a titer and called that he is still vaccinated and good for a year.  He's also due for rabies vaccine so he has to get the mercury free vaccine.  Yes, there is mercury in normal vaccines.  Makes yoiu wonder why dogs are getting cancer more frequently!
4:05 pm est

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First Electroacupuncture Session, Nov. 30, 2012
Machine doing nerve stimulation