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ushope777
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12 October 2012 - 4:39pm

I Made a WISH at Wish Upon A Hero (WUAH)

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Hello CL Friends!

As some of you know, my precious Otis, who is my 12-year old miniature dachshund, has a mass that is "highly suggestive of cancer."

After much deep thought and discussion, my sons and I have decided to go ahead and proceed with the surgery. This is a fast growing mass on his anal gland, and the thought of leaving this inside our furbaby to grow and interfere with his qualify of life is something that makes us more upset than the idea of surgery.

Otis has a guardian angel who will put the cost of the surgery on her CC and let us pay this back. However, being on unemployment right now (with a teaching license and Master's degree), we barely have enough for rent and bills. In addition, there are associated costs that may not be covered, such as the blood profile and possible chest Xrays.

I am also looking into any agencies who might possibly help us, so I am spreading out my fund raising all over the place. However, I didn't think it would hurt to post my wish here, so I wrote to CL-Ed, and I was given permission to post the link to my wish here. If you do not want to sign up and donate through WUAH, you can contact me directly for my paypal address or other form of donation if you do not have paypal.

I do NOT want anyone who cannot afford to donate to donate, and I do not want people to feel obligated in ANY way. I am just getting the news out as many places as I can. Please know that your positive thoughts and prayers and "doing what you do" mean as much to my family as a monetary donation.

This is a very fast growing mass, so time is very important.

Here is the link to my wish:

http://www.wishuponahero.com/wishes/?id=1290579#comments

Here is a link to learn more about anal gland cancer in dogs (and we will not know for sure if it is cancer until the mass is removed and tested, but again, due to the high calcium in Otis' blood, those results are "highly suggestive" of cancer.

http://www.acvs.org/AnimalOwners/HealthConditions/SmallAnimalTopics/Anal...

PLEASE feel free to PM me with questions.

I have changed my avatar so you can all see what Otis looks like. He is my first, my one and only dog as an adult, and he is the joy of our lives.

The vet said she would tell me if he was NOT a good candidate for surgery, then called him "a trooper." Smile

Thank you to everyone who reads this message.

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
Shawshank Redemption

usLuckyMe
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12 October 2012 - 5:20pm
#1

Hope, do you have a favorite story about Otis that you can share? It will help people get to know about Otis. I have always enjoyed hearing about his endeavors.

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12 October 2012 - 6:04pm
#2

Lol, of course I could go on forever with Otis stories. Maybe I can find my blog on My Space when I wrote about his back surgery and copy and paste it here. Of course, I have other stories, too. That is a great idea. I will have to think about this, because I am also pressed for time this week end and all week, but I will do my best! Smile

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
Shawshank Redemption

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12 October 2012 - 6:18pm
#3

From my MySpace blog, when Otis was nominated for "dachshund of the month." This gives a little history of what Otis went through in the past and how much he means to us. Smile I am never on MySpace anymore. There is also a video of Otis on MySpace that I wish I could somehow copy to You Tube. Middle son made it, and put it to the tune of "You Ain't Nothing but a Hound Dog." lol Most of my friends on MySpace are dachshunds, lol.

OTIS IS MY HERO

Otis will always be my hero, a hero to my family, and an inspiration to all those who know him, love him and care about him.

Otis came to me, a 3.5 pound little black and tan, from a very reputable breeder shortly after Mother's Day of 2000. He is my first dachshund as an adult and is what I have called, My mid-life crisis baby." He is now my Million Dollar Baby which I certainly did not expect. I chose a dachshund because I grew up with them, and believed he would be an easy, low maintenance kind of guy!

All went well until Otis turned 5 years of age. There had been a hint of a back problem in the past, but this was when we were staying in a strange house for two months after our house fire and we did not have a confirmed diagnosis. In September of 2005, I came home from a dear friend's memorial service and Otis was just shaking in pain. I rushed him to the emergency vets and our worst fears were confirmed. We followed up with a visit to his regular vet. He was immediately placed on crate rest and steroids. From there, everything happened so fast. Otis did not respond to the meds, and was quickly losing function of his back legs. I didn't have time to ask anyone for help. I knew I could not afford a surgery. I also knew that I was not ready to let Otis go. He deserved to have chance as much as any other. I could NOT even think of letting him go.

I tried to contact a few places for help. I emailed the Disabled Dachshund Society even though, sadly, their web page stated they were out of funds. I never heard a word back from them. In desperation, I called a woman who I had worked with the previous year and asked her to cosign for Care Credit. To my surprise, she agreed right away. I didn't have time to worry about the fact that as a single mother and teacher I really couldn't afford this. All that was on my mind was saving Otis. I brought Otis down to the University of Minnesota. We were sent all the way back home because he still had what they called "deep pain."

Twelve hours later, it was clear that Otis did not have deep pain and back we went again. It was Labor day night and I was starting a new job the very next day. I drove home, crying and all alone, at about 10 o'clock p.m. Otis was admitted to surgery at midnight. Needless to say , I did not sleep that night. I slept with Otis's photo next to my bed and looked at it often. My bed seemed so very empty. It was the first time we were away from one another at night time.

The next morning I received the miracle call at work. The excited nurse got on the line. He said, "Otis is walking!" Back then, I did not even realize the significance of that call. I just assumed that of course, Otis would be walking! He just had surgery didn't he?" Only later I realized that it was a miracle. I visited Otis and held him on my lap and talked to him. He was pretty doped up, and it was the hardest thing I ever did to leave him, promising him that I would be back the next night to bring him home with me.

Otis came home to six weeks of "crate" rest but he fought his crate. I worried he would injure himself so I put him in a porta crib. Three days later our "little Houdini" chewed a hole in the netting of the crib and jumped out when my son was in the shower. Thank God he was home. Otis continued to progress. We started out with very short walks and worked our way up and he was good as new in no time at all. His staples came out, his hair grew back. The surgeon and his regular vets all said that they had never seen a dachshund do so well after the surgery. That was my little "bad ass!" (as my son's friend called him, lol) That is my little survivor. He was just one more example of these courageous little dachsies and a symbol of all that they go through.

This June, right as the school year ended, Otis went down again. I couldn't believe it was happening. I was in total and utter despair. I am STILL over one year later paying on his surgery. I knew I could not afford another and I also knew that I could not be faced with the decision to let him go. I felt as if I had no where to turn. I was desperate when I went on a Dachshund Board that I was a part of when he was a puppy. I posted on there asking WHAT DO I DO? I immediately received so much great advice and also was told to go to www.Dodgerslist. com for resources and to ask more questions. Dodger was a dachshund that was not as lucky as Otis. Not as fortunate as Elmo. His owner didn't know better, and did not have the support of a community like a dachsie board, or a place like Doxie World, and had Dodger put down,. He realized only later that he would've had other options but it was too late. That is how Dodger's list began. To save even one dachsie from going the way of Dodger just because "we don't know any better."

Well, the first six weeks of my summer vacation was quite an ordeal, let me tell you! It was even worse for my poor Otis. The first indication of a back problem was the day I walked through the door and Otis just walked over to me ever so slowly barely wagging his tale vs. running to me with his whole body wiggling, and slathering me with wet kisses. I knew immediately that he was in pain and also suspected his back right away. My worst fears were confirmed as he quickly lost function of his back legs. I called the vet and the story is so long, please forgive me, I will try to make this part short. At first, Otis was in intense pain. I knew in a way, this was a good sign, but it was so hard to see him like this. We got him back on the steroids, and a muscle relaxer and a pain med. He reacted to the pain med, all it did was make him anxious and pant continuously. It broke my heart to see him like this. It took three days to get the pain under control. It took a higher dose of steroids and a switch of the pain med. Then the stomach problems started. My mom came to visit the week end that Otis reacted to his meds. He could not control his bowels, and also began bleeding. It was the worst thing I have ever been through, wiping the blood from his bottom (sorry, but this is the way it was) and seeing him deteriorate in front of my eyes. We even tried having him wear diapers, which were donated by a friend.

My mom said that if she hadn't seen for herself what we were going through she would've never been able to really imagine it. My washer went for a week straight, washing his soiled blankets around the clock. I was up every night for a week and felt the sleep deprivation of having a newborn baby in the house. I was not going to give up on Otis. I spent every day taking him out on the front lawn in his crate, getting him to eat, giving meds to settle his stomach, giving him pedialite that I would have to freeze like a Popsicle to get him to eat it. His stomach settled with Pepcid AC and another prescription from the vet.

I dedicated that first six weeks of summer to Otis and helping him get better again. Well, miracle of all, we got the stomach issues under control and he began to improve. He had a series of Adequan shots to help his back (2x a week for 4 weeks) and he began walking, yet again. We were strict on the crate rest even as he improved. We went through three whole boiled chickens as he was living on chicken, rice, and vitamins.

I had the love and support of everyone on the Dachshund board, and shortly after Otis's recovery I met Elmo's mom, Lawra. ( A person who rescues on MySpace and Elmo also had back issues). We started talking, because as you can see we had something in common - our babies and their courage and bravery and we had both witnessed the spirit of the dachshund.

Today, our family suffers a great deal financially, and we are still paying for the surgery (high interest) from over a year ago. He is still getting his adequan shots and has other high needs. I teach Special Education children, but I am also training for a second job and have applied for a third. My only fear is that I will lose the job that is my career (teacher) if I take on too much, but I know I must. I am trying because I will never give up on Otis and I put his health and welfare first. I have been criticized by this from my own family. They have been very hurtful in the things they have said about my love for Otis, only other dachsie lovers can truly understand why I do this. After our fire, they suggested that I give him away and get an apartment that I could afford (because the apartment wouldn't' take pets). They told me that I needed to think about myself and my family without regard to Otis. They have suggested many times that I should have let him go when he had his medical problems and I asked them to please NEVER say that to me again because I won't even go there with them. It just hurts too much.

Otis is our Hero. He brings pleasure to our life that far outweighs what we have given him. His unconditional love for us is not something we take lightly. He is not disposable, he is a true part of our family. People have rallied around us and given us the support and confirmation that we are doing the right thing. I know in my heart that God blesses those who help 'the least of these" even if it is not right at that minute. I guess my beliefs are just different from those who don't understand, who do not realize "dogs really are the new people," and view a dog as "just a dog." I know anyone who owns a dachshund will understand. And that is why I call you all friends and also thank you for being our friends!

Otis is My Hero

Otis is my hero,
My little Houdini,
My clown.

He cheers me up
So I can never stay
Down.

He has given us more
Than we can ever
Give back.
I don't want Otis
To ever lack.

His love is pure, loyal, true..
I wish you could meet him
You'd love him, too!

He's our pal and the
Joy of our life.
He has courage and
Has braved
Way too much strife
For his young life.

I would do anything for my little guy
He deserves to be called hero,
Now don't you see why?

Otis is our true survivor and our "million dollar baby." He has had very high needs that has made things difficult for our family. Even though I would not change a thing, we have struggled in order to take care of him. This has also helped to change my decision regarding having more than one dachshund (which I would love! - maybe someday…). I want to be able to take the best possible care of Otis so my head has to overrule my heart on this one!

I am very loyal to the breed - I grew up with dachshunds, Otis is my first as an adult. He is SO loved. Otis had his first surgery over one year ago at the University of Minnesota. We are still trying to pay for it, and if you read my blog you will see how things happened so very fast the first time he went down. Otis was a miracle boy and walked the very next morning! Otis had another episode in June that sent me into despair and worry. He proved to us again, that he is so tough, and he made another complete recovery, this time with rest, meds, and Adequan shots. I still worry about paying all his bills and also for the future, but we take one day at a time. That is all we can do!

One thing I hope to accomplish by Otis being the Hero of the Month is to help bring awareness to all dachsie owners. It is my hope that everyone will take preventative measures in regards to their beloved dachshunds' backs and take the time to educate themselves in regards to Dachshund IVDD. No matter how "reputable" a breeder, or what you may have been told about your dachsie, we have to get rid of the attitude that "it will never happen to us." Otis opened my eyes to this horrible disease that will strike one out of four of our dachsies and we found out the hard way that it CAN happen, even in the best of circumstances.

Thank you for reading our story.

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
Shawshank Redemption

ushope777
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12 October 2012 - 6:24pm
#4

I just re-watched this on MySpace, lol. Such bittersweet feelings. I have the brick in the gut today, as my brother calls it. Too much worry and anxiety about EVERYTHING, and especially about our Otis. Sad

http://www.myspace.com/fritofeet/videos

See how he SMILES when he gets a belly rub. And the end he has the famous dachshund L@@K. lol! Smile

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
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13 October 2012 - 6:53am
#5

Hope, I enjoyed hearing about Otis. We watched the video and had to laugh.

People say hurtful things even when they don't mean to I think. Not all people feel like pets are "one of the family." To some people dogs are just dogs. Sad

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13 October 2012 - 2:51pm
#6

Thanks for watching the video and reading the blog. Otis "smiles" when he gets a belly rub, and you can see that on the video. lol

My family has really come around since I wrote that blog, and some who I said those things about are now huge Otis fans. Smile I think they finally came to realize how much he means to me and to my sons, too.

Otis was chosen for the "hero of the month" on MySpace Dachsie World and that was my nomination blog. lol

Seems like so many years ago now.

Still struggling with our decision, reading, and researching. I just hope we are doing the right thing, as you know.

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
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13 October 2012 - 2:55pm
#7

At the beginning of the video, you can also see cushions all over the place. That is because we propped the couch cushions to prevent Otis from jumping (preventative for his back) and also removed one so he could get up on the blanket without jumping. Our house was always "Otis proof." lol

My middle son actually made that video when I wasn't home and surprised me with it. Smile

Hope777

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13 October 2012 - 3:29pm
#8

So Hope, I went to that site and I think I made a donation. It didn't really confirm after I input my info so I don't know if it went thru. Let me know. It was small but every bit helps. Prayers for you and Otis.
"Inch by inch life is a sinch; yard by yard life seems hard"

good luck

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13 October 2012 - 4:18pm
#9

LuckyWalker, I totally AGREE that every little bit counts. A dollar is JUST as appreciated as a larger donation is, and like I said, even those positive thoughts coming Otis's way are appreciated. If many gave just one dollar, these things add up!

I do not see any place where a donation was made. There is still only the first donation when I first put the wish up for the 20 dollars. The offers should be in my "accept an offer" section, and there is nothing there, so I am thinking something did not work out or go through.

Let's give it some time, and I will keep you updated, because I don't want you to donate twice, lol. I DO believe the donations show up immediately, though, and yours did not. Still, just to be safe we will give it a little more time, k? I will keep you posted.

Thank you so much for thinking of us and for your generosity and kind words.

And we ARE living "one moment at a time" these days. There is a lot on our plates right now, in addition to Otis's issues. When it rains it pours, but i am trying very hard to keep positive thoughts flowing. Smile

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
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13 October 2012 - 11:02pm
#10

Well positive energy to you Hope and I will check my card out to see if it went thru if not I will do it again.

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14 October 2012 - 1:15am
#11
luckywalker wrote:

Well positive energy to you Hope and I will check my card out to see if it went thru if not I will do it again.

Thank you so much, LW. I will also check on the wish and update you if something shows up. I really appreciate your support and positive energy. Smile

Hope777

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14 October 2012 - 3:38am
#12
luckywalker wrote:

Well positive energy to you Hope and I will check my card out to see if it went thru if not I will do it again.

Still no offer showing up. What usually happens is it shows up right away as an "offer," and i have to go in and "approve' the offer. There is only the one offer in there, that I accepted, about five days ago, so I am thinking yours did not go through. Just "FYI." Smile And thanks AGAIN! Smile

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
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14 October 2012 - 3:45am
#13

My brother and his family just offered to put up 200 dollars toward chest X-rays to rule out any metastasizing to the lungs. That is the very least we could afford, and the vet did recommend that, at the least, since she knows we cannot afford the scan. I am touched beyond words. This is a family that does not have pets, and my brother has really "warmed" to Otis in the past few years. I guess Otis grow on everyone. lol

I did warn him this may not tell us anything, but he said to still go ahead.

I just wanted to share the good news.

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
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14 October 2012 - 1:59pm
#14

Well that is very admirable of your brother, Hope. Its nice when the family comes together when one of their own is in need. I am going to that site again to figure out what the glitch is. sent them an email in the wee hours last night so I will see if they responded.

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14 October 2012 - 2:10pm
#15

I know double post but hey I did get it to work was inputting wrong. didn't see the space for verification code Confused Cool I must be blonde lol . did get a confirm so you should be able to accept now Thumb Up

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14 October 2012 - 10:51pm
#16

I saw that the donation posted and I didn't sign in to do it so it was as a guest!

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14 October 2012 - 11:35pm
#17
luckywalker wrote:

I saw that the donation posted and I didn't sign in to do it so it was as a guest!

I now see the donation, LW, and even though you did not sign in, I addressed my comment, and my thanks to you, directly. I will say it again here. THANK YOU so much for going above and beyond, for your generosity. You have touched me and my family. Thank you for helping us take care of our Otis.

May good karma and Lady Luck (and Lhudda, lol) continue to bring you positive everything! Smile

THANK YOU!!! Smile

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
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16 October 2012 - 12:07pm
#18

Hi folks - just letting you know that we are in the process of adding a link to let you donate your CLchips to each other whenever you want. Assuming all goes well it should be up and running by tomorrow.

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16 October 2012 - 12:20pm
#19

That is great news, CL-ed, you are on the ball Cool Thumb Up Smile Red Rose Thank you for all you do!!!

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16 October 2012 - 11:54pm
#20
CL-Ed wrote:

Hi folks - just letting you know that we are in the process of adding a link to let you donate your CLchips to each other whenever you want. Assuming all goes well it should be up and running by tomorrow.

That is a great idea. Thanks for doing this for us, so we can treat our friends or whatever! Awesome! Smile

Hope777

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17 October 2012 - 1:01am
#21
luckywalker wrote:

I saw that the donation posted and I didn't sign in to do it so it was as a guest!

What a nice thing to do LW. I'm sure you will win back what you donated because what goes around comes around. Wishing you good luck.

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17 October 2012 - 1:03am
#22
CL-Ed wrote:

Hi folks - just letting you know that we are in the process of adding a link to let you donate your CLchips to each other whenever you want. Assuming all goes well it should be up and running by tomorrow.

Thanks CL-Ed. It's nice to have someone here who keeps making the place better and better.

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17 October 2012 - 5:03am
#23

Hope777, is it okay if I'll share your WUAH link in Facebook if you don't mind.. ? FYI, I won't if you don't allow it.. Wink

Y'all take care.. =^. .^=

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18 October 2012 - 12:38am
#24

We have added the gifting option so just look to the left under the "Send PM" link and you can now "Give CLchips" to another member.

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18 October 2012 - 2:14am
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Looks good, Ed.

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18 October 2012 - 3:39am
#26
Ubetcha wrote:

Hope777, is it okay if I'll share your WUAH link in Facebook if you don't mind.. ? FYI, I won't if you don't allow it.. Wink

Hi Ubetcha, I am not doing FB right now, but I did have one organization suggest for me to post on FB to fund raise. I would be honored to have you share the link,and ask everyone to share the link, etc. THANK YOU SO MUCH! Smile (Even AFTER the surgery, we will still need to raise funds, because I will be trying to make payments, and right now my unemployment barely covers rent and bills. In fact, it doesn't lol)

I received your chips today, too, and I PMed you.

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Hope777

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18 October 2012 - 4:02am
#27

great, many thanks! I'm now sharing all I can.. fingers crossed, you get heroes in a heart beat!

Y'all take care.. =^. .^=

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18 October 2012 - 4:36am
#28

Hope I sent some dollars your way. I hope it helps.

1 member gave thanks for this useful post: barbadosslim93

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usluckywalker
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18 October 2012 - 10:14am
#29

You are a very generous and kind Man. CL- Ed!!!!

ushope777
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18 October 2012 - 12:34pm
#30
CL-Ed wrote:

Hope I sent some dollars your way. I hope it helps.

Did you send the CL chips? I am trying to be clear on what is coming in from different people so I know what I am doing and who to thank. Either way, THANK YOU, CL-Ed. I always say you are THE BEST, and I stand by those words. Smile

Hope777

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of the things, and no good thing ever dies.
Shawshank Redemption

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