In the beginning of 2011 a dog was found in the bowels of the city, emaciated, deaf, hairless, and diseased. With an ear half bitten off and pieces of skin hanging from his frail body this dog didn’t have much going for him. In fact, perhaps the only quality he possessed was a strong heart, a desire to live his dream.
We saw a dog close to death and our heads told us we faced a difficult task. We knew from experience that whatever we did might not be enough. Still, our hearts opened to this beautiful boy.
Our donors, opened their hearts and opened their wallets. GREAT never takes their donors for granted. We know how difficult it is to open our own wallets in this economy, yet our donors didn’t let Titus down. The Titus fund raised $1,348 to help Titus and his total expenses were $1,579.61. Today Titus is doing well and living happily with his adopted mom!
The Titus Fund continues in his honor to help other dogs with extensive medical needs get a second chance for a GREAT life.
We’ve been amazed with how generous our GREAT friends have been. Your kindness to these sweet dogs during a rough economy may qualify you as saints – we know these GREAT Goldens think you’re saints – you can see it in their eyes.
To date $7,391 has been raised through the Titus fund but our total expenses on our Titus Fund dogs are at $10,496. Unfortunately, the need for the Titus Fund does not end. So many unwanted dogs remain with severe medical issues.
Not only did The Titus Fund work to help Titus, it also helped Ivy who came to great through Taveres, Florida Animal Control in July 2011. The vet’s report upon Ivy’s arrival indicated she suffered from fur loss and skin issues due to constant flea infestation. Like many dogs loose on the streets, she was heartworm positive. Her nails were grotesquely long and the malnourished girl weighed a heartbreaking 33.6 pounds. Both eyes were infected and running with the beginning of cataracts in both eyes, plus a severe ear infection in one ear.
The list of Ivy’s ailments goes on, but that didn’t deter us from giving her another chance. We reached out to our GREAT friends and they once again did not let us down. Money was raised to help Ivy with her final medical expenses reaching $1768. With the generosity of our supporters, we were able to provide Ivy with the health care and love that she so desperately deserved and needed. Ivy’s age and ailments were too much for her little body, but she crossed the rainbow bridge knowing the kindness and love that should be a part of every dog’s life. We are proud to know that with your support we were able to provide her with this.
Jake, a 9-year-old male, came to GREAT through Jacksonville Animal Care and Protective Services in November 2011. It was clear from the start that Jake would need some extra medical attention since he was limping on his back leg. We learned that Jake would need ACL surgery to correct the problem with his leg. Jake had surgery in January 2012 and it went very well.
Jake’s surgery cost $1,587.43 and along with his other medical expenses, the grand total expended on getting Jake healthy was $1,947.09. Jake was adopted on March 30, 2012 and is having a GREAT life with his new mom!
On January 28, 2012, Inga was rescued by GREAT from an animal shelter. Because of her condition, this sweet girl would have been euthanized. Only a little over a year old, Inga’s face looked like raw hamburger meat from Demetic mange, she had very serious open wounds on her neck, skin infection from fleas, heartworms, parasitic worms and was malnourished. Despite all of this, as soon as she was let out of her cage, she ran up to the GREAT representative, jumped up on her with a big smile and started licking her. Her body may have been in horrible condition but her spirit was not broken.
Inga was taken straight to one of our wonderful rescue vets where they started working their magic on her. She was vaccinated and tests were run on her to determine the nature of all of her problems. They treated her for parasitic worms and gave her a medicated bath and dip for the mange. The bath and dip treatment had to be continued once a week for several weeks until all of the mange was gone. When those problems were cleared up, she was spayed and then went through heartworm treatment. She had a wonderful foster family who took care of her throughout her entire treatment period which lasted almost 4 months.
On May 18th she was adopted to a wonderful lady who renamed her Penny because she was like a shiny new penny. She calls Penny “My Love”. Penny is loving her second chance at life and her new mom is over the moon in love with her.
Inga’s total medical bills came to $799.34.
One of our volunteers worked for 3 months to rescue a dog she saw running the streets along Atlantic Blvd. It was obvious she had recently given birth to a litter of puppies and her tongue hung out to one side. We at GREAT decided if she was ever captured, we would name her in honor of the young lady who faithfully looked for the dog each day, put out food for her and set a cat trap which she checked 3 times a day. Courtney was finally successful in capturing “Courtney” on April 3, 2012.
After a short stay at the shelter, GREAT took the 4-legged Courtney to one of our rescue vets to get the normal things done. Courtney had a respiratory infection and there was a lot of concern about her mouth and tongue. We had a veterinary dentist examine her and it was determined that she had a birth defect as well as some fracturing around the jaw with nerve damage, explaining why her tongue hung so funny. Because Courtney’s teeth were also oddly placed and she bit her tongue each time she ate, the dentist pulled the two offending teeth so that Courtney could eat without any pain.
After a stay at the animal hospital for a couple of weeks, Courtney went to a loving foster home to continue to recuperate. Her foster family fell in love with her and adopted her on June 12th. The happy family is pictured above.
Courtney’s deeply discounted medical bills by both our rescue vet and the veterinary dentist still totaled $1,634.71.
Bodie, whose owner had never even named him, was rescued from a rural shelter on August 8, 2012. He had been taken from his owner because of abuse and neglect. This sweet golden boy, only about a year and a half old, was severely underweight, had heart worms, tapeworms and hookworms, had a broken toe and a toenail had been pulled out. His other nails were extremely long and his fur was dull because of poor nutrition. He was running a fever and had an infection from the toe nail situation. Despite all of that, he had a huge smile on his face the entire drive from the shelter to the vet’s office as you can see from this photo. He knew that better times were ahead for him. We named him in honor of the nice young shelter worker who gave Bodie extra love and attention, and worked with him to get him over his fear of people.
Bodie’s medical bills came to a total of $865.78 during the 3 months he was in our rescue. Today he is healthy and happy in his forever home.
On August 31, 2012, GREAT received the following email:
“I live off of Beauclerc Road in Mandarin. Two nights ago I found a stray dog (laying down in the street with no collar) and took her home. My family and I took her to the vet to get checked out. She doesn’t have a chip identifying an owner, she is between 10 and 14 years old, and she is a pure bred golden retriever. My family and I are spending time trying to find her owner, but are doubtful that she has one as she was very skinny and incredibly dirty. We have of course given her food and several baths, but financially we cannot afford to keep her. Taking her to a shelter is not an option as the Jacksonville Humane Society is not accepting strays right now and all the other shelters use euthanasia. Is she a dog which you would accept into your program?”
We, of course, said yes, and took her straight to one of our rescue vets. Dixie, the name given to her by her rescuers, only weighed 37 pounds! She was estimated to be about 10 years old and amazingly was heart worm and parasitic worm free. After getting vaccinated, bathed and tested, Dixie was placed in a wonderful foster home and everyone thought she was on her way to recovery. Unfortunately, that was not to be the case as a couple of weeks later, it was determined that she had some kidney problems. Everyone involved – the vets, GREAT and her wonderful foster parents – did everything possible to save Dixie’s life but she suffered renal failure and had to be euthanized 3 months after she was rescued off of the street.
The following was posted on Facebook by her foster mom a couple of days after Dixie (whom she renamed Stella), crossed the Rainbow Bridge. The above photo of Dixie sleeping peacefully on the couch accompanied the posting.
“This is sweet little Dixie aka Stella. She was my foster for the last 2 months. She was a senior and basically discarded like garbage when GREAT found her. I have a sweet spot in my heart for seniors and when I heard her story I couldn’t resist. When I saw her I cried. I was determined to bring her back but unfortunately she had kidney failure and the prognosis was not good. So I wanted to give her the best life possible to the end. She was a fighter till the end but we lost her on Thur. Nov.30. I know most people want young goldens but I can’t express enough how fulfilling it is to get all the love they have to give. Rest in peace my sweet little Stella. I will miss you with all my heart. Thank you GREAT for bringing this sweet little soul into my life.”
Thank you, Jamie, for making this golden girl’s last few months of life one of security, happiness and love. She died in comfort and peacefully with you instead of in pain and alone on a street.
Dixie’s medical expenses totaled $926.68. Because of donors like you, she was able to have a good life for the time she had remaining on this side of the Rainbow Bridge. RIP, Dixie.
Gretchen was in a shelter for some time where she won the hearts of the shelter staff and volunteers but she had a large growth on her tummy which made her unattractive to potential adopters. Gretchen never lost her spirit and happiness while there and when our GREAT lady picked up another Golden from the shelter, they asked to see her. Without a doubt, she won her over at first glance and before we knew it, Gretchen was winging her way to our Rescue.
Upon arrival at our rescue veterinary hospital, everyone immediately marveled over this joyful girl but were concerned over this growth so in true condition to GREAT’s Full Service Rescue Policy, the staff at Greenbriar Animal Hospital opted to perform major surgery. With their expertise, it was extremely successful and the biopsy report came back BENIGN. We call her our miracle girl.
Gretchen is what we believe, a Golden Retriever/Labrador Retriever, house trained, crate trained, spayed, heart worm negative, vaccinated, wormed, 4 years old and anxiously awaiting her forever family to come along and give her the life she was always meant to have.
Gretchen’s medical expenses came to $975.29 and was worth every penny!
With medical care averaging near $650 for each dog rescued by GREAT and adoption fees never exceeding $375, funds are spread thin. GREAT simply cannot continue to save the lives of these dogs without your financial help. Any amount that you can contribute will help and allow us to turn the lives of these Goldens around.