We had hoped to share some good cheer with you today, but instead, we are looking for a miracle. After two surgeries and several trips to the vet, Wheezy's life is on the line, as he recovers from a third surgery.
Wheezy is the sweetest little pitbull I've ever seen. There is not a mean bone in his body, and he only has eyes for his mama. We met him in early 2019 when he swallowed part of a tennis ball and had to have it surgically removed. It turns out that we were not done with this usually happy dog from Reading, Pennsylvania.
The last two weeks have been a rollercoaster for this poor pup. First, Wheezy got sick. His dutiful mom took him to the vet right away, and they did testing, including x-rays. There was a tiny shadow in his small intestine, but the vet thought it would pass. Wheezy seemed to be improving and was himself for a few days before taking a terrible turn. He didn't eat for three days, was throwing up and miserable. Back to the vet, he went. This time the x-rays showed a much more significant blockage, and there was even worry of an aggressive tumor. Wheezy needed emergency surgery again, and his mom had already spent her last few hundred dollars on his testing the week before. She did not want to ask for help, but she had to.
Surgery was performed, and it was discovered that the small blip on the first X-ray was a small plastic bag. He likely would have passed it on his own if not for it getting stuck at the spot where he had surgery the first time. The increased size was from waste building up around the bag, which came as a shock to his mom, who watches him like a hawk. Everything seemed positive. We even took this touching video of Wheezy reuniting with his mom after a night in the hospital. But the rollercoaster was far from over.
Wheezy had a very rough first day and night home and wasn't eating or resting. His mom took him back to the vet the next day to be tested for infections and other issues. The tests came out clean, and it was decided that Wheezy was taking the healing process hard, but would be okay. We all took a sigh of relief for a few hours.
But, Wheezy never regained his appetite. He wasn't eating or drinking. Fears of dehydration or other complications became very real. In the evening, he was rushed to a specializing hospital.
Now we must wait. He is getting fluids to keep him alive. Wheezy will also have tests done later today. It's still possible that his recovery is just incredibly difficult due to the stress of both surgeries, but other complications need to be ruled out. Most importantly, we cannot let him die from dehydration.
UPDATE (12/19/2019 1:45 PM):
Wheezy needs another surgery. The cost will be $8,000 to $10,000. If he does not get the operation, he will die. Currently, fluid is leaking through a tear in his previous incision. The surgeon needs to do exploratory surgery to locate the damage and determine the vitality of the surrounding tissue. If the tissue is vital, they can seal the tear. If not, they will have to remove part of his bowel and reseal it. They are optimistic about the procedure outcome. Without it, Wheezy's mom will have to say goodbye to her sweet boy.
UPDATE (12/20/2019 10:00 AM):
Yesterday Wheezy did have emergency surgery. He is doing well. The vet is waiting on some test results which will tell us more. His mom can go visit him this afternoon and will get a detailed explanation of how the surgery went at that time.
We do need whatever help we can get to pay for this unexpected, and expensive surgery. So far we have raised $3247.77 total toward Wheezy's mounting bills. THANK YOU to everyone who has donated whatever you can. Every donation helps.
UPDATE (12/26/2019 10:40 AM):
Wheezy's case has been such a whirlwind. We cannot THANK YOU, our Angel-Donors, enough for working together to raise, $10,329.38 in the week and a half leading up to Christmas. Over 340 people came together to make donations from $5 to $200. FTLOA doesn't have one rich family or big corporation to help. Instead, we asked hundreds of normal people with big hearts to work together, and YOU ANSWERED THE CALL. That truly is a CHRISTMAS MIRACLE!
Yesterday, Wheezy was cleared to go home. You've never heard a more giddy and happy voice than Wheezy's mom sharing the news. He was picked up in the evening and taken home to heal in peace, surrounded by love and comfort. He is still on medications and needs a close eye, but it looks like he is going to be okay. *HUGE SIGH OF RELIEF* This photo is him resting at home.
The little bit of bad news is that we are still $2670.62 from raising the total we need to cover all of his bills from the 16th through yesterday. Without your help, Wheezy would have faced a fate of either being put down or being surrendered. We have the good fortune of being able to access credit to ensure that Wheezy got to go home. But, this expense was not budgeted for--Wheezy's care would have only been $3000, if not for unexpected complications. As a small nonprofit, we don't want to take this debt into the new year. We hope that anyone who can afford to donate will help Wheezy's family cover this remaining portion of the bill. Every dollar helps.
UPDATE (12/13/2019 9:45 AM) Wheezy is still in the hospital. He had a blood transfusion to help him heal and regain his strength. He still hasn't eaten on his own. They are hopeful they can get him to eat today or tomorrow, and can clear him to go home to his mom.
Wheezy's veterinary bills are going to be $13,000 by the time he leaves the hospital. We need you to help save Wheezy. Every single donation helps. Currently we have raised just over half of the total. We still have $5,500 to go to cover Wheezy's life-saving treatment.
For The Love Of Alex (FTLOA) is a registered 501(c)3 organization, and donations are tax-deductible. We only pay veterinarians and pharmacies directly. FTLOA donations are never given to individuals. We have earned a Platinum Seal from Guidestar for our transparency.
For The Love of Alex Inc is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides emergency funding for urgent and lifesaving care of pets of low-income families.