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(Long) Maybe A Strange Question, But...


Guest bigorangedog
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Guest bigorangedog

So, as y'all know, we have lost 5 dogs in the past 12 months, 4 to long-term illness (cancer). Now we have 2 who just had leg amputations for osteo, and got the news yesterday that Whitey's osteo is back. We've had Whitey for 5 months.

 

I love the senior boys. I just plain love them. Crisco was adopted at age 7, and while not a "senior" quite yet, was "difficult to place" and we were his 4th shot at a home. Tanner was adopted at age 9.5. Sly at age 10.5. Apollo at age 9.5. Whitey at age 11. Each one has been an absolute gift. We had Tanner for 3 years, but Sly only 6 months. I don't think I would ever adopt a dog younger than age 9 again. They are just so wonderful and deserve an easy life for the rest of their days.

 

Trouble is, they're expensive...not to put too fine a point on it. Just since November with Apollo and Whitey's amputations, chemo, acupuncture, xrays, bloodwork, painkillers, special diets, etc., we've probably spent $12,000-$14,000. In 4 months. And that's with FREE chemo drugs from OSU.

 

DH is freaking out, reasonably, about this and is saying that he does not want to get another senior after we lose dear Whitey. But that's exactly what I want to do. He's afraid that if we get another senior, he'll get bone cancer, and frankly there's a pretty darn good chance that he would. We can't afford another bone cancer dog right now. (We also adopted two human "special needs" children in the past 12 months at around $25K each time, plus we run MNGR.) DH is right. We can't. He works for the local public school system, for goodness sake.

 

But it seems ridiculous to have senior boys waiting in kennels and foster homes all over the place when I *CAN* take care of one. I know the osteo drill, unfortunately. The orthopedic surgeon's office recognizes my voice on the phone. I can advocate for them, get them the right care, baby them, worry about them, see them through it. We have a house set up for dogs, with no slippery floors, with ramps, with carpet that doesn't stain. We have dog beds everywhere. I am home during the day, and I can bandage, give injections, hand feed, everything they might need. And I am honored to do it. I feel LUCKY that I can give them another chance at a happy life, and a real forever home that loves them. I can let them break my heart over and over again, as long they lead me to another one who needs me.

 

The only thing I can't do anymore is pay $7000 of vet bills over a couple month period. So, I am wondering whether anyone knows of grants, donations, or organizations that provide money for this kind of thing. The catch is that the dog would be our own dog, not an adoptable.

 

If I won the lottery and could do anything I wanted to, or if vet bills we not a worry, I would love to have a little "old folks home" of senior boys. Of course we hope that they stay healthy and playful long into their old age, but if they don't, I would take care of them, and they would have their own little family of other senior boys to hang out with. It just sucks that we don't have universal health care for dogs. ;-)

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Well, first off, please recognize you are truly amazing people for sacrificing what you do for the hounds. Each and every one of them is so lucky to have passed through your home.

 

Sorry I can't be of help on the grant question but wonder if pet insurance mght be the way to go for future seniors?

 

Vet bills, of course come in at all ages....Bumper cost us $6000 in the first six months we had him (autoimmune), at 4 years of age. So, there are no guarantees, but I know the chances of increased vet bills come with age, of course.

 

Good luck with your next decisions. Prayers for Whitey and you guys for giving such great gifts to these hounds.

Doe's Bruciebaby Doe's Bumper

Derek

Follow my Ironman journeys and life with dogs, cats and busy kids: A long road

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Guest bigorangedog

Well, first off, please recognize you are truly amazing people for sacrificing what you do for the hounds. Each and every one of them is so lucky to have passed through your home.

 

Sorry I can't be of help on the grant question but wonder if pet insurance mght be the way to go for future seniors?

 

Vet bills, of course come in at all ages....Bumper cost us $6000 in the first six months we had him (autoimmune), at 4 years of age. So, there are no guarantees, but I know the chances of increased vet bills come with age, of course.

 

Good luck with your next decisions. Prayers for Whitey and you guys for giving such great gifts to these hounds.

 

We are the lucky ones. :)

We've been talking about insurance, but a lot of the plans won't accept a senior dog (some over age 8, some over 10) as a new enrollment. And virtually all exclude pre-existing conditions, so that makes it hard if we adopt a dog with a known health issue. If anyone has recommendations, I'd be happy to hear them.

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Oh, I hear you! :(

 

I said the same as you - I didn't want to adopt young dogs ever again, I wanted the seniors. When we lost Renie and Jack so close together and ended up houndless, I said to DH that I wanted to look for a senior pair - one of the hardest things to place, I imagine. DH said no. He said he'd like a break from the medical expenses, and from the stress (have to say, I'm still crying when I think of Jack and Renie, over a year later, so he has a point, but there are no guarantees as we all know) and what's more, he only wanted one this time. :o

 

So here we are with only one, relatively young dog (albeit a tripod ;)) for the time being, but my heart aches. I want a second and I want a senior. *Sigh*

 

But going back to your question - over here, sometimes you'll find hounds offered for adoption with 'all medical expenses paid' for life, simply because they're special needs or senior seniors. Does that ever happen in the US?

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Guest PhillyPups

Jen,

 

You gÓt me thinking if a consortium was set up, like the self-insured towns in government (I know my brother spearheaded it for liability insurance in Camden County, NJ and it works and saves the towns $$ in insurance bills) where it would be say 100 people putting in $50 per month (just figures for example) that would be $26,000 per year. You get more members and the number grows. It would be a not for profit, which could probably be established. A board would me necessary too.

 

Just a thought that in planting a seed something could come out of it. With adopting seniors the cost of pet health insurance can be cost prohibitive.

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Maybe I'm alone in this, but it would be great to see something passed in legislation so responsible pet owners could claim medical expenses on their taxes. I know there was a petition going around, but haven't heard too much about it in little bit.

 

Good luck on your search to find an answer to your question!

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Guest Energy11

Well, first off, please recognize you are truly amazing people for sacrificing what you do for the hounds. Each and every one of them is so lucky to have passed through your home.

 

Sorry I can't be of help on the grant question but wonder if pet insurance mght be the way to go for future seniors?

 

Vet bills, of course come in at all ages....Bumper cost us $6000 in the first six months we had him (autoimmune), at 4 years of age. So, there are no guarantees, but I know the chances of increased vet bills come with age, of course.

 

Good luck with your next decisions. Prayers for Whitey and you guys for giving such great gifts to these hounds.

 

We are the lucky ones. smile.gif

 

You guys ARE AWESOME!!!

 

Trupanion accepts dogs and cats up to 14 years! I have this insurance, and yes, it would cover cancer care, God forbid.

 

Sending many hugs to your family!

We've been talking about insurance, but a lot of the plans won't accept a senior dog (some over age 8, some over 10) as a new enrollment. And virtually all exclude pre-existing conditions, so that makes it hard if we adopt a dog with a known health issue. If anyone has recommendations, I'd be happy to hear them.

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It is hard to reach a financial limit, I know. We here would love to have more than 2 dogs but in my current situation I can't bank for more than 2. So that is all we have.

 

I believe (but refuse to verify :lol ) that our most costly dog has been Joseph, and that in his first year with us ... when he was 3, healthy, and robust as an ox!

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Guest GentleHugs

Somewhere I have a looooooooong list that's tucked away of different financial help organizations for people with pets and illnesses. Although I can't guarantee they can/will help but it doesn't hurt to ask. I've never contacted any of them - I just kept the list for those "just in case" times.

 

I forgot where I got the list from now but if you would be interested in it Jen - email me privately and I'll send it to you. It's a very long list and I'm not sure it would be ok if I post it here publicly or not. I'll be busy with some family Easter functions today so it might be tomorrow before I can send it if that's ok.

 

I often thought about starting something to help owners who are faced with huge vet bills that come on unexpectedly but my plate is so full right now - I'm not sure when I could actually have the time to figure it all out.

 

I love the senior boys, too.... and the senior girls. I have a retired sire currently (Patrick) that's not quite a senior yet (he's 8 - will be 9 in August). I adopted Romeo sight unseen as a senior boy and lost him 8 months after we adopted him. Heisman was 4 months shy of being 6 when we adopted him. He passed at age 12 1/2 from end stages of Wobblers. I'm hoping Patrick is with us for a long time. He's such a good boy and oh so loving, too. They only get sweeter as they age.

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Guest Energy11

Maybe I'm alone in this, but it would be great to see something passed in legislation so responsible pet owners could claim medical expenses on their taxes. I know there was a petition going around, but haven't heard too much about it in little bit.

 

Good luck on your search to find an answer to your question!

 

I have been thinking the same thing! It would be GREAT if we could claim our pets!!!!!!!!!!

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Guest kydie

I'm sure all of yiou have been following the "happy bill" that has been presented in Washinton, that would permit us to calim uo to $3,500 per year on our taxes for your pets.

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Guest Energy11

I'm sure all of yiou have been following the "happy bill" that has been presented in Washinton, that would permit us to calim uo to $3,500 per year on our taxes for your pets.

 

 

IF this became a reality, it would help restore my faith in this "government ..." and I use the term loosely!" Nuff said! It WOULD be nice if it (Govt) would literally throw us a bone!!!mad.gif

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Guest AmandaTolleson

I am with you on this one! I so badly want to just adopt the old ones! I just love me some white faces and they are just so special... But I don't know if I can due to expenses. Yes Lucy had liver failure 3 weeks after I adopted her at the age of 2 and cost me a bundle. And now she is still only 6 1/2 and costing me a huge amount of money. But chances are the seniors of course will be more likely to have greater medical expenses. It's just so sad. :(

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Some adoption groups will place seniors with health issues as long term fosters, so you don't actually adopt the senior and the group handles the vet bills. Obviously they have to approve the vet bills for the dog though.

Greyhound angels at the bridge- Casey, Charlie, Maggie, Molly, Renie, Lucy & Teddy. Beagle angels Peanut and Charlie. And to all the 4 legged Bridge souls who have touched my heart, thank you. When a greyhound looks into you eyes it seems they touch your very soul.

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Guest krystolla

There's a cocker spaniel rescue near me that does this -- they call it their "permanent foster" program for dogs that aren't otherwise likely to find a home. Mostly it's seniors but there have been a few special needs dogs too.

 

Haven't seen this happen in a greyhound group though -- it would be a great idea but I think it's probably rough trying to find the funds.

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Guest bigorangedog

There's a cocker spaniel rescue near me that does this -- they call it their "permanent foster" program for dogs that aren't otherwise likely to find a home. Mostly it's seniors but there have been a few special needs dogs too.

 

Haven't seen this happen in a greyhound group though -- it would be a great idea but I think it's probably rough trying to find the funds.

 

Ooh yeah. My group (MNGR) is a very small group, so that's the only perspective I have, but I can't really imagine any adoption group raising enough funds to put much of a dent in cancer treatment bills. We had a heck of a time even raising the $1200 that we needed to do the oral surgery on a 5-yr-old racer we got in with a hideously awful mouthful of teeth. I have no idea what we'd do if one of our adoptables had osteo! (Well, yeah I do -- it'd go on our personal credit cards and add to the pile....) Running an adoption group myself, I'd feel guilty as heck taking funds from another adoption group.

 

Looking into the insurance thing further.... Might be doable on a future dog (as long as we didn't adopt him with a pre-existing condition) but wouldn't help any of the guys we have right now as their conditions would be excluded. Definitely researching this though.

 

In my Dream World: We move back to Georgia. We buy a house down the road from Carl (who runs Adopt a Greyhound Atlanta, where I got my 6 original hounds). We become a "subsidiary" of AAGA -- their Old Boys' Club. Whenever Carl gets a senior boy return that nobody wants, we take care of him and do targeted fundraising for the Old Boys' Club vet bills along with AAGA. (Haven't told Carl this plan, but I bet he'd go for it a lot faster than my husband would! He hated living in Georgia...) Anyway, that's my Dream World. :blush

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Some adoption groups will place seniors with health issues as long term fosters, so you don't actually adopt the senior and the group handles the vet bills. Obviously they have to approve the vet bills for the dog though.

 

This could be a sticky wicket if the adoption group decides it isn't financially feasible to treat a dog and opts for euthanasia or palliative care when you might want to go all-out and do everything you can. You might want to think about what you would do in such a situation.

 

Good luck finding a solution! These guys need and deserve a home like yours.

Kristen with

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Guest eaglflyt

You know, this has been on my mind a lot. Insurance is wonderful when you have a young, healthy dog and then keep it covered with a good insurance company. However, with a senior, it's a different scenario in many cases.

 

There's human organizations that work on a different model. It would require staff to verify and make decisions and accept applications for participation. But, they work on a mostly *voluntary* basis and do not guarantee coverage, since it's primarily voluntary. Each person that participates pays in a designated monthly amount to wherever they are directed to send it ... to a participant with covered bills that month. If you don't adhere to your obligations, you can/will be dropped. But, when verified expenses are reported by a participant, the office directs all participating members where to send their monthly fee. I hope I'm making this understandable. I wonder if something similar to this might be a possibility for pet owners. They don't have to be approved by state insurance commissions since it isn't technically insurance .... it's all voluntary participation. And, it's not guaranteed that all your expenses will be covered if others don't hold up their obligations. But, it is a good idea, imho.

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