The following is a story about one of the pets from our partner hospital, Ocean State Veterinary Specialists who faced a serious and unexpected crisis. Thankfully, Bentley got the care he needed and sailed through, but there are so many more out there like this whose owners want, but can't afford, unexpected treatment. They have nowhere to go, which is why we Waggle and the Waggle Foundation were founded.
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Bentley was a 4-year-old, neutered male Cockapoo who came to the OSVS emergency service one afternoon. His owners had gone outside with him as usual, but when he came back in he was having difficulty walking with his hind legs, and when he sat down his hind legs were straight out towards the front. He was acting restless and uncomfortable.
Within 30 minutes of arriving at the hospital, Bentley's signs progressed badly. He collapsed and couldn't breathe on his own. An MRI revealed a compressive disk in his spine and the risk of Bentley's spinal chord being permanently damaged.
Bentley's owners wanted to do everything they could for Bentley. The owners were warned that with the rapid onset of severe signs, there was a possibility he may not recover his ability to breathe on his own. However, Bentley was an integral part of their close family and they weren't ready to give up. They elected to try surgery and a few days on the ventilator and see if he could recover.
Seven days after his surgery, Bentley was able to come off the ventilator completely. When the sedation wore off, it was evident that he was mentally appropriate - able to respond, bark, and wag his tail, but could not lift his head or support any weight in his limbs. Physical therapy was initiated.
Twelve days after his surgery, Bentley was discharged from the hospital – still not able to stand, but able to swallow food, urinate on his own, and ready for the long process of physical therapy at home.
Over the next few weeks, Bentley's owners faithfully worked with him, providing physical therapy as well as loving care to keep his attitude positive. His appetite improved, and by Day 25 post-op he was able to stand. He continued to improve, and today is a happy, playful boy again.
Bentley's story is truly one of devotion and patience paying off. There were several days during his immediate post-operative period when his owners questioned whether they should keep going. Because we could not guarantee that his spinal cord would heal, it was truly a matter of faith and hope that kept them going. Bentley has a wonderful spirit and will to live. Even when he could not raise his head, he would wag his tail and beg for treats with his eyes. He just needed his people to believe in him, and he did his part.
Bentley's Family Says:
''The care Bentley received was the best we could possibly ask for. Everyone stayed by his side day and night. We, too, stood by our little guy's side as well .... not being able to let him go. At times, it looked like we might have to but we're a VERY close family and Bentley is DEFINITELY a part of the equation. We HAD to give him a chance. So, with the help and the talents of Dr. Coronado, the wonderful staff at OSVS, and our determination as a family, our dreams of having our puppy were in view.
We can't thank everyone enough for the FULL recovery Bentley has made. The knowledge, kindness, and professionalism from the staff of OSVS were the best that we could have possibly asked for and has brought us to where we are today. Happy 10th Anniversary OSVS! we now have OUR anniversaries tool"
—Dan, Robyn, Christopher, Michael, and Bentley B.