Tru Hero finalist: Kumbi

My Australian Terrier Kumbi, diabetic and blind, died suddenly and unexpectedly at home, Tuesday 8 June, 2010 – just before his breakfast-time.

I carried him out to the car, laid him on the passenger seat, and drove to the clinic, compressing his chest all the way, though Kumbi was thoroughly dead. Half an hour before opening time, after a long wait, Dr. Ute Mannhardt arrived. She took us right in. Dr. Carla Bell had the day off, and Dr Amanda Booth was on a plane to Anaheim, for a conference of Internal Medicine specialists (she’s a board-certified specialist).

Dr. Ute and I exchanged hugs over Kumbi’s body. I asked for an informal post-mortem exam; Dr. Ute agreed. I went home, dawdling – no Kumbi at home. He was my last living animal companion.

Over the next three days, Dr. Amanda sent me daily email from the conference. Kumbi had died of cancer, not diabetes. Dr. Carla had come in on her day off to assist Dr. Ute with the post-mortem, and all three vets had been in touch with each other.

Kumbi had been in hospital the day before for observation, and all had said he appeared quite chipper. He just took us all by surprise, before we could do the planned ultrasound. Kumbi was my first dog ever to die without euthanasia.

My vets all work together, and see to it that all the vets and staff get continuing education. It is we human clients – and the animals – who benefit. My vets work as team-mates, and we, the clients, are also team-mates; the vets ask for our observations. This practice makes for the best possible care for the animals.

A neighbor showed up at my home with a huge basket of food sent by the staff.

My vets and staff pitched in and helped me work on finding a dog to adopt. Dr. Amanda wrote me a reference letter. So, eventually, Camellia, a badly traumatized Havanese, aged 3.5 years, became my next dog. She is doing very well, and has the usual aid from my vets and their staff. Camellia has Trupanion insurance.

This story is only one of the many acts of kindness I’ve had from these vets in the more than 20 years I’ve been with them. I know others have had similar kindnesses. Also, this clinic sets aside a percentage of time and funds to care for homeless animals – who are not paying clients.

So you can see why these vets are my Tru Heros.

-Carol from Shirley, BC

About Stacy @Trupanion

Stacy Kowalchuk is a dog mom to her rescued Whippet-mix, Ellie. During the week, you can find Stacy surfing (the internet, that is) and managing Trupanion's presence in the social media world. In her free time, Stacy likes to bake, especially cupcakes! To balance her culinary affinity, she also likes to stay active, especially with activities that include her dog such as hiking and going to dog parks.

114 Responses to Tru Hero finalist: Kumbi

  1. Evelyn says:

    Everyone in your story was “blessed with the best”: the dogs with a good owner and vets; the owner with a wonderful furry friend and good vets; the vets with an owner who is a good client, and patients who teach patience!

  2. Peggy Outly says:

    Just staying with a vet staff for more than 20 years is a testament to how wonderful they are at partnering with the pet parent to love and care for the furry ones. In addition to providing a share of their profits to help homeless animals. Bless them and Kumbi.

  3. bev says:

    I like this, what awesome vets.

  4. Craig & Annie says:

    Great vets and friends.

  5. Terri Alcock says:

    I know how important a good veterinary team is for both animal and human companion, and these folks go above and beyond.

  6. valerie says:

    I would be thrilled to find such vets in my town. I wonder if they have any referrals in the south Florida area! You are blessed to have such compassion and care for your fur children…not to mention what the clinic does for homeless animals. Truly special!

  7. Shellie says:

    This is a beautiful story! Truly wonderful, caring vets and an owner who honestly loves her pets. Thank you for this story!

  8. Sandy lopes says:

    These vets go above and beyond the call of duty!! Dedicated not only to the animals, but to the human parents as well!! If only there could be more like them!

  9. Sandi Barrett says:

    very few people have vets like this. I’ve been with my vets for 12 years and they don’t hold a candle to these guys. I’m very happy for Carol that she had such awesome vets at such a trumatic time.
    God Bless those wonderful vets!

  10. Patty says:

    Such a compassionate story and wonderful example of a great vet-client relationship.

  11. Allison says:

    What a truly touch story and a great partnership between vets and patients!

  12. Judi Johnson says:

    These sound like very dedicated and caring vets. I love that they set aside time for homeless animals as well as the compassion they gave to you and Kumbi.

  13. Norma Jean says:

    Wonderfully written story about a sweet dog and a special group of vets.

  14. Peggy Barrasso says:

    Wow…Kumbi was one very lucky dog to have vets like these to care for him! I wish I had a vet that “all work together, and see to it that all the vets and staff get continuing education”. Bless you all!

  15. Louise Limoges says:

    Kumbi was a very lucky boy to have had such a good mom and such a good, caring and compassionate team of vets.

    With diabetes and other medical conditions, having such a team of vets supporting you is any dog owner’s dream.

    Bless them and Kumbi for leaving such a legacy.

  16. Barb Conway says:

    Kumbi was truly blessed to have Carol and the’Tru Hero Vets’ in his life.

  17. Kevin says:

    This story just grips at your heart. Imagine such an involved pet owner performing chest compressions on their dog until they reached the clinic. That is certainly above and beyond what most people would do. It is clear that Kumbi had the best of care from not only his owner, but his vet doctors as well. The personal care they provided both the owner and Kumbi is remarkable. It’s nice to see an interactive “doctor-client” relationship like this. It doesn’t always work this way for everyone! This is a special dog, a special owner and special veterinarians. My vote goes to Tru Hero Finalist Kubmi, paws down!

  18. Sue says:

    Wouldn’t it be great if all vets (and doctors) worked that closely with the patients and families. They are a great example.

  19. MaryLea says:

    What an awesome story! I’d love to be able to share such a story about MY vets, who are good, but not as great as these. Sounds like they really care for the patients and clients. Wonder if these vets have any kin in South Texas?

  20. Skye says:

    What a great story, the vets clearly did everything they could for both Kumbi and his owner. All relationships with vets should be like this. Teamwork is vital in dealing with long term illnesses with pets and owners, we should all be so blessed as to have vets like this for our pets!

  21. Tim says:

    Kumbi was truly blessed to have such a great owner and wonderful vets caring for him!

  22. Sandra says:

    Having a diabetic and blind Miniature Schnauzer the story of Kumbi broke my heart, but made me think of the time that my precious girl will leave me. I could only wish I had the wonderful staff that so clearly cared for both Carol and Kumbi. I am still searching for a truly caring vet after many years of my baby having diabetes. I would love to be treated like a team-mate and have a great vet team like this be my Tru Heros.

  23. George says:

    I vote for Kumbi!

  24. Jennifer says:

    Very sad to read Kumbi’s story.

    Wish all vets were this wonderful. My one cat is almost 11 years old and she has been to at least that many vets. The search for an excellent vet is never-ending.

    My vote is for this Tru Hero story!!!

  25. Molly Melhuish says:

    Carol and her vets cared for Kumbi’s spirit as well as his body. I know this, from oral tradition of millennium of Maori in New Zealand, handed down to me by a keeper of that tradition: the spirit stays with the body for a while after death. Kumbi was aware of Carol and the Saseenos vets, who helped his spirit depart in peace and rejoicing in his wonderful and caring environment. Carol’s insights come from not from indigenous tradition, but from decades of observation and thoughtful reading and writing about it. To find out, just google “dogs real needs”.

  26. Anne says:

    Lovely story of supportive and caring vets. My vote is for Carol, Camellia and Kumbi.

  27. Kara says:

    What a touching story with a great group of compassionate and caring vets. Another vote for Kumbi!

  28. Maureen Schroyen says:

    My vote is for Kumbi!

  29. Gene_MTL says:

    Kumbi was blessed to have Carol for an owner. And together they were blessed to have such wonderful and caring Vets.

    Adding another vote for Kumbi!

  30. Annie says:

    What a touching story!! My vite is for Kumbi!!

  31. Bonnie says:

    I wish all vets were this wonderful…

  32. Eileen says:

    Such compassion! Lucky Kumbi to have had such wonderful care with this team of Veterinarians.

  33. Sharon says:

    What a lovely story of kindness and compassion. My vote is for Kumbi.

  34. Kathy says:

    Our family (human, feline and canine) have also been lucky enough to have been looked after by the vets and staff at this wonderful clinic for over twenty years. My vote also goes to Kumbi and thanks to Carol for nominating Saseenos Veterinary Services as her True Hero Vets.

  35. Sue McTaggart says:

    As a neighbouring clinic I can say that this group of vets and their staff always get rave reviews from their clients and colleagues alike, for both veterinary expertise and level of caring kindness. I vote for them.

  36. Narelle Russell says:

    Kumbi was blessed to have Carol for an owner. I would love to have a clinic that was so caring.

    Adding another vote for Kumbi

  37. Jen says:

    My vote is for Kumbi and the amazing team at Saseenos Veterinary Services!

  38. Rusty says:

    Carol really understands the bond formed between a dog and its owner. Each gives the other pleasure and comfort.

    Carol is indeed fortunate to have a network of caring and dedicated vets who helped her through Kumbi’s crisis.

    Kumbi gets my vote!

  39. William Ham says:

    A resounding vote for Kumbi – what a great story

  40. Joëlle says:

    My vote goes to Kumbi and Carol

  41. Wendi Folkersen says:

    I vote for Kumbi I know what a dedicated owner Carol is and what dedicated vets are at Saseenos Veterinary Services

  42. Stephanie says:

    Another vote for Kumbi’s story & Saseenos Vet Services in Sooke, BC

  43. Brook Alder says:

    I vote for Kumbi … it is all about the love!

  44. Dr.Charlie says:

    Loved the story; my vote goes to them hands down dpown

  45. Peter says:

    Amanda and her staff extended the lives of both our cats by at least five years each. In three countries I have never met a vet as caring and compassionate.

  46. Bev says:

    I vote for the Kumbi story… this is going above and beyond what one would hope for… helps put closure to losing a beloved pet!!!

  47. Barbara and The Symphony of Hounds says:

    The hounds and I vote for Kumbi and Saseenos! It is a special relationship to find vets so caring and accomodating and aware of the details of not just the dog’s health, but his and his DogMum’s emotional well-being, through the processes of routine care and emergency or serious health issues.

  48. Eila says:

    I’m adding a vote for Kumbi here too. I love my vets — who happen to be these same ones. I’ve got three horses and two dogs with varying issues (dog with diabetes, a horse with COPD/heaves, another horse who is accident prone) that the vets have helped us with over the years.

  49. Jaime says:

    I vote for Kumbi

  50. Cobina Baillie says:

    Thank God for these caring vets and the amazing committment they give to their animal and human clients/friends. Big hello to my friend Amanda!

  51. Cheryl Fertich says:

    Sassenos vet clinic and Dr Amanda imparticular has been a part of my family for over 20 years. Together with them I have been blessed to see all of my animals make it into their teens to late teens. This never would have happened with out the caring expertise of Sassenos vet clinic. It is with great appreciatation that I whole heartedly vote for Kumbi. Thank you for being such skilled, compasionate and caring vets and staff. I would never take my animals any where else!!

  52. Celeste says:

    Having worked with the wonderful staff of Saseenos, and having known Carol and her dogs- I am so proud to vote for her story.

  53. Violette says:

    I am fortunate enough to know Carol and to work with all these wonderful vets. Good Luck with the contest Carol.

  54. Chloe Leslie says:

    I vote for Kumbi. You guys are awesome!

  55. Chris Devlin says:

    I wish I’d been able to do the planned ultrasound…Although we now know it would have shown bad news, at least I could have helped to soften the blow of his sudden death. My heart goes out to Carol…and I’d love to meet Camellia someday!
    Sincerely, Chris at CVUES ultrasound

  56. Krista Clarke says:

    I have the fortunate distinction of being Carol’s neighbour and I have seen first hand the wonderful care she gives to her furry companions. It only stands to reason that Carol would choose to associate herself with an incredible team like Saseenos Vet Clinic.
    I’m sorry I didn’t get to meet Kumbi but I know in my heart that he was well loved and cared for. Camelia tells me daily how happy she is with Carol by her side and it has been a pleasure to watch Carol pull her out of her shell.
    Good Luck with the contest Carol, I sincerely hope you win!

  57. Kacey says:

    I’m so sorry to hear of your loss, although I’m happy to hear that you had the love and support of your vets. I’ve personally experienced the amazing care by the vets and staff at Sasseenos. They’ve gone above and beyond for us and our furry friend. Good luck with the contest, Carol!

  58. Kris says:

    Our vote is for Kumbi!

  59. Tammy Hunt says:

    Carol & Kumbi

  60. margaret cox says:

    My votes for Kumbi

  61. Ann says:

    The vets at Saseenos look like very caring doctors. I’m sure Kumbi is missed by his non-fur folk.

  62. Nyla says:

    My vote is for Kumbi! Carol is a wonderful lady who is utterly devoted to her dogs! I have been fortunate enough to be able to help provide care for Kumbi and Kwali, and now her newest, Camellia!

  63. Gary Neilson says:

    Dr. Amanda Booth saved our dog Chester by removing his spleen with a large canteloped sized growth on it. We have experince the same care for him from Saseenos Vet Services.

    Our vote is for Kumbi and the staff at Saseenos!

  64. Marlon Badesso says:

    I have worked with Saseenos Veterinary Services for a number of years and have found them to be very professional and dedicated.

  65. Tenny says:

    My vote is for Kumbi

  66. Nik S. says:

    I want to vote for Kumbi .
    Thanks !
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  67. Tomik says:

    Our vote is for Kumbi and the staff at Saseenos

  68. sarah west says:

    My vote is for Kumbi I know very personally the family who started the funds for the Jake and Elwood fund they are the most loving and compassionate family and so is Dr Amanda She is truly an angel for the animals in her care

  69. W. Haven says:

    I vote for Kumbi’s story!

  70. Gail and Dave says:

    Definitely vote for Kumbi. We have had first hand experience with Amanda and Carla and all the great staff at Saseenos Vet.

  71. yvonne sims says:

    my vote goes to Carol & Kumbi, and the Saseenos staff

  72. Heidi Young says:

    I vote for Kumbi. I have known Dr. Booth and the wonderful staff
    at the Saseenos clinic for many years and they are truly dedicated
    and caring folk.

  73. Randy Abercrombie says:

    Have shared many years of shared stories as well as shared tears with Carol and remeber the day we lost Kumbi. Carols veterinarian partners and her storey certainly get my vote.

  74. Pamala says:

    I want to vote for Kumbi .
    Thanks !

  75. Karen says:

    I vote for Kumbi’s story!

  76. Linda Bamer says:

    I’ve had the delight and honor to have been friends with Carol and Kumbi through membership of a group called Muffin, formed to support people with diabetic animals. Diabetes is a disease that requires daily owner participation in the animal’s care, and it is essential to have a strong working relationship with your vet. Carol most obviously did, and shared her knowledge of the disease via email to other members of the group. My thanks to her vets, who gave Carol the support and excellent care for Kumbi, and bless his heart, we remember him well.

  77. Fran Stepps says:

    Dedication to animals and love…..this is what Carol W. is all about.
    I wish I had such vets in my neck of the woods. And should I ever need pet insurance, I will surely follow in Carols’ footsteps. Please include me in the list as a voter for Carol, Kumbi and her wonderful vets and staff.

  78. Marie says:

    1 vote for Carol, please and thank you! :)

  79. Angie says:

    My vote is for Kumbi. Thank you for all who care for the animals!

  80. Tim says:

    My vote is for Kumbi!

  81. Joy Hamada says:

    My fur kids and I vote for Carol and Kumbi! Carol took me under her wing when I first joined the muffin group when my shih tzu became diabetic! She got me going in the right direction to care for my little dog!! What a terrific, caring lady! Muffin Group (Support for diabetic pet owners), has many terrific members! I remember, with a sad heart, the day we lost Kumbi! Carol and her Vets. did everything humanly possible for that little dog, and Carol’s Vet. Partner’s and friends did everything they could for her! Now thats love!!

    Joy Hamada

  82. Leigh says:

    My vote is for Kumbi!

  83. Joanne Smith says:

    My vote is for Kumbi.My dog is under the care of the doctors at the Sasseenos vet clinic. Having had many pets in my life I can attest to the devotion of the staff.

  84. Mike Tovey says:

    Kudos to Saseenos Veterinary Services. You have my vote.

  85. tamara nesbitu says:

    ‘ve known Carol from my dog list for years and she, like all of us, are extremely discriminating when it comes to vet care. She and her darlng were so lucky to have such good care, for dog and human alike (no physician for humans i know can do that). Vets who comfort their patients *and* their patients’ human caregivers are a very special sortof human. They out to be recognized and lauded. Carol is so very lucky.

  86. John Young says:

    Our dog Bruno, a lovely bouvier with a taste for unusual foods, was several times saved from his own appetites by the caring and dedicated staff at Saseenos Vet Services. I vote for Kumbi’s story as an example of this dedicated and caring clinic.

  87. Charlie says:

    Carol and Kumbi.
    Amanda, Carla and the staff at Saseenos have looked after all my dogs and cats for 30 years and have been caring professionals all this time Thanks from all of us.

  88. Diane Eskenasy says:

    I vote for Kumbi and Carol and their kind and caring vets!

  89. Kerrie Reay says:

    The story of Kumbi that Carol has offered truly reflects the care,kindness and love that Dr. Amanda and her staff at Saseenos offers. We certainly appreciate the time this past May that Dr. Amanda and the staff took to come to our home with only a few hours notice, to have our beloved Cromwell helped to the other side of Rainbow Bridge. They sat with us, they held us, and they cried with us as he slipped away. They also stayed with us and helped us with Cromwell for his last ride (he was 175 pounds and needed four people to carry him). Their caring for Cromwell and us was second to none. To Carol, we are so sorry for your loss of Kumbi and sharing your story truly is a great way to remember him and you have our vote.

  90. Soaphie & Sydney's Mom says:

    Carol and Kumbi – All the way!

  91. Katie & Frodo says:

    Our vote is for Kumbi!!! Carol is a wonderful person & has helped out so many others with their diabetic critters & without a doubt made a wonderful choice in vetrinarian & staff members who gave Kumbi all their love. Tru Heros for sure! :)

  92. Kit Rose says:

    I vote for Kumbi’s Story

  93. Kayla says:

    My vote goes to kumbi , Carol, and the amazing staff at Saseenos . The staff have always been welcoming and kind to both animals and people.

  94. Carol says:

    I vote for Kumbi.

  95. Cathy says:

    I vote for Kumbi

  96. Catherine Gale says:

    I vote for Kumbi! I’ve been going to Sassenos Vet for years with my cats and have received amazing support through difficult situations thanks to vets and staff. I’ve learned a lot as they’ve always taken the time to explain what’s going on, what the treatment options are, and what I can do at home. They’ve been incredibly knowledgeable and caring so it’s great to vote for them.

  97. Sue Wilson says:

    I vote for Kumbi. Dr. Booth and Dr. Bell are the greatest!

  98. Sally Thomson says:

    Wish we had such caring vets in my area too!

  99. Cindy says:

    My vote is for Kumbi and the dedicated vets who cared for him so lovingly.

  100. Claudia says:

    My vote’s for Carol, Kumbi and the awesome women of Saseenos Vet Clinic. Best of luck!

  101. Mike says:

    I vote for Kumbi’s Story.

  102. Sharon says:

    I vote for Kumbi. Carols choice to use these vets were invaluble to the care needed for all of her pets.

  103. Marion Brown says:

    I agree, we have had nothing but kindness and compassion in the passing of our last three Best Friends, Casey, Trixie and Hooch.
    They are a wonderful group of people, each and every one of them.

  104. David Johnson says:

    I vote for Kumbi’s story.
    We take our dog to the same wonderful vets that Carol took her dog Kumbi to, and we also can attest to the selfless devotion to the pets and their owners that we see in Kumbi’s story. Our dog has had several medical problems in her 4 years on the planet and Dr’s Booth and Bell have, with skill and tender loving care, brought her through all of them, keeping her a bouncy happy dog living life to the full. Everything that is done at their clinic is professional and painstaking, and I often wish that human doctors could be as giving and caring as these veterinary professionals are.

  105. H. Sukhiani says:

    The team at Saseenos Veterinary Services are exceptional. I’m delighted that they are being recognized.

  106. Robert and Rita Butterworth says:

    During the ten years, we have had Dr. Booth and her great associates, take care of our animals. During sickness and health. Also, at the moments, we all dread, as animal lovers!! All the staff, are exceptionally compassionate and caring. Last Sunday, was an excellent example, when we needed emergency care, for one of our cats. Dr. Booth, made herself available, at a moments notice. They are truly wonderful, at Saseenos Vet. We thank them all!!

  107. Paula says:

    I vote for Kumbi.. :-)

  108. Stephen and Patricia says:

    We have been clients of this clinic for over 20 years and have known Carol for almost that length of time (through obedience classes). Dr Booth and her associates over the years treat every animal as if it were their own. They take the time with all of their clients that is necessary to inform, assist, treat, and most of all to answer our questions. Carol’s story is a fantastic example (and many will attest, is also a typical example) of the type of caring service that we have become used to and that has kept us as clients for all this time.

  109. As there seems to be precedent for entering a comment on your own entry, I am doing so this morning, on the last day of voting for entries.

    We are competing with a 5-hospital network in Toronto, which has a population of some half-million in the metro area, also with another half-million or so metro area in Lake Worth, Florida, also with a sizable population in an area that has a well-known veterinary school in Raleigh, NC, and also with an area in Alberta that has a population considerably larger than ours.

    Yet, as I write this, we are in a strong, if much lower than the two leaders, third place, in an area with a mostly rural population (Sooke, B.C.).

    I am personally grateful for every comment left on Kumbi’s entry. Some of the comments touch my heart very deeply; they confirm and enhance Kumbi’s story.

    In this last day, I’d like to encourage any remaining comments that might be left today for Kumbi and his vets, and also, give heartfelt thanks for those already posted, including those without particular content.

    How does a person sing the praises of their vets? Well, in the way people are doing on all the entries. They are all lovely entries, and I’m pleased that Trupanion gave us the opportunity to sing our vets’ praises.

    I am touched by all the five entries; they are beautiful.

    I’d also like to thank Trupanion’s Stacy for putting this together, and Heather, who has been managing the entries while Stacy is off for a week. Each has answered questions for me.

    My friends – all of you – I know Kumbi is looking down from the Bridge, and thanking you all as well, and so is Kwali, whose comment I include here: Kwali says, “Thank you all; these are truly great vets – and staff as well.” Kumbi agrees. And so does Camellia the rescue Havanese, IFO (“identified Flying Object.”)

    For the remaining time, please have fun! Expressing our devotion for our fabulous veterinarians (and staff) is, indeed, fun – a LOT of fun.

    Thanks to Stacy and Trupanion for cooking up this idea!

    I’ll be posting the photo on Coherent Dog, and also the comments that have particular content, after the contest closes, tonight at 23:59:59, Pacific Daylight Time.

    Wed, 19 Oct 2011 07:06:58
    Carol and Camellia, Kwali and Kumbi

  110. Stephanie Gold says:

    I vote for Kumbi also, and triple that

  111. Lynn Hoover says:

    I vote for Kumbi and Carol too, for choosing such am exceptional veterinary practice.

  112. Update on Camellia: On 25 October, 2011, during an annual exam, Dr. Amanda Booth diagnosed my (large!) Havanese, Camellia, with atopy – a missing skin barrier made up of phytosphingosines,

    She prescribed a VERY expensive shampoo and spray from DOUXO. This stuff is only sold, in Canada, from vet clinics. Also, Dr. Amanda put Camellia on daily antihistamines, as needed – well, she needs three doses daily (generic Benadryl: diphenhydramine hydrochloride). She also gave me a choice of two other antihistamines, and I tried them, but found the generic Benadryl worked best.

    Reading on the DOUXO web site, I saw something to the effect that once the missing skin barrier had been replaced (probably a matter of five to six weeks), the frequency of baths and spraying could be reduced.

    So I checked this out with Dr. Amanda – who replied that with Camellia’s particular sensitivities, she wanted me to keep her on once-weekly baths and twice-weekly sprays.

    My policy with Trupanion for Camellia is for 90% coverage of eligible expenses, with no deductible.

    I tall ya, I never did anything so useful in my life to help my dogs as I did when I took out vet insurance with Trupanion. It turns out that I can put in claims as often as I need to, with no penalties. In our last exchange, Trupanion encouraged me to keep submitting claims, and you can believe, I will be doing that.

    So it’s not only my fabulous vets who are my Tru Heroes, but Trupanion, as well.

    Thank you, Trupanion; you make it possible for me to take really proper care of my sensitive Havanese rescue! She will be five years old on Sunday, 4 March, 2012.

    Camellia waves her glorious Magic Wand, in honor of my vets, Drs. Amanda Booth, Carla Bell and Ute Mannhardt – and Trupanion and its people.

    Fri, 2 Mar 2012 08:11:15 (PST)

    • Stacy says:

      Hi Carol,
      Thank you for updating us on Camellia. I feel that you, too, are a hero for rescuing this pup and giving her all of the love and veterinary care she needs! There are many people who would turn around and drop her right back off at the shelter so I commend your kind heart for taking the time to help Camellia.
      I am so glad to hear that we have been able to provide so much help for her condition and I hope that it continues to improve.

  113. Thanks for the compliments, Stacy. I REALLY enjoyed participating in your contest, because it gave me a special opportunity to sing the praises of my wonderful vets, and I’d never done that in public before. They are so deserving, and it was wonderful to see their smiles when they read my entry.

    I didn’t get Camellia from a shelter, though. I inquired locally of two breeders, in case they had a returnee, or an older dog they didn’t want to keep, and I got a response from Seantiago Havanese (Gail Dame), who works in conjunction with another breeder, Elite Havanese (Bev Dorma). (Bev’s daughter Emily recently took Best-of-Breed at Westminster, with her dog Reo – owner-handled – Emily is fifteen – I had had no idea I was trying to get a dog from such breeders and partners.)

    Gail had tried to place Camellia three times, and each time failed; SOMETHING, nobody was sure just what, had caused her such trauma that she was difficult to handle – hypervigilant. I thought I could help her, and didn’t have money to buy such an expensive dog, so I took her very gratefully; I have lots of experience with difficult dogs.

    Camellia has been my dog now for just over a year and a half, and she’s come a very long way; Gail is ecstatic! And she’s great with my vets, partly because the vets and staff are so good with her! (Not to mention her fabulous groomer!)

    My contract says if I dump Camellia, I have to return her to Seantiago Havanese. No way. They’re not getting her back; haha! (That is, I won’t be dumping her!)

    Recently, I discovered how much Trupanion people love animals; they can take their dogs to work with them, and they do!

    Fri, 2 Mar 2012 17:05:24 (PST)

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