May 8th, 2023
By Savannah Verdon, Development and Engagement Coordinator II
Jill’s hands were as full as they could possibly be with three children and three young German Shepherds at home. Three-year-old shepherd Luna and her brother Luke helped keep things in order by watching over their little brother, 1-year-old shepherd Kane, and playing with the kids until they were all thoroughly exhausted. But it wasn’t all work for Luna — this sweet girl could play with her ball long after everyone else headed inside for homework, dinner, or a snooze on the couch.
Because Luna positively lived for playing outside with her ball, Jill never expected that she would unleash her German Shepherd energy inside the home. They were all taken by surprise one day to find a portion of one of their curtains covered in slobber and chewed practically to shreds. Luna was the last of the three dogs they would consider the culprit, but she fell ill shortly thereafter, and they were faced with the possibility that she had swallowed some of the curtain.
They kept their fingers crossed that she would pass the piece of fabric and held onto their optimism that, if it wasn’t the curtain, it was just a passing illness. Luna was sick for two days before they decided this wasn’t something that would go away on its own, so they brought her to the veterinarian to find out for sure what was making their girl feel so terrible.
Luna’s x-rays confirmed what Jill had been worrying about for days. A piece of the curtain had lodged itself between her stomach and her small intestine, and there were no signs of it moving further along her digestive tract. The one time Luna had chewed on something she shouldn’t have had resulted in the worst possible circumstance, and if the fabric wasn’t surgically removed, things would get even worse.
There was never a question of whether or not they would get Luna’s lifesaving surgery. The kids missed her terribly, and her brother Luke was despondent without his sister at home. In fact, Luke was so attached to Luna that Jill couldn’t fathom how losing her might affect him. Losing her was simply not an option, so while Luna stayed at the veterinary hospital to receive IV fluids and other medication, Jill went home to figure out how they would pay for her emergency surgery.
Before the pandemic, Jill and her partner had been doing well financially. Not wealthy, but stable. But then their hours at work were cut, and later they were both unemployed. Even after they started new jobs, they weren’t able to work the hours they needed to get back on their feet. They were still struggling to catch up, and they didn’t have any extra money to cover the full cost of the surgery after paying for her x-rays. Jill discovered the RedRover Relief Urgent Care grant program through her local humane society and was very quick to submit an application.
Within hours, her application had been approved. She was so grateful to know that they would be able to save Miss Luna, and she called the veterinarian right away to have them proceed with the surgery. At home, Luke, Kane, and the kids all waited impatiently to hear that the surgery had been successful. Finally, their sister came home.
Two weeks and one day after her surgery, the only proof of what had happened was the missing corner of the curtain. Luna wasn’t back outside playing with her ball just yet, but Jill could see that this big sister was finally feeling good again:
“Luna is doing great! She is back to her talking self, daydreaming about being outside with her ball at all times and keeping her brothers in line! Thank you allowing us to be able to have our Luna back!! Our family will be forever grateful!!”
We are so thankful for opportunities like these to help families when they need it most, and we couldn’t have done it without kindhearted people like our supporters Thank you for putting your compassion into action for animals like Luna and for bringing this family from crisis to care!