July 17th, 2023
By Savannah Verdon, Development and Engagement Coordinator II
With more than one pet at home, you expect a certain amount of squabbling among siblings. Whether they’re littermates or different species entirely, and despite the fact that your love and attention (and treats) are infinite, peace is not always an option. Maddie had one timid cat and one more aggressive cat; naturally, they sometimes got into fights. But when she came home to find her timid cat Dorito badly wounded, she was shocked that things between them had gotten so out of hand.
She had adopted Dorito and his brother when she was struggling with PTSD and nighttime anxiety, and being their mom had improved her quality of life a hundred times over. The tension between her two boys never seemed to go away though. She had tried diffusing calming pheromones in their space and giving her more aggressive cat a calming supplement, but neither seemed to make a difference. Anti-anxiety medication would be her last resort before having to rehome him, but for the moment, she had bigger concerns: Dorito had a large wound that Maddie could tell just by looking would not heal on its own.
The day after she found Dorito injured, Maddie took him to the veterinarian to assess the situation. They gave him antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medication, and scheduled him for surgery the following day. When Maddie got home, she made sure the cats were separated then set about finding some way to afford Dorito’s surgery.
Maddie worked as a server and bartender while she looked for more stable work and applied to graduate school. Her landlord increased rent the previous year and she had been treading water to make ends meet until her lease expired. After the initial visit to the veterinarian and with a month left before she could find a more affordable place to live, her budget was stretched to its limit. She called around hoping to find another veterinarian that could do the surgery for less. One low-cost clinic she contacted could perform the surgery for less, but because they only offered outpatient surgery and Dorito would likely need antibiotics and other follow-up care, they declined to take him in as a patient. Maddie wasn’t out of luck yet though – the low-cost clinic gave her a resource that might help her pay for Dorito’s surgery.
She reviewed each option carefully, taking note of which ones she qualified for and calling those she was unsure of. Her local animal control agency provided her with even more resources to consider. The RedRover Relief Urgent Care grant program was at the top of the list, and it was reassuring to Maddie that Dorito’s injury and treatment met the guidelines. She submitted her application and returned to the list of resources to move on to the next opportunity, hoping that just one grant was all they would need.
Before she could apply for any other assistance, Maddie got the good news that she had been approved for an Urgent Care grant which turned out to be all that they needed. Combined with money of her own she could put toward the bill, the grant meant that the only thing she had to worry about was a successful surgery and smooth recovery for Dorito.
Two weeks later, the whole ordeal was behind them. Dorito’s wound was fully healed and he was back to being Maddie’s sweet boy. While he and his brother would still need to resolve their differences, everyone was glad to see him feeling better:
“Dorito is doing awesome! Following surgery, he had a cone for two weeks to protect his stitches. I’m happy to share that he has completed his follow-up appointment, gotten his stitches out and cone off and is back to normal life! Dorito is the sweetest little guy and it means so much to our family that we were able to get help during this stressful time.”
From families like Maddie and Dorito and all of us here at RedRover, thank you! We couldn’t do it without the compassion and generosity of our FurEver Friends. ❤