Saving a Weimaraner: A Tale of Good Fortune and Compassion for a Canine Afflicted with a Large Tumor.
Tickled Pink Weimaraner Rescue sprang into action when they received a report about a Weimaraner at a high-kill shelter facing euthanasia. However, their initial shock turned to horror when they discovered the dog, who they named Gilbert Grape, had a large tumor on his underbelly making it difficult for him to stand. It’s unclear how long Gilbert had been suffering without medical attention or how he managed to survive. Keri Pink, a media relations volunteer with TPWR, shared Gilbert’s story with DogHeirs, detailing his rescue and ongoing recovery. Gilbert was found as a stray during a scorching Arizona summer day with a diseased tumor, leaving him confined to the concrete floor in the shelter’s isolation section.
Due to the massive grape-shaped growth on his chest, we affectionately dubbed him Gilbert Grape. We rushed Gilbert Grape to a veterinary hospital that specializes in 24-hour care where the veterinary team determined that he urgently needed blood transfusions and intravenous catheter stabilization before the surgeon could attempt to remove the tumor and save his life. The price for the diagnosis, stabilization, and surgery was approximately $7,000. Despite the high cost, rescuing Gilbert Grape was a no-brainer for the rescue volunteers and veterinary staff. However, there exists a delicate balance between the life-saving treatment that a private pet owner can provide for their animal and the treatment that a rescued dog deserves. Although private pet owners have the freedom to make their own choices, rescues rely on the support of the public.
Gilbert’s age and health history were not entirely clear, but his blood test results showed mostly normal readings, with the exception of a high white blood cell count due to an infected tumor. The team estimated that he was approximately seven years old, and while his condition seemed serious, they noticed a spark of hope in his eyes. They knew that providing him with a chance would require support from the public, but they were determined to give him every opportunity to recover. With Gilbert’s resilience and the team’s dedication, they were optimistic about his future.
In the interest of the dog’s health and well-being, we sought the advice and expertise of several veterinary professionals and surgical experts. With their guidance, we were able to determine the best possible course of action for the dog’s treatment. We also launched a social media campaign to inform our Facebook followers about the situation, which resulted in a significant influx of donations. Thanks to the support of our followers, we were able to provide the dog with the necessary care and treatment it needed to make a full recovery. We are grateful for the dedication and generosity of our supporters, which made a tremendous difference in the life of this precious animal.
After undergoing a follow-up medical evaluation, Gilbert’s surgical staples were removed and he was given a clean bill of health. However, the tumor had taken a toll on his body, resulting in a loss of muscle mass and physical strain. His rear legs were ataxic, and he lacked muscular mass throughout his body, causing an awkward gait. Despite these physical challenges, Gilbert’s foster father was overjoyed to see his charming and humorous personality shining through more and more every day. Gilbert will soon undergo a physical therapy program consisting of manipulations, massages, and water treatments to aid in his recovery and improve his mobility.
Gilbert’s story touched the hearts of many, and it is likely that numerous adoption requests were granted as a result. Although he is not yet available for adoption, Gilbert’s future looks promising. Thanks to the love and dedication of his adoptive family, he has been thriving after being rescued a year ago. Despite being diagnosed with hip dysplasia, his family installed a pool so that he could receive regular water therapy. Gilbert has also bonded extremely well with his new family.