A friendly seven-year-old dog is in need of community donations to help send it to Victoria for surgery after its owners dropped it off at the Port Alberni SPCA, unable to afford to take the animal to the vet.
Fefe, a female Collie mix, is in need of a tibial-plateau-leveling osteotomy (TPLO) cruciate repair on its right rear leg.
“Because she’s such a large dog the cost of the surgery is $5,000,” said Irene Towell, Port Alberni SPCA manager. “We’re looking for donations so we can send Fefe to Victoria because this surgery can’t be done locally.”
In the last two months, Towell said, the SPCA has had an “astonishing” amount of animals brought in to them that needed a lot of care.
“In the last couple of months we’ve done an amputation on a cat and a dog, we’ve had two other dogs brought in to us with a broken leg and we had another dog brought in to us that needed this same TPLO cruciate repair,” Towell said. “We’ve basically just run out of medical funds for the time being. It’s really early in the year and we’ve exhausted our budget for now.”
Towell said for Vancouver Island, the SPCA has a large medical budget but still went over budget last year.
“It was an excess of $60,000 that went to medical. We’ve used all the funds that were available for now,” she said. “We have to spend money on procedures, like spay, neuter, vaccinations, that becomes a whole thing.”
Like Fefe, Towell said, more animals are getting dropped off at the SPCA when owners can’t afford the vet bill.
“It’s a trend that we’re seeing more and more. It impacts our budget drastically,” Towell said.
Fefe needs to have the surgery as soon as possible and thinking about what would happen if the dog was unable to get to Victoria is not something Towell wants to do.
“We’re keeping her comfortable on anti-inflammatory pain killers and she’s also on a special diet for joint support,” Towell said. “She’s a sweet dog, it would be a shame not to be able to adopt her into a new home because she needs the surgery.”
Anyone who wants to help Fefe can donate online at spca.bc.ca/medicalemergency or in person at the SPCA, 4936 Broughton St., Port Alberni.