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Bella's Emergency Surgery Fund
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An animal fund forYoda Bella Lugosi (and Kathy & Jim)

$4,710 given of $9,000 goal

Bella's Emergency Surgery Fund

Started by: Kathy Ocean

322 shares

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Around 11pm on April 2nd, we were given less than an hour to decide the fate of our much-loved canine companion, Bella. Following an ordinary happy day, while playing her favorite jumping game, Bella collapsed, her hind legs appearing to be paralyzed. The vet at the Santa Rosa 24-hour clinic gave us three choices: immediate surgery with a good chance of return function (and an exorbitant price tag); conservative treatment with a low success rate and high likelihood of chronic pain, paralysis and incontinence for the rest of her life. . . or euthanasia. We chose Door #1. Mere hours later, following an MRI confirming Bella had suffered an acute herniation of several discs, she underwent surgery at UC Davis. She faces a 6 to 8-month recovery and we face vet bills upwards of $9000. Bella has brought love and light to literally thousands of musicians, concert goers and vacation renters over her 10 years of life. We hope she continues to offer that medicine for many years to come, and are grateful for any support you can give.

Latest Update

Sitting pretty (waiting for dinner). The "Bella Benefit with singer-songwriter Dave Nachmanoff" is two weeks from tonight in Walnut Creek. More info here: https://www.facebook.com/events/241746513043815/

Posted by Kathy

June 16 at 5:58pm

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Jeannine Rossi — 20 hours ago

She’s looking good! Sorry I can’t make it to that fundraiser. I’ll be Cruising the Columbia River!

Jeannine Rossi — 20 hours ago

She’s looking good! Sorry I can’t make it to that fundraiser. I’ll be Cruising the Columbia River!

Jeannine Rossi — 20 hours ago

She’s looking good! Sorry I can’t make it to that fundraiser. I’ll be Cruising the Columbia River!

Our daily canine PT routine is well underway. In an effort to keep Bella from jumping on/off furniture and to keep her away from slippery flooring surfaces, I've dusted off my toddler childproofing skills. (Bella and I are currently visiting our yurt in the Sierra foothills. Note the camping pads serving as room barricades and the futon couch turned "ramp".)

Posted by Kathy

June 13 at 8:14pm

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Jeannine Rossi — 3 days ago

Wow! This has certainly been quite an ordeal but I know you wouldn’t have it any other way because you so love Bella

Jeannine Rossi — 3 days ago

Wow! This has certainly been quite an ordeal but I know you wouldn’t have it any other way because you so love Bella

Jeannine Rossi — 3 days ago

Wow! This has certainly been quite an ordeal but I know you wouldn’t have it any other way because you so love Bella

BELLA HAS BEEN FREED from her six weeks of 24-hr kennel confinement! Now we enter into the next 8-week physical therapy stage which in part will build up to three 20-minute leash walks per day. (Those who know me well have not even tried to conceal their chuckles when I seek sympathy on how that will impact my work habits.)

Posted by Kathy

May 23 at 11:46am

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Announcing the "Bella Benefit" Backyard Concert featuring singer songwriter Dave Nachmanoff (who also happens to be Al Stewart--Year of the Cat--sideman). Tickets available at https://DaveNach_BellaBenefit.eventbrite.com We are forever grateful to Dave for offering this and to our friends Marilyn and Jim for offering their Walnut Creek home for this event. Bella says, "Woof, WOOF, Roo . . ."!

Posted by Kathy

May 20 at 8:13pm

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Here's proof that "necessity is the mother of invention". In trying to figure out how to get Bella's prison (I mean kennel) off the ground, I noticed that our big cooler was about the right height and size. Once I swept it of spider webs and dragged it inside, I realized that not only was it the correct size, but if I strapped the kennel tightly to the cooler, I now had a kennel on wheels that could easily be moved around--inside or out--to keep Bella near her people. (The jailbird is pleased!)

Posted by Kathy

April 26 at 6:52pm

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YOUR DOLLARS AT WORK! It's been busy since Bella's release from UC Davis. Happy to report we are settling into the new routine and Bella is showing good improvement. On Day 1, we saw tiny tail wags. On Day 2, she could bear weight if we "arranged" her legs. Day 4 brought more vigorous tail wagging and some success sitting up. She stood for the first time and took her first wobbly steps on Day 6. On Day 8, she was stable standing up and attempted (with limited success) to scratch her ear with her hind leg. She celebrated with her first "roo"--her singing behavior--since her ordeal began. She grows stronger each day and we are finding creative ways to keep her occupied. (Future posts to follow.) Bella will remain on "kennel arrest" for another 4 weeks. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you to all of you.

Posted by Kathy

April 24 at 11:40am

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Bella is on "house arrest" and not too happy about it. I think our biggest challenge is going to be psychological. Being caged in an unfamiliar hospital is one thing. Being caged at home appears to be another. Keeping her stimulated and relatively happy is the task at hand. Hmmm . . .

Posted by Kathy

April 12 at 8:06pm

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Bella has been sprung from UC Davis veterinary hospital and is smiling! (She will, however, be in "kennel jail" for at least the next 4-6 weeks.) Happiness, none the less!

Posted by Kathy

April 11 at 2:22pm

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BELLA PEED TODAY. She's coming home tomorrow. The next chapter begins!

Posted by Kathy

April 10 at 10:23pm

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It was SO good to see our little girl yesterday! She’s now off her opioid meds and free of her catheter. Her appetite is good and she’s getting perkier. As soon as she pees on her own, she can come home. (This is the first time I can remember hoping for an “accident” in that department.) Mathew, her main caregiver, calls Bella the sweetest Chihuahua he has ever met. We concur!

Posted by Kathy

April 9 at 8:13pm

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Jeannine Rossi — 9 weeks ago

So happy she is doing so well!

Jeannine Rossi — 9 weeks ago

So happy she is doing so well!

Jeannine Rossi — 9 weeks ago

So happy she is doing so well!

Bella is showing slow, steady progress. Today her medical team is meeting to decide whether it’s time to remove her catheter. Bella’s ability to urinate on her own is key to determining her “release date”. In other news, we are being granted a 10-minute visit tomorrow evening! We will update you with pictures from that visit. In the meantime, here’s another one from yesterday.

Posted by Kathy

April 7 at 6:32pm

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MANY thanks to Mathew, a veterinary student at UC Davis and one of Bella's angel caregivers, for sending me a few pictures. Mathew reports that Bella is doing fine. Her main task for the coming days is to stay calm and quiet as as she continues the early days of her post-op recovery. And our job is to remain patient while she is away. We miss her!

Posted by Kathy

April 6 at 3:45pm

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THINGS BELLA TAUGHT US . . . Consider pet insurance! Here's an article that attempts to evaluate the relative value and gives a good lay of the land. https://www.consumerreports.org/pet-products/is-pet-insurance-worth-cost/

Posted by Kathy

April 5 at 8:35pm

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We received a call this morning from a senior veterinary student at Davis who said Bella’s within the "normal expectations" window for the first night post-op. He said she perked up when he checked her, licking his hand and drinking some water. We’re grateful to the Davis team who are obviously highly skilled, compassionate and dedicated. Being that it’s key to Bella’s post-surgical recovery that she remain calm and still, we are not allowed to visit--which makes total sense, but is hard, none the less. Today’s picture was taken this past January 24th on Bella’s 10th birthday. She was at attention awaiting a piece of her Birthday Burger.

Posted by Kathy

April 4 at 11:21pm

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Bella is out of surgery. The doc says all went smoothly. However, they removed not only the acute herniated material, but also a significant amount of material from a chronic condition. They say because of that her first couple days post op may be especially rough. (She may stay at UC Davis for up to a week.)

Posted by Kathy

April 3 at 1:57pm

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Show 14 more updates

63 Supporters

  • First Last (Not First? Sign Out)

  • Mojoduck3 days ago Best wishes Keep getting well Bella
  • Anonymous1 week ago
  • Coffygrinder1 week ago pics please
  • AManCalledSTEVE from Twitch1 week ago Bella looks like a sweet dog. Hope everything works out.
  • Anonymous1 week ago
  • Jeremy1 week ago Dog Bless
  • Anonymous1 week ago
  • Teletack1 week ago God Bless
  • Stephen M. Tighe3 weeks ago Wishing Bella a complete and speedy recovery. As a fan of Dave, I'm so glad he's able to help you with this. Best wishes for the fundraiser.
  • Stephen M. Tighe3 weeks ago Hope Bella recovers quickly and is back to her usual self. As a fan of Dave, I'm so glad he's able to help you. Best wishes for the fundraiser!
  • Show 53 more supporters