Please help this young blind labradoodle...a message from The DOODLE MESSENGER

 Sadly we have another Doodle in Need on the DOODLE MESSENGER.

Mocha's story is very poignant...the idea of a young blind labradoodle hurts my heart.

He was a rescue, who lost his sight, then regained it with the help of his new family but now has lost most of his regained vision. Here is what his family has to say:

Mocha is a 3-1/2 YO Labradoodle that was dealt a tough hand from day one. At 6 months old, a back yard breeder dumped him and his brother at a shelter claiming they were gun shy and would not hunt. Both dogs were non-socialized, fearful, and emotional wrecks. They were considered unadoptable and scheduled to be euthanized. As a foster family for we were asked to rescue Mocha. When we got Mocha home (our first foster dog) we discovered he was badly undernourished, had never been on a leash, and was wary of everything human. This was not your ordinary rehome foster situation. Despite all of Mocha’s anxiety and self-confidence issues, ironically he was not gun shy.

During Mocha’s first two months with us we worked about two hours per day building Mocha’s confidence through obedience training and perimeter walks around one of America’s largest off-leash dog parks. Mocha made amazing progress and eventually - we became Foster Failures and knew we wanted to keep him.
Mocha thrived for the next couple years, growing to 100 lb. of lean muscle. He is very easy to train, responds incredibly well to positive reinforcement, and he does not have an ounce of aggressiveness. He loves everybody and everything. There was nothing more rewarding than seeing this 27” (withers) previous social misfit doing flying leap ball catches and bringing it back for more… until he lost his sight.

Around 30 months of age- in June 2012 - Mocha could no longer catch the ball and had to rely on his nose and ears to find it… even if it took 10 minutes of working the field to get it done. We took him to a veterinary Opthamologist who told us he had genetic cataracts and was 80% - 90% blind.

In 2009, I was forced to close my home improvement business and lay off 21 people because of the drop in home values and the decision of most banks in 2007 to stop financing home improvements. Despite that my income had dropped over 65% since 2007, we saved enough over a year to pay for his $4,000 cataract surgery on May 3, 2013. We brought him home after his successful surgery and cried in joy watching him rediscover his world.

In a follow-up exam one week after surgery, Mocha’s surgeon told us that it appeared his right eye had a slight retinal detachment and if left untreated, he would go blind again. Either we had to hope for a natural miracle or he needed additional surgery in that eye to save his sight. In his next exam a week after that, his right eye had gotten worse and his left eye had also developed a slight detachment. When the retinas detach, the blood supply to the nerves is cut off and the nerves will die unless the surgery is done quickly. After our third weekly follow-up exam, our vet recommended immediate surgery to try to save his eyesight. She gave us the name of a veterinary retinal surgeon who we contacted immediately.

After discussing Mocha’s case with the retinal surgeon, he gave us three options: Do nothing and Mocha will likely go completely blind in both eyes in a short period of time; Do a full $4500 retinal reattachment surgery in both eyes at the surgeon’s facility 7 hours from our home; Have Mocha’s current Opthamologist do a $1500 retinal “spot weld” with a laser to try to save the sight in his left eye. If the left eye surgery is successful, it might be effective for a few years. After paying for Mocha’s cataract surgery, we don’t have the money to put toward another surgery. It is killing us that he regained his eyesight for a few weeks only to lose it again, so we have committed to the third option and will borrow to pay for it. That surgery will be done on Monday June 3. If we are lucky enough to receive donations in an amount that would cover the cost of the full retinal reattachment surgery, we will have that done. However, we only have about a week to make that decision or it will be too late.

Mocha is currently at home under restricted activity due to his cataract surgery. He is possibly the best dog healthcare patient ever. When it’s time for his eye drops and pills, he comes with wagging tail and sits quietly without a command while I put in the drops, and he opens his mouth and swallows his pills without trying to spit them out. And then he looks at the treat jar. When we go to agility training with our Aussiedoodle, Mocha comes into the ring with us and sits quietly by the exit until we are finished. Our trainer has offered to adopt him to use as an example of perfect dog manners. He has survived human neglect and abuse and came out as one of the most loyal, loving, and trusting dogs we’ve ever had. This dog has been through so much. Please help him to keep the sight he regained.

Wouldn't it be a lovely tribute to the doodles we have lost recently to help this almost-blind doggie be able to see again?

For information on donations, go to the Doodle Messenger page:

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