Thursday, June 13, 2013

Duffy's Knee Surgery: Can You Chip In?

by Cori Bowhay
My beautiful, sweet dog, Duffy,  had to have surgery.

She had completely ruptured her ACL and damaged the meniscus in her knee.

Duffy is only 3 years old, and VERY active. 

Since her injury she has been unable to run, jump and play the way she normally would. 
She couldn't even walk on her injured leg, and hopped around on 3 legs only. 
Every day it broke my heart to watch my best furry friend hop around. She often looked up at me with sadness in her eyes, knowing that she cannot play anymore.

What was the most heartbreaking for me and my mother is that we cannot afford the surgery to help our little friend get back to her active lifestyle.
Duffy loves new adventures and meeting new people. She is hyper and crazy and very friendly. Her quirky personality makes her even more loveable. She is incredibly smart and knows dozens of tricks that she loves to show off ay any chance (because she knows there's a treat in it for her!)

Duffy is my best friend and makes my life better. 

When I am happy, she is happy; when I am sad, she is sad. There is nothing I like better than seeing her head peeking out of the curtains in the window as I pull in the driveway. When I finally get in the door her tail wags so fast you can't even see it. There is no greater feeling than having your best friend greet you at the door everyday when you get home.
When we first brought Duffy home as a puppy, I was dealing with a severe depression, and working with Duffy to train her and spend time with her completely changed my life. 

My depression improved, and I began to enjoy the things I loved again. Because she is so active, I started hiking again-- something I hadn't done since high school!

My mother and I want to do whatever we can to help our friend to get her life back. 

Our financial situation has changed when my mother became unable to work due to serious illness. She has been unable to work for nearly two years. We are solely relying on my income to pay our mortgage and all of our bills. Normally, we manage to scrape enough together each month to pay our bills, but with huge unexpected vet bills we cannot.
This is why we are asking for your help.

Our vet thought it would be best to have the surgery as soon as possible, to prevent further damage. Being unable to afford the surgery, we were concerned.

However, our kind vet is allowing us to defer most of the payment until the end of June. 

So now the crunch is really on. Duffy is resting and recovering, and we are trying to raise funds to help cover the cost of her surgery.

Duffy's surgery is called Modified Retinacular Imbrication Technique (MRIT), which involves placing an implant in the stifle (knee) joint to stabilize the motion of tibia and fibula, preventing abnormal motion that is normally prevented by the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL). Essentially this procedure substitutes the function of the original ligament using a combination of nylon sutures and natural scare tissue developed during the healing process.

Editors note: this procedure is more commonly known as lateral suture

There are other surgeries that are considered more effective-- like the TPLO-- however the MRIT is the most economical and the least invasive option.

This is because the implant is located on the outside of the join capsule and it doesn't require breaking and re-positioning of bone. For us, the MRIT was the best option based on price and recovery time. Without a doubt Duffy will develop arthritis in the joint, but with the surgery she will be able run and play again!

The amount we are asking for is based on:
Initial Veterinary Visit, X-Rays, Metacam- $440.63
Surgery, Pain Killers & Anti-biotics- $2446.12
Follow-Up and Staple Removal- $202.65
6 Month Supply of Metacam (Recovery Period)- $725.34
"Geri-Panel" Blood Test- $202.65
Total so far: $4017.39
(doesn't include the special food she is supposed to eat to manage her weight while she is unable to be active.)

Can you help?
Here is the link to the fundraiser, The Friends of Duffy.

If you would feel more comfortable donating directly to the vet's clinic on our behalf, please phone Animal Clinic West

Tell them you would like to make a payment towards Duffy Bowhay's Surgery on behalf of her owner Cori. 


Any money raised that we don't need for the cost of Duffy's surgery and medication and recovery will be donated to the Calgary Humane Society.


  1. Duffy looks like such a sweet dog! If you don't reach your goal, you should research canine ACL braces. I had luck with WoundWear's brace. I'm not sure about the whole torn meniscus thing, but it helped my lab get back into tip-top shape when she tore her ACL and was a lot cheaper than surgery. Just a thought! Good luck to you both!! :)

    1. Hi Nina, Duffy has already had the surgery, the vet had given then an extended time to pay.