Eight-year-old mini pincher Rocky wasn’t feeling so good. His mom took him to the vet, and the test results came back positive for diabetes. The bills started to pile up, as Rocky needed insulin, blood work, syringes and more vet visits. What a nightmare!
Even though this wasn’t such great news, Rocky’s mom is now feeling quite relieved. She and Rocky are the first low-income family approved to receive help from Phinney’s Friends’ Liam’s Fund — our newest fund, which aims at helping those who need financial assistance with treatment for their diabetic dogs.
Rocky officially launched Liam’s Fund, recently established with resources from The Deirdre Dickinson Memorial Fund, in honor of Ms. Dickinson’s nephew, Liam.
Canine diabetes is a disease that, like in humans, can be controlled. But unfortunately it can get expensive very quickly, with all the supplies, medications and testing needed to keep the dog’s health stable. In just one year, the expenses can amount to a few thousand dollars according to Daniela Caride, President of Phinney’s Friends.
“We are so proud that Phinney’s Friends has been chosen to receive these funds and have a chance to help a group of pets who need so much ongoing financial help,” says Daniela. “Managing chronic diseases like diabetes is one of the biggest challenges for low-income pet owners who love their companion animals and want to provide the best of care to their best friends.”
For more information on canine diabetes, including symptoms and causes, check this link about common dog diseases by the ASPCA.
If you would like to make a donation towards diabetic dogs, please contact us or simply make a donation to support this very important cause. Rocky is the first of hundreds of dogs we’d like to help stay safe and happy in their loving homes.
Helping Phinney’s keep animals and their owners together is easier than you think. The answer to saving a doggie’s life or helping a sick kitty may be as close as your driveway or the desk right next to you at work!
Get kids involved with a lemonade stand!
As the weather gets nice and warm, how about getting your kids to spend time outside while helping others by holding a lemonade stand for Phinney’s? Kids can study-up on what Phinney’s Friends does, make signs, and sell lemonade and treats. They’ll have fun, spend time learning about an inspiring organization and describing it to others, and help Phinney’s at the same time. It’s a win-win!
Find out if your company matches contributions
Did you know that, on average, 1 in 10 companies in the United States match employees’ contributions? By simply completing a matching gift form, you may be able to double or even triple the impact of your donation to Phinney’s Friends with your company backing you up. If you volunteer with us, your employer may also make a donation to Phinney’s as a way to recognize your hours of volunteering or your ongoing support.
Find out if your employer has a matching gift program. All you have to do is ask!
Earlier this year, Geraldine noticed that her 12-year-old cat, Lucy, had a swollen ear. Worried, Geraldine took Lucy to the vet, who diagnosed her with an aural hematoma — a collection of blood under the skin of the earflap. Geraldine, who is semi-retired and low-income, was unsure how she was going to pay the roughly $1,000 vet bill. “It was a very stressful time,” she says.
Determined to find a way to help Lucy, Geraldine took to the Internet to find someone who might be able to help. While many of the organizations Geraldine contacted did get back to her, it was Phinney’s Friends that came to her rescue and footed the bill.
Lucy’s surgery was a success, and after a few days rest at the vet’s office, she got to go home. Of course, Lucy made a fuss about wearing an Elizabethan collar, commonly referred to as the “cone of shame”, while she healed. Refusing at first to eat or drink because of the unwelcome accouterment, Lucy “acted like a baby about the whole thing,” says Geraldine. Luckily for both Lucy and Geraldine, the e-collar was soon taken off, leaving behind just a hairless patch of skin as a reminder of the ordeal.
Geraldine has since told others about her wonderful experience with Phinney’s Friends, which helps people in Massachusetts and their pets stay together, and especially about Phinney’s Emergency Program, which helps pets with fostering, boarding or veterinary treatment for beloved pets just like Lucy.
Geraldine says, “I was so happy when I was told that Phinney’s would pay for the surgery. It was better than winning the lottery! It was one of the best gifts I ever got.”
Sarah is a Phinney’s volunteer who every week walks Rocky, a sweet Maltese mix who just turned 12. She also trains new dog walkers for Phinney’s Friends when the organization needs to introduce a new human to a dog in need of walks.
But the task at Phinney’s that Sarah loves the most is definitely taking Rocky for regular strolls around the neighborhood, which has become a habit since since August of 2015. She also loves hanging out with Rocky’s parents and helping them take care of their beloved dog.
And even though, like in any relationship, it took her a little while to bond with Rocky, the two have developed a wonderful relationship. But since they’ve bonded, Sarah has gotten to know him really well, including some of his adorable little habits. Rocky strokes his face with his paws when he wants to be pet, and he’s always willing to roll over for a good belly rub. He loves being the center of attention, and is always excited to see Sarah when she arrives.
Rocky is an eccentric little guy who sometimes barks “for no reason,” she says, or because he’s hearing things humans can’t hear. He is always up for a good game of fetch and loves curling up on Sarah’s lap after a long walk.
Sarah is thrilled to be a Phinney’s volunteer, and is especially grateful that she is able to spend time with Rocky. She is a dog lover but lives in an apartment that doesn’t allow dogs. Sarah is a native New Yorker who has been living in the Greater Boston Area since 1983. She is the full-time caregiver for her mother and an active proponent of animal and human rights, and she is also a vegan. While doing research on different organizations she could volunteer with in the summer of 2015, she came across Phinney’s, and was excited about the prospect of helping both people and pets at the same time —and, of course, getting to spend time with dogs!
She thinks that anyone who wants to be part of an organization that helps both people and their pets, and helps them stay together, should consider volunteering with Phinney’s Friends.
For anyone on the fence about whether to volunteer, Sarah thinks that if they enjoy being with animals and want to help people, it’s a great way to do both. Sarah loves working with Phinney’s and was honored and surprised that she was nominated for this Volunteer Spotlight article. In light of all the valuable work she does with Rocky, she sure deserves the recognition for all her efforts.
“Sarah is loyal, compassionate, responsive and trustworthy,” says Daniela Caride, President of Phinney’s Friends, who first talked to Sarah over the phone when she was considering volunteering in the summer of 2015. “She has the qualities that make Phinney’s Friends possible, and we are delighted to have her on our team.”
We at Phinney’s – and Rocky too – thank you, Sarah!
Looking to get out and enjoy the beautiful summer weather, without leaving man’s best friend at home? There are tons of fun activities that you can do with your dog this summer.
In case you don’t have the latest edition of ModernDog, they have a great list of 17 Ideas for Summer Fun (that, of course, include Fido). They also offer a few great tips on how to keep your pup cool while spending time outside.
Did you know you may need to apply sunscreen to your pup when he is outside? Check out Nylabone’s tips on spending summer days outdoors with your pup, which also include summer-friendly products.
Hiking, diving, and swimming aren’t just for people! Dogs love the same outdoor activities we do. Read up on Cesar Millan’s outdoor exercise activities for people and pups!
Kids aren’t the only ones who love playing in the sprinkler; dogs love it too! And check out PetGuide, which gives great tips on fun things to do with your dog over the summer, including road trips and even doggy yoga (downward facing dog, anyone?!?).
If you love to travel, consider going camping with your pooch. BringFido.com provides a helpful guide to pet friendly campgrounds, including rates, maps, guest reviews and photos. So grab your dog and hit the great outdoors!
Macy, happily lounging on the couch
Macy is one lucky feline. His mom — someone Phinney’s Friends helped in the past with an emergency — suddenly passed away, and Macy, whom we loved very much, ended up in a shelter. Phinney’s Friends came to the rescue, to honor the mom’s wishes of a long and happy life for Macy, and placed him in permanent foster.
Macy joined Daisy the cat with Phinney’s foster mom, Elizabeth, who has been taking in cats from Phinney’s for many years. The three of them are now a happy team, and they are so grateful that there is a special organization like Phinney’s to take care of forlorn cats when the need arises.
“Macy’s a doll and a charmer,” Elizabeth says. “It’s like he recognizes how lucky he is!”
Daisy, lovin’ life
Elizabeth is a prime example of many of Phinney’s Friends volunteers. Years ago, she was on the receiving end of Phinney’s generosity. She was a regular client, getting ongoing care for her cats and dog, and Phinney’s also helped her with emergencies. Her dog, Morty, had a kidney blockage, and Phinney’s located a vet willing to perform the surgery at a discount and footed the bill entirely.
Then Elizabeth became a volunteer by not only fostering cats who needed a loving home, but also by screening people who needed emergency help for their animals. Since then, Elizabeth has fostered many cats for Phinney’s.
Daisy, Elizabeth’s other foster kitty, is an orange tabby who had a chronic medical condition that her owner was unable to control. Ultimately, she realized that Daisy would be better off with someone that could meet her medical needs. Elizabeth stepped in, and Daisy is doing wonderfully under Elizabeth’s care.
Daisy, however, seems to have “mixed feelings” about Macy sometimes. She doesn’t have a lot of patience for Macy, since she’s years older than him. Daisy is content to snooze, while Macy would rather play.
Once in a while, though, Daisy lures Macy over, then whacks him with her paw. Then she’ll yelp like he’s trying to beat her up! Like most siblings, these two have a complicated little rivalry going on. But for the most part, they are happy to share their loving home with Elizabeth and each other.
All animals are special in their own way, and some — like Macy and Daisy — really touch our hearts. Taking older cats who have unfortunately been left without a home through no fault of their own is such an important part of Phinney’s work, and Phinney’s is so grateful to Elizabeth for providing the perfect environment to Macy and Daisy.
Thank you, Elizabeth!