He was discarded like trash.
On a hot summer day in late August, this beautiful dog was thrown from a car, dumped in a local park. I’m sure he was confused. He probably tried to run after the car, but could never catch them. You see, this boy was damaged. His legs didn’t work right. He couldn’t run, he could barely walk. He was a throwaway.
Bugatti, as he’s now known, was picked up by the local animal shelter and subsequently rescued by Oklahoma Alliance for Animals. Initial exams by a variety of doctors showed Grade 4 Patellar Luxation and other ills. In plain English, he had really bad knees and possibly bad hips, too. Given the severity of his diagnosis and what they believed to be poor prognosis for successful treatment, it was initially thought he should be euthanized as no one wants to see a dog suffer.
A friend reached out to me to take photos of Bugatti as she didn’t want him to just be forgotten. I got into the car for the 50 mile drive to Tulsa, thinking about this dog and how easy it is for our society to discard animals, especially when they’re not “perfect.” The more I drove, the sadder it made me and yet, more determined to find a solution for him.
When I arrived at the park, all I saw was a huge black dog with the cheerful attitude of a puppy. He was still wiggly, as puppies are, and given he was only a year old, had the manners of a slobbery pup. The first thing he did was flop on his side, expose his belly, and smack me with his huge paw! Throughout the photo shoot, he was quite the stinker – turning this way and that – totally ignoring what I wanted him to do. I laughed at his antics, wiped copious amounts of slobber off myself, and witnessed him take an impromptu dip in the nearby creek. He romped and played for the better part of an hour, wobbling to the creek to flop down and splash us both! Bugatti obviously didn’t know he was damaged and broken, he was simply having a ball.
My friend and I talked, and I told her I was thinking (which can sometimes be dangerous!), maybe we could help Bugatti! I asked her to forward me his medical records as I wanted to send them to a couple friends on the East Coast. Mariesa Hughes, Gremlin the Therapy Dog‘s mom and co-founder of The Mr. Mo Project, sent his records to their team at Cornell and within the hour, Cornell came back with a determination that Bugatti very well could be fixed! We were ecstatic!
Making a Plan
Next came the plan. Cornell recommended he get a CT scan which would give a better look at his cruciate ligaments and hips, which in turn would provide a better diagnosis. Much like the dilemma Esther the Wonder Pig faced when in need of a CT scan, there’s not a whole lot of them for animals around the State of Oklahoma. Several of us started working the phones and found out Oklahoma State University in Stillwater had a brand new 64-slice scanner that can do what we need. They were ready to book us that day, but then we ran into the funding issue. We need funds for Bugatti. So, we started making more calls. Based on initial estimates, Bugatti’s expenses could be:
- $120 CT consult
- $800-1000 CT scan
- $2,000-$3,000 Patellar Luxation (per side based on simpler fix)
- $3,000-$4,000 Patellar Luxation (per side based on complicated fix)
- $1,500-$2,500 Femoral Head Ostectomy (if he needs it for the hip)
- $10 a day for boarding at a local vet hospital
We launched a GoFundMe campaign to help fix Bugatti. If we could get the initial $1,120 to get his CT consult and scan done, it will give us a better idea how to proceed.
No dog deserves to be thrown out like yesterday’s trash. Bugatti didn’t deserve it and he should be given a chance to live a happy, long life. Please, let’s help this boy be the treasure we know he can be.
UPDATE 6/7/2020: We’re so happy to let you know Bugatti is living his best life up north! He’s had a time of it with all the therapy, team of specialists, and surgeries over the past two years, eventually losing one leg. But Bugatti’s not let it get him down; he has an awesome mom caring for him, canine siblings, and even a few equine buds as well! You can follow Bugatti on his very own social media accounts: Bugatti on Facebook and Bugatti’s Instagram.
UPDATE 9/29/18: We’re thrilled to announce Bugatti’s been taken by Big Dogs Huge Paws, a Colorado-based rescue. BDHP has access to world-class veterinarians who are dedicated to helping Bugatti walk again. He’ll make the journey to Colorado in a few weeks and we’ll keep you posted on how he is doing. All the funds we’ve raised, minus the percentage taken by GoFundMe, has been transferred to BDHP. Thank you for helping him! If you would like to donate more towards his surgeries, please direct your donations to Big Dogs Huge Paws at the links below.
Bugatti – From trash to treasure (link launches YouTube)
Watch Bugatti walk (link launches YouTube)
TAX DEDUCTIBLE GIVING: If you would prefer to donate directly to BDHP, please visit them online and designate your donation for Bugatti. Please note, if you donate through the GoFundMe, it is NOT tax deductible; donations to BDHP are given they’re a 501(c)3.