Golden Retriever Rescue

GRR Teams Up With Lacey In Her Fight to Walk

Hello, my name is Lacey and I am eight years old. I came to Golden Retriever Rescue because I am not wanted by my owners as they are having a new baby. I have lived in the yard all my life without a bed or shelter and when I arrived at GRR I was filthy and my gorgeous golden coat and tail were full of knots. However, Wendy and Trisha looked on the inside and found a special quality in me that touched their hearts. They also noticed that I had difficulty moving around but I was so happy to be living in Goldie headquarters that I didn’t mind the pain. Life was certainly getting better by the moment.

Going through the assessment process at GRR (photos #1 and #2) I was bathed and groomed but a vet check, followed by x-rays, showed that I have the worst case of hip dysplasia the vet has seen in his career. GRR’s vet said that I should have my x-rays placed in a text book and here I was thinking that it was because of my cute smile. My x-rays show that I have no sockets for my hips and I have been taking the pressure on my knees causing one to deteriorate to the point that I need a knee as well. No wonder walking was so painful. Golden Retriever Rescue was then given the difficult decision to put me to sleep. Wendy and Trisha thought long and hard because there are so many Goldies that they need to help but they just couldn’t put an end to my life without me ever having the chance to know what it is like to be pain free and part of a loving family, so it’s new hips for me! GRR’s vet calls it bilateral hip replacement and I know that the recovery will be long and painful but it will be wonderful to walk and run again.

GRR has been in debt for over eight years and it seems that it’s only the depth that varies, but the surgery to give me two new hips will cost approximately $6,000 and Goldie Rescue wants to continue to help other Goldies that come to them for help. It’s not all about me you know!

GRR has found a special family to care for me during my long and difficult recovery and now they need to find the money to pay for my surgery and that’s where you come in. If you would like to donate towards my operation and recovery please go to the Donate page which you can find on the top right hand corner of the website or you can simply send a cheque to our address on our Contact page.

Thank you for reading my story and whether you decide to donate or simply wish me a speedy recovery I’m happy to know that there are people out there who care enough to hold me in their thoughts. That’s a whole lot more than I’ve experienced in my life so far.


UPDATE 20/09/2009:

Trisha and Wendy have been completely overwhelmed by the response to Lacey’s poster. Thank you to the many people who have donated towards her surgery and sent emails wishing Lacey a speedy recovery. If messages of hope for a good life can help then Lacey will come through this ordeal and go on to have a normal life. With donations still coming in GRR knows that we have enough to pay the vet bill so Lacey is booked in for surgery. She will be operated on by David Lidbetter at the Parramatta Veterinary Surgical Specialist Hospital, 16 Ross Street North Parramatta at 10.30am on Wednesday 23rd September, 2009. All of us at GRR involved with fund raising and Lacey’s care are both excited and nervous all at the same time. The surgery can’t come quick enough for Lacey as she is finding it difficult to cope between medication times and the dosage has been upped to help her deal with the pain. Please watch Lacey’s page as we continue to bring you updates on her progress.

UPDATE 23/09/2009:

Photo (#3) is of Lacey with her veterinary surgeon, David Lidbetter. Lacey's surgery took place at 10.30am 23/09/09 and we have been advised that the result was the best outcome we could have and Lacey was recovering well. Lacey has a new left hip and is coming to GRR headquarters tomorrow morning. Lacey will be receiving a right hip and a left knee eventually but it's all too much to have done at once. Her recovery from this hip operation will be six weeks and once she is walking well on her left leg Lacey will return for more surgery. It is the start of the long way back to recovery for Lacey. Thank you to the many people who have donated money and wished Lacey a speedy recovery. The donation total to date is $8,613.00!

UPDATE 27/09/2009:

Life for Lacey at the moment (photo #4) is very confining and will be for another six weeks. David Lidbetter advises that she was an excellent patient and is keeping up her end of the bargain with her strong determination to recover. She is already up and walking with support (photo #5) and would happily go for a ten mile hike if allowed. Lacey's strong spirit which sustained her through all those years of pain and appalling conditions stands her in good stead for a speedy recovery. She tolerates the crate with good grace and enjoys her short forays for toileting into the outside world several times a day. It never ceases to amaze us here at GRR how this beautiful breed has the ability to give humans another chance. Lacey never misses an opportunity to give a lick and have a cuddle whenever it is time to have a break from her crate. The donation total to date is $9,753.00!

UPDATE 28/09/2009:

Gail Boyd, GRR’s foster carer and Goldie Lady in Albury and her amazing bunch of friends (photo #6) as well as their Golden Retrievers braved the wind and rain to raise money for Lacey’s surgery by doing a tin rattle. Despite the elements all concerned had a great time and raised $600.00. Great work girls, Lacey and GRR are proud of you!

UPDATE 08/10/2009:

Although being confined to her crate most of the time (photo #7), Lacey is more animated these days, readily sitting up to greet all her visitors. She is barking in anticipation at meal times and joins in with the other Goldies to welcome the visitors who ring the door bell. Lacey has become a local celebrity with many of Wendy's neighbours greeting her as she goes on one of her toilet breaks. The next door neighbour, Don, takes an interest in all the rescues that arrive at GRR and Lacey thought that she would extend her break by visiting him (photo #8) while he weeded his front lawn. Not keen to leave her new found friend Lacey received lots of attention waiting for the camera to arrive.

Lacey continues to grow stronger and is putting her left foot to the ground when going out for short breaks from the crate. She continues to be a happy, well adjusted girl despite her circumstances and returns to her crate without a murmur. One wonders if we humans could remain so even tempered should we find ourselves in the same situation. Lacey returns to visit her surgeon, David Lidbetter, on Wednesday, 14th October. X-rays will be taken to see how the left hip is healing and depending on the outcome of the x-rays, new instructions on Lacey's exercise program will be given.

Donations for Lacey continue to arrive and to date the amount stands at a staggering $15,386.60. This means that Lacey, when she is ready, will be able to have all the therapy available to give her a normal life where she can walk and run without pain. From the man who donated the total amount for Lacey's right hip replacement, to the children who donated their pocket money and all those many, many people who prayed for Lacey's recovery, you have all given Lacey a second chance at life and she is ready for the journey.

GRR so often sees the other side of people when dealing with the rescues but you have all restored our faith in the human race. There's some great folk out there and happily they love Golden Retrievers. Watch out for Lacey's next update after her visit to Dr David Lidbetter.

UPDATE 16/10/2009:

GRR is still celebrating. Lacey visited her veterinary surgeon on the 14th October and passed her check up with flying colours. If it had been an exam she would have scored an A+. Lacey’s x-rays showed that the steel hip and joint had not moved from where it had been placed during surgery and that her bone had begun to incorporate with the steel hip. Fantastic news, all those hours in the crate have been worth it as her surgeon, David Lidbetter told GRR that this is the best outcome we could have for Lacey. David watched Lacey walking up and down the footpath outside his veterinary clinic and he was pleased to announce that there was no instability in the joint and Lacey was moving beautifully. Lacey is just happy not to be wearing her ghastly plastic hat.

GRR has to admit that we were a little apprehensive about Lacey’s check up and x-rays. So many wonderful people had donated and put their trust in GRR to care for Lacey and we hoped that we wouldn’t be letting you down. The wait for the x-rays was agonising but the result was so much more than we hoped. We weren’t the only ones smiling. Vet nurses Alyssa and Sarah could hardly conceal their pleasure at the results of Lacey’s x-rays and were quick to tell us the good news as soon as we walked into the waiting room. David was happy to impart the good news and give us Lacey’s ongoing exercise regime for the next five weeks until her next appointment. What a pleasure it has been to deal with David and his caring, committed team of vet nurses at Parramatta Veterinary Surgical Specialist Hospital. David’s generosity, skill and expertise along with the genuine love and concern he and his team show for the animals in their care assures us that Lacey is in excellent hands.

I’m afraid it’s back to the crate for Lacey for another three weeks but she will be allowed out several times a day for short walks which will become progressively longer. Already, Lacey is enjoying the extra freedom of her short walks and uses her time to meet the locals. It is ironic that Lacey came to GRR because her previous owners were having a baby as she loves children. Lacey walked past three adults to greet Tahlia and Liam (photo #9) and they didn’t waste any time in getting to know her. Her favourite walk is to drop off GRR’s mail at the local Newsagency and Post Office which is staffed by dog lovers who greet Lacey by name and give her lots of attention. Lacey’s world is slowly opening and it’s pain free.

Lacey’s next appointment is scheduled for the end of November.

UPDATE 28/10/2009:

Lacey is very pleased with herself as she has had a bath and grooming session and now everyone can see how beautiful she is on the outside as well as the inside. Her walks are extended each day and Lacey can easily handle walking around the block which includes a good sniffing session at the bush park at the end of the street. She is walking well and putting her left foot to the ground and taking the weight as she walks.

A visitor that Lacey is always pleased to greet is Jessica Wilmer (photo #10), an animal Chiropracter, who is a regular visitor to GRR's Goldies. Jessica is a great friend to GRR and many of our rescues have benefited from her skill. The look on Lacey's face says it all and she can't wait until Jessica returns for another session. Lacey and Jessica are sure to be firm friends by the time she has recovered from all her surgeries.

The crate is still home for Lacey but as her walks take up more time each day, the time she spends in the crate is less. She never complains about returning to her crate and is just one happy, contented girl. Lacey has even managed to shed a couple of kilos and this weight loss will help her hips.

UPDATE 25/11/2009:

Lacey is officially out of the crate and enjoying herself exploring the back yard, stretching out for a sun bake on the dog beds on the deck and going for walks each day. Lacey looks forward to her daily exercise as she has a high profile in the local area and knows that, as well as getting some much needed exercise to build up her muscle tone, she receives loads of cuddles and pats from everyone in the area. A regular stop is the local newsagency at Lugarno where GRR drops off the calendars and cards for posting. While we stagger under the pile of mail the staff rush out to greet Lacey (photo #11) while Lacey just about bounds into the newsagency as we approach the door. It's a regular mutual admiration session at the Lugarno Newsagency.

Visits continue from Jessica Wilmer, Lacey's Chiropractor, who is both surprised and pleased with Lacey's progress. Lacey's recovery is steaming ahead and these days she is all smiles as she is pain free and enjoying life. GRR continue to do the exercises each day set out for Lacey but while GRR are gently rotating Lacey's legs like a bicycle rider, she sees it as a great opportunity for a tummy rub and grins the entire time.

The total of donations for Lacey to date is an amazing amount of $26,235.99. Lacey is completely unaware that so many people have been so generous but she does know that she is pain free and her world is full of love and care.

UPDATE 5/12/2009:

Lacey’s appointment with David Lidbetter was scheduled for 9.15am on Monday, 30th November and GRR had been advised that Lacey should not eat or drink after her dinner on Sunday evening as a precautionary measure in case David decided to go ahead with surgery on Lacey’s right hip. Seems that only good news comes Lacey’s way these days and after an excellent report on Lacey’s left hip she was scheduled for surgery for a right hip replacement the same afternoon.

GRR received a call from the hospital Monday afternoon reporting that Lacey had once again come through surgery with flying colours and she was ready to return to GRR headquarters the following morning. The x-rays taken after surgery show that Lacey’s hips are now in perfect alignment and for the first time on Tuesday the 1st of December Lacey walked with the normal action of a dog. Yes, Lacey walked the short distance from the hospital to the car with confidence and everyone involved with her care at Parramatta Veterinary Surgical Specialists had smiles a mile wide. Lacey has become very popular with all the staff as she is a great patient, easy to handle and takes all that is done to her with good grace, as long as she gets a cuddle.

Lacey has attained celebrity status at the hospital and is welcomed with bright smiles, big hugs and lots of tummy rubs. She is a fantastic patient and on returning to GRR headed straight for the crate and settled herself in, plastic hat and all. Lacey surprised us when she started barking as the dog’s dinners were being prepared. Surgery the day before and demanding her dinner the next night. What a girl!

Life for Lacey has returned to the crate (photo #12), only going outside for short toilet breaks. In her usual patient way Lacey spends her time sleeping or watching the other dogs without a word of complaint. We envy her patience, her determination to recover and her ability to do whatever it takes to have a normal life. After all she has been through, she certainly deserves one.

Lacey’s next appointment for a check up is in two weeks.

UPDATE 14/12/2009:

Lacey’s two week post surgery check took place on Monday, December 14th and as usual, Lacey enjoyed all the attention and cuddles from David Lidbetter and his team of vet nurses and received yet another good report (photo #13). Time outs from the crate are eagerly awaited and whenever she has the opportunity for a toilet break she manages to drag out the time by sniffing every leaf, twig, rock and blade of grass before reluctantly turning for home and her restricted living quarters.

When Lacey arrived at GRR she weighed a hefty 38kgs and she is now a very svelte 27kgs. Her coat is growing back soft, thick and shiny and she is one gorgeous Golden girl. Lacey’s next appointment is the 13th January 2010 where she will be x-rayed to reveal the healing progress of her right hip. In the meantime it’s back to the crate for Lacey until the 13th January.

UPDATE 16/01/2010:

GRR and Lacey are old hands at the check ups and Lacey eagerly rushes in to greet the vet nurses who shower her with cuddles and tummy rubs. An anxious wait for the x-ray results but once again Lacey is proving to be a survivor. The healing is slower with the right hip but all is coming along nicely and Lacey will need more x-rays taken in two weeks to ensure that the replacement hip is incorporating with the bone. Lacey is now out of the crate for longer periods of time and is enjoying the freedom to wander around the yard. The crate is no longer in Wendy's dining room as Lacey is living with Trisha as there are no stairs at her home to interfere with the healing process. Lacey is enjoying life away from the crate for longer periods of time and she is all smiles as she chooses a bed to relax out of doors (photo #14).

Lacey's donation total is now over $34,000.00. Not only has Lacey touched the hearts of so many of you out there in Goldie land she has raised more than enough for all her surgeries and post operative care plus enough money for GRR to help other Goldies that arrive needing help. Lacey's next appointment is Wednesday 3rd February 2010.

UPDATE 07/02/2010:

Lacey is wearing a great big grin (photo #15) to match the smiles on our faces when we were shown the x-rays taken of Lacey's hips today. Lacey is once again a text book case, but this time it is for having a perfect pair of hips. The second hip has incorporated with the bone and David Lidbetter was so pleased with the results that Lacey wasn't the only one to be hugged.

The crate has been packed away and Lacey starts tomorrow morning on the first of her two, ten minute walks each day. She is enjoying the freedom to roam around the backyard and took time out for a photo opportunity with some Golden friends (photo #16). Instead of being the onlooker, Lacey is one of the gang and although no rough housing is allowed she is enjoying doing all those doggie past times like sniffing up a storm, gardens and the other dogs included.

Lacey is finally able to interact with the other dogs and just watching her walk around the yard takes your breath away. Lacey is looking forward to Jessica Wilmer's return so that she can enjoy those healing massages and get a tummy rub into the bargain. In the interim Lacey will just enjoy being a part of Trisha's family until May when we return to David Lidbetter to discuss the last surgery on Lacey's knee. Lacey has been through so much since September 2009 that GRR and David Lidbetter have decided that she should take some time out to just be a dog before deciding on the next surgery.

Lacey would like to thank everyone who rings, emails and cares about how she is going. She has come a long way from the unwanted dog handed over to GRR and the journey is almost over.

UPDATE 19/03/2010:

Hello everyone, it's me, Lacey, and I have some very exciting news. I have a family of my own. I told you it was exciting. Trisha and Wendy have been keeping you all up to date with what was happening in my world but I wanted to tell you all about my new family. It's funny how things work out! Trisha and Wendy were having their usual meetings when they decided that what I really needed, apart from my next knee operation was to be part of a family. Now don't get me wrong, Trisha and Wendy have been taking very good care of me, giving me cuddles, taking me for walks, giving me hydrobaths and providing all the aftercare necessary from my surgery, but I was like a welcome guest and I wasn't really anyone's dog. Trisha and Wendy decided that they would start looking for a family for me and it wasn't going to be an easy task finding the perfect family to suit all my needs but GRR are known for matching up Goldies to their owners so I knew, given time, Trisha and Wendy would pull it off.

Trisha and Wendy call it 'a meant to be' because the perfect home presented itself before Christmas, but being busy with the deluge of Goldies over the Chistmas/New Year period finding a home for me became secondary to finding homes for the many unwanted Goldies that arrived at GRR Headquarters during this time. At least I was cared for and loved. At GRR's fund raising stall held at Balmain before Christmas, Trisha and Wendy finally met a couple who had been quietly supporting GRR from the time GRR's first website appeared. GRR had sent many Thank You cards for the support that this couple had given over the years and finally GRR was able to thank them personally but it was a sad occasion as the couple advised that they had recently had to say goodbye to their much loved and very old Goldie.

Several weeks later when Trisha and Wendy were out and about picking up Goldies they received a call from this couple advising that they couldn't live without a Goldie any longer and asked if GRR had a Goldie that would suit them. After reading the answers to the questionnaire and receiving a report from the premises inspection that said 'give this couple a Goldie asap' Trisha suddenly realised that this home provided everything that Lacey needed. This couple lived not too far from Goldie Headquarters, there was Basil, an old Cocker Spaniel for company, but being a senior citizen wouldn't play too roughly, someone was at home much of the time, steps were replaced with ramps covered in faux grass as this couple's dogs are the centre of their life. Trisha and Wendy decided that if they had to choose the perfect home for me, this was it.

I met Ian and Belinda the following Sunday and said goodbye to Trisha and Wendy. I walked away with my new family without looking back which was just as well as Trisha and Wendy were helping themselves to the tissue box. They told me they loved me and would take care of my future surgical expenses but I needed more than what they could give me with their busy lives rescuing and rehoming Goldies. It's still not all about me you know!

Trisha and Wendy have learned over the years of rescuing Golden Retrievers that no matter how much they come to love and care for one of the dogs, their job is to find the best possible home for every Goldie that comes to them for help. They have done this for me. Finally, I have a home and family!

UPDATE 20/05/2010:

I had a great day at the RSPCA's Million Paws Walk on Sunday 16th May. GRR had set up a stall and asked my family (photo #19) to bring me along so I could say thank you to the many people who have helped me (photo #20) since I arrived at GRR. Everyone told me how lovely (photo #21) I look and could hardly believe how well I am walking. Well, that's because so many of you were generous with your prayers and donations and of course the generosity and skill of Dr. David Lidbetter.

Wendy and Trisha took me to visit David Lidbetter on Wednesday 20th May and we all decided to go ahead with the last of my surgeries, my left knee. The surgery went very well and David advised that I had a full maniscal tear and a complete tear of the crutiate. I am resting in a crate, again, but Trisha has ordered a soft head collar from the USA so I won't be so uncomfortable and I won't be leaving bruises over Trisha's legs and scrapes on her furniture.

I am being picked up by GRR on Friday 21st and will spend the first few days with Trisha before returning to my family. However, my recovery this time around, does not include a crate and I am to potter around for the first week before returning to David for a check up. My family will be taking me to David for the weekly checks but GRR will keep you all up to date with my recovery. I'm an old hand now at this recovery process. It's inconvenient and painful but the results at the end are worth every bit of what I have to endure.

UPDATE 03/06/2010:

I have been for two check ups since my knee surgery and once again, thanks to the skill of David Lidbetter, I am recovering very well. I had some bruising from the surgery so my family has been applying cream twice daily and on the second weekly check the bruising had vanished and David has told me (photo #22) that the bandages can be removed, but not the hat, and I can go for short walks every day. Monday 7th is hat removal day and although this soft collar is more comfortable than the ghastly plastic hat it will be nice not to have a restricted view of the world.

While I was at David's surgery I took the opportunity for a cuddle with Sarah (photo #23) and had a word to Shadow about being patient and quiet while he is in the crate. Shadow confided that he has been ripping up his bed for amusement during his long hours in the crate. Puppies, they are so naughty.

My next appointment is Wednesday 30th June and I will catch up with you then.


UPDATE 24/07/2010:

It was back to see Dr Lidbetter on June 30th for the final check for my knee surgery and being a straight A student where surgery is concerned I once again passed with flying colours. I am whole, admittedly with some titanium added, but that just makes me more of a Super Dog.

It has been an incredible journey with GRR starting in August 2009 when the call was made to Wendy to surrender me. To Kathleen who visited me in my home, thank you for recognising the pain I was suffering and urging GRR to get me out of there. To Kathleen’s parents who fostered me until the money was raised for my surgery, thank you for welcoming me into your home and caring for me until it was time for surgery. To Dr David Lidbetter, Sarah. Alyssa and his caring team, you gave me a miracle, you made me whole and I am forever grateful. To Trisha and Wendy who took care of me after two hip replacements and cruciate surgery and then found me the most amazing home, thank you doesn’t seem enough but when you think of me living with my family, being loved and cared for, know that you did this and as I have come to know you over the last year, for you, this is enough. To the hundreds of people who enquired about me, prayed for me, donated towards my surgery and rehabilitation know that it all helped and GRR’s work is done.

GRR rescue and rehome Golden Retrievers and this is what has been done for me.

Thank You Everyone.