It was April of 2000 when a three-week old puppy was left in a box in front of a veterinary clinic in Puerto Rico. The puppy had a one inch wound on his neck, but was otherwise in good condition. My sister who worked at the clinic brought him home to continue his care, since he was so young. When I saw him, it was love at first site! From that moment forward I helped in his care, my sister would take him to work with her during daytime and I would take care of him during night time. After a couple of weeks, his wound healed and he was eating dry food all by himself! At that time we had two more dogs in the house and a third one was just more than we could handle, so we decided to find him a good adoption home. I was sad to see him go but comforted by thinking that he would have a good family looking out for him.
Two days later my sister came home along with the puppy, unfortunately his adoptive parents' other dog did not get along with the new puppy and attacked him. The owners thought it was best if we could find him another home.
When I saw him again, I knew I was not going to be able to let him go for a second time and named him Grolsch! Luckily, our other dogs accepted him and he immediately bonded with his sister Baileys and cousin Suzanne.
We've become inseparable and I take him with me to almost every place I go. He sleeps in my bed, has lots of toys, a balanced diet, a minimum of 2 veterinary visits a year and a lot of love. He loves playing with tennis balls, car rides, runs in the dog park, playing with his sister and exercising with me while I’m walking, roller-blading or cycling. He’s very active, happy, friendly, smart and has a big love for life. We moved to Florida in 2003 and later that year his cousin Suzanne passed away.
On February 12, 2010, I received the worst news of my life when he was diagnosed with Canine Lymphoma. I was told that without treatment, he could live two or maybe three months at the most. The other option was chemotherapy. He’s not ready and I’m not ready to let my baby go, not without a fight but I wanted to make sure that he was not suffering and could continue living his happy and active life.
Grolsch deserved a chance, so I decided to meet with an oncologist at Florida Veterinary Specialist, Stacy Santoro, DVM. She was very knowledgeable and explained lymphoma and all the treatment options available. She was also very warm and caring to my dog's needs, that’s a great combination and makes her an excellent caretaker.
I learned that lymphoma is a very aggressive cancer but is also very treatable, even if it doesn’t have a cure; an aggressive treatment could give Grolsch more than just two months of good quality life with minimum side effects. So chemotherapy became the best option but was also extremely expensive. When I expressed my concern about the costs in my current financial situation, she referred me to Frankie’s Friends.
I was diagnosed with cervical cancer in April 13, 2006, and after surgery was cancer-free for two years. Since I am a cancer survivor, I know how difficult is to learn to live with this condition and to fight it everyday. Grolsch and I are best friends and now we are closer than ever and will fight cancer together, another bonding experience for us.
Thanks to Dr. Santoro I had the opportunity to learn about Frankie’s Friends and their mission. On February 18, 2010, I spoke with Bonni, who told me that the Cure Canine Lymphoma project of Frankie's Friends will be able to help me pay for Grolsch's care. This news brightened our lives!!! Knowing that I am going to be able to provide my best friend the treatment he deserves, is the light at the end of the tunnel. What a great feeling!!! It would have been impossible for me to afford the treatment without Frankie’s Friends' support. Thanks to Frankie’s Friends, Grolsch has a chance!!!
Thank You Frankie’s Friends, thank you very much.