In today’s veterinary blog, when Gidget, the toy poodle, experienced a second eye disease in as many years, the Audrey Pet Foundation helped her family with veterinary expenses to reduce pain and restore a good quality of life to this beloved pet

Gidget is an apricot toy poodle who will celebrate her 12th birthday next month. Her people are planning a big celebration for this little dog who just recently overcome glaucoma—her second major eye disease.

In 2012, the Barlows were referred to Dr. Carrie Breaux, WestVet Veterinary Ophthalmologist, to address Gidget’s cataracts. Audrey Pet Foundation works with WestVet specialists to help families cover veterinary expensesDr. Breaux successfully performed surgery and restored Gidget’s eyesight.

Following that procedure, they sent us a thank you message that read in part,

“We cannot thank you enough for giving our beautiful little girl, Gidget, back her eyesight. We are so lucky you were recommended to us. We could feel the compassion from you and your staff during our very first visit for consultation. Immediately, we knew we had the right doctor with the right staff in the right clinic…  Dr. Breaux, you and your staff also handled Gidget’s parents with aplomb. The extent of the kindness and caring was outstanding. We are so happy there are doctors like you (and so is Gidget)…

Thank you, again, for your superior knowledge, professionalism, and hard work.”

Unfortunately, Gidget’s eye issues returned, this time in the form of glaucoma. Though the Barlows diligently treated her eyes—administering medicated eye drops three times a day for two years—her condition continued to deteriorate.  

“Despite everyone’s best efforts, we were unable to manage this medically,” Dr. Breaux said. “Gidget lost her vision and was experiencing a lot of pain. This necessitated eye removal for her comfort and quality of life.”  

The Barlows are retired and on a fixed income and they had exhausted their resources with Gidget’s cataract surgery. Wanting to ease her discomfort, they turned to the Audrey Pet Foundation for help. Their application for funding was approved. The APF funds, combined with donated services from Dr. Breaux and WestVet, enabled the Barlows to pursue the surgical procedure to remove Gidget’s eye.

Recently the Barlows were visiting WestVet for a follow up exam—one that Gidget passed with flying colors—and they told us that she is a new dog. Audrey Pet Foundation & WestVet combine to help families cover the veterinary specialty expenses pets may need.Even though she is now blind, she is much happier and pain free. Mrs. Barlow says Gidget has her energy back, gets around their home easily, is now eating on her own, and sometimes it’s easy to forget she has a disability at all.

“She comes and goes as she pleases through the doggy door. When the doorbell rings, she jumps right up and navigates her way quickly to the door with any hesitation,” Mrs. Barlow said. “Sometimes I forget she’s blind!”

The Barlows keep a close eye on Gidget, particularly when she is outside. However, they have an assistant! Her housemate, Sophie, a 10-year-old silver poodle, will sometimes guide and help Gidget out through the pet door or back inside.  Even with Gidget’s recent setback, the Barlows say they are happy that they pursued the initial cataract surgery. “Dr. Breaux gave our sweet girl two more years of eyesight,” Mrs. Barlow told us. “That gift is priceless to us, and we are forever grateful.”

The Audrey Pet Foundation (APF) mission is to provide assistance for veterinary emergency and/or specialty care for financially disadvantaged pet owners. Eligibility for assistance is based on a sliding scale of income and household size. Applicants may receive a discount of up to $1200 on their veterinary expenses and care at WestVet.

The Audrey Pet Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Your generous donations are tax deductible. 100% of all financial donations go directly into the fund that provides specialty veterinary care to families in the Treasure Valley. You may read other success stories and make a donation on their website HERE.

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