Cause for Sb Paws wrote -
Lawrence's story encapsulates what our rescue - Cause for San Bernardino Paws - is about: taking in abused, neglected & forgotten companion animals in the midst of San Bernardino's bankrupty. As our city struggles, animals come last in the long list of our community's urgent priorities. In June 2014 we met Lawrence at San Bernardino City Shelter, a scarred, black Pitbull covered in plaster-based paint that had to be shaved off. He may have lived in a warehouse or a junkyard, then escaped. Whatever his past, we took him into our home and taught him to trust, sleep on a bed, and just be a dog. He blossomed into one of the most loving, loyal, sensitive, and silly dogs to grace our rescue and home. He was hard to adopt - the scarring on his legs made people wonder if he was a former "fighting dog." He also has a "thing" for cats. So Lawrence stayed with us as we searched for his dream family. In February, his demeanor changed. He was lethargic and didn't seem to have that "Lawrence spunk." Blood tests revealed a somewhat low thyroid level, so we started him on thyroid meds, hoping for improvement. None came; in fact, things got much worse. One evening in late February, Lawrence began walking into things and falling off the bed. Our emergency vet confirmed our worst fears - he had gone totally blind due to neurological issues. On 2/28/16, an MRI showed a large tumor at the base of his brain that was compressing Lawrence's optic nerves, causing the sudden onset blindness. The tumor could not be biopsied or surgically removed because of its location. His neurologist estimated 3-4 months before the tumor caused total dementia. We wrestled with what to do. We researched holistic options that could provide some comfort, but he was declining so rapidly and showing signs of cranial discomfort, so we knew we had to make some difficult decisions. Lawrence's young age (estimated to be three years old) made him a good candidate for radiation, but the tumor would never be eradicated. We worried we may merely prolong his life but not quality of life, if we chose radiation. We wondered if we'd regret not doing everything possible. We didn't want to prolong suffering but we could not do nothing or the pressure in his brain would continue to escalate. After much research and deliberation, we realized Lawrence came from such a neglectful situation - his intake photo, with Lawrence covered in paint, was forever seared in our minds and hearts - that we knew we had to do more for him. So we brought him to the highly recommended Dr. Proulx at CA Vet Specialist's Angel Care Cancer Center in Carlsbad, CA. Staff fell in love with our black pocket pittie with scars running up and down his legs, his sweet but now vacant stare, and his innocence. Dr. Proulx devised a treatment plan specifically tailored for Lawrence's urgent situation, and we said let's give this boy everything he deserves. Lawrence will receive a CT scan prior to radiation, Mannitol injections, then four rounds of radiation over the course of six days, and then Lawrence will come home with us to live out the rest of his days hopefully in a much happier, comfortable condition. He may even regain some sight! Please help us cover the cost of Lawrence's vetting and treatment, not only for Lawrence but for the other forgotten companion animals lost in San Bernardino's bankruptcy shuffle. Our mission is to make these deserving, underrepresented souls a high priority in a struggling community.