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TN - 2016

Hardcore came to me on Valentine’s Day 2005 as a gift from my fiancé.  He was my very first love, and he became like a child to me.  He is sweet and snuggly and the most loveable dog anyone could ask for. 

Hardcore has been there through most of my adulthood, including getting married, having two kids, pushing through college, staying up late, he has always been the one to sit by my side through all of my struggles.   For that, he is such a symbol of strength and loyalty and love for me.   He is wonderful with my children, even in the middle of the night he will grab my attention if I am not attentive to one of their needs quick enough.  The book “Good Dog, Carl” could almost remind me of how much he cares for my children.   He is, undoubtedly part of this family, and still like a child to me. 

Hardcore is now 11 years old and began having some complications with chronic UTIs, bladder stones- which required surgery, and we chalked it up to just being old age.  So we started exercising more, changed his diet and he seemed to be doing better.  The day before Halloween this year, he just took a turn for the worst.   He was feverish, wouldn’t eat, and wouldn’t even drink.  I rushed him to the emergency vet here in town and they advised me he just had a kidney infection, gave him some subcutaneous fluids and sent us home with antibiotics. 

Days later, Hardcore was not making any progress and he was to the point where I was spoon feeding him water and trying to get him to eat anything I could, I was nursing him just to keep him alive.  He lost nearly 15 pounds, and I was so worried about him. 

Finally, we took him back to his regular doctor; he discovered a mass in his abdominal area and referred us to a specialist in Nashville, TN. We made the long trip to Nashville to go through a series of blood tests, ultrasounds, etc.  The internal medicine vet discovered that the mass in his abdomen was, in fact, his kidney that was enlarged, infected and now necrotic (dead). The only cure for Hardcore’s ailment would be to remove the kidney. So, I requested a quote and to speak to a surgeon.

They advised me the surgery would cost upwards of $2500.00.   Currently a single mother of two in nursing school, I had nearly already depleted my entire savings on all of Hardcore’s vet bills from his UTIs and surgeries before.  I just simply did not have all of the funds to come up with this. I advised the surgeon I would just have to take him home. I felt helpless. I got the idea to start a GoFundMe account on behalf of Hardcore’s name.  I also began contacting organizations around town to see if I could come up with money to save his life.

One of the organizations sent me a link to the Brown Dog Foundation. I read the website and filled out an application for a grant. They were diligent and consistent, and so timely that it took no time for them to secure the remaining funds that I needed to get Hardcore’s surgery to remove his kidney. Hardcore is doing so well, I can’t imagine what I would have done without the generous hands of this organization and the time and commitment they gave to me and my family. It’s truly heartwarming, and this Thanksgiving, we gave many, many thanks! 

To learn more about Kidney Hydronephrosis, please visit