A pet owner has launched a desperate campaign to save her little dog who needs urgent cancer treatment costing thousands.Claire Blake, of Bristol, was left devastated when she heard the news that her eight-year-old Lhasa Apso, Barney, has an aggressive brain tumour close to his right eye. She was told on June 5 that Barney would have little over two months left to live unless he undergoes life-saving surgery and radiotherapy. But Claire was dealt another blow when she realised there wasn’t enough money left on her pet insurance policy to cover radiotherapy at £10,000, followed by brain surgery at £6,000.
Thousands had already been spent on CT scans, blood tests, biopsies and ultrasounds – some of which cost more than £2,000 each – to find out what was causing her dog to suffer severe weight loss.
But this meant there was practically no money left on the plan to treat little Barney once he was diagnosed with cancer.
Now the owner, who has had ‘loving and affectionate’ Barney since he was eight weeks old, is desperately trying to raise the funds by setting up a Go Fund Me page.
Claire told Metro.co.uk: ‘We are absolutely desperate to make him better.
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‘Without this treatment he will die – potentially within just a few short weeks.
‘But if he has surgery and radiotherapy he should be able to live a normal life expectancy, which is fantastic news.
‘Because he’s a young dog and he’s healthy in all other ways, he’s a good candidate for the treatment.’Lhasa Apsos usually live until around the age of 16, meaning Barney should ordinarily have over half his life left to live.
If Claire raises the funds needed, Barney will receive treatment at the Southfields Veterinary Hospital in Essex, which is the UK’s leading centre for the treatment of cancer in dogs. Barney’s oncologist told Claire earlier this week that in order for the little dog to survive, he must start radiotherapy immediately due to the great depth and size of the tumour.
As it is so large and close to his eye, the tumour would not be responsive to standard chemotherapy protocols, added the owner.Claire, who works for the Department of Food and Environmental Affairs, said despite having a ‘very respectable job’, with her salary and savings it is impossible to come up with tens of thousands of pounds within weeks.
INTERESTING FACT ABOUT YOUR PET: The Saluki is the world’s oldest dog breed. They appear in ancient Egyptian tombs dating back to 2100 B.C.
‘I don’t like to have to ask for the money but £16,000 is an awful lot to have to find, especially with no warning,’ she added.
Claire, who owns two other dogs of the same breed, said all her pets ‘are incredibly precious’ to her and organised ‘joint custody’ of Barney with her sister because her niece and nephew are so attached to him.
‘Barney’s a little character – he’s very loving and affectionate,’ she added.
‘He is adored by all, particularly my seven-year-old niece and five-year-old nephew, have never known – and could not imagine – life without him.’
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