View Full Version : News about Lucy...

Linda Stern
3rd August 2006, 05:19 PM
Just wanted you all to know that the news about Lucy was not good. She is not able to have an operation. Multipule shunts around a very small liver...sooooo....we are very very sad. I am caught because I don't know what to do...the breeder has said she doesn't want her back but will take her...and she will give me another puppy or refund me but I am not able to think that far ahead while i still don't know what to do about Lucy. The docs at Davis said she could make til 1 year old...
Do I keep her???? or send her back????
If anyone wants to give me an opinion...
I really have liked being a part of this site...my poor 5 year old Calli, she now has accepted Lucy as part of our family as you all said she would...what will she think...??? I don't she is even ready for this she just got used to Lucy...
Very bad luck,
Linda Stern

3rd August 2006, 05:32 PM
1st of all--- I am so sorry for Lucy and your family.
2nd-- no one can answer the question of keep her or give her up for you. Having a dog with a drastic health issue is difficult to say the least. The breeder probably had no clue - liver shunts aren't very common in cavaliers (tho they seem to be more common in the toy breeds overall).
I am not sure what I would do if I were in your position. I'd be afraid the breeder would just put Lucy down-- What is Lucy's quality of life now? would be a big question.
Again, I wish there was something to help-- Sandy

3rd August 2006, 05:38 PM
Linda so sorry about your situation. Please read my discussion about our Marley.


She came from a broker in the US and was originally shipped over from Ireland. She had a grade two heart murmor and a loose knee when we got her. Luckily her murmur has been upgraded and her knee is tightening up as well. I can only hope your puppy's health will improve also. We were given the same choice of giving her back for a new puppy or keeping her and we just had to keep her because we became so attached to her. The decision is totally up to you and I'm sure everyone would understand and accept either decision you make. I know it's hard. We went through a very similar situation. Best of luck and I truly hope your puppy gets better! :paw:

3rd August 2006, 05:46 PM
Well, I know what I would do, but I tend to think with my heart.

I wouldn't be able to send her back - I'd have to keep her.

matties mum
3rd August 2006, 08:39 PM
I am sorry about Lucy, but myseif I could not send her back.My first cavalier Mattie had a bad heart murmor and I was told if I took him back he would pts so we kept him I know this dose not heip in your decision Aileen :(

3rd August 2006, 08:47 PM
Oh that is awful news. We will keep Lucy in our prayers. Personally I would want to keep the puppy unless it became a financial burden that I could not handle. I believe her life would be more pleasant with you unless the breeder could give her lots of attention.

This is a hard one. We will be thinking of you.

3rd August 2006, 08:49 PM
I agree with Sandy. This is one of those hard choices a pet owner has to make, unfortunately. For me, it would probably depend on the quality of life the little one has.

My only information comes from a situation described in Suzanne Clothier's book, _Bones would rain from the sky : deepening our relationships with dogs_. There's a story in this book about a little pup with a heart defect. The breeder opted to keep the puppy, knowing he probably wouldnt live much past 1, if that. The dog was happy and otherwise normal, so the breeder chose to let nature take its course. The author describes how the months she shared with this pup (he died at 9months, I think) impacted her life.

If you choose to keep the dog, you might want to check out this book.

3rd August 2006, 08:59 PM
Yes, it is probably one of the hardest choices but I don't think I could give up my puppy unless of course I thought that the breeder was going to give him/her the best possible quality of life and medical care.

Please don't think I am trying to pressure you at all, that is the last thing I would want to do. My heart goes out to you and poor little Lucy.

Hugs to you both xxx

4th August 2006, 12:01 AM
IMHO the breeder is putting you in a difficult situation. I am sure she will pts given your previous history with her, and she has made clear she doesn't want this pup.

I would try to negotiate some in-between solution with the breeder.

If the pup has some time yet, I would probably see if you can agree with the breeder for you to give her what would amount to short term care before it is time to let her go (how could you ship back an ill puppy anyway?), and see if she will 1)replace the pup (though given the sounds of this breeder, I think I would want to seek someone who breeds for health and is closer to you); 2) see if she will let you do as above and refund some of your money, say half, if needed, with a report from the doctors at Davis stating clearly that the pup will not live more than a year and that it would be inappropriate to ship an ill dog, which I am guessing would be their perspective as well.

In any circumstances, it would likely be better for you to pts now or later, than require the pup to endure a long and stressful journey back. But read on:

Hospice style care can be difficult but also very rewarding. I think if I were in your situation, I would keep the pup knowing it has no life if it returns to this person. And I would try to get some of the money refunded. I would point out that you are undertaking a costly favour for her, as the only alternative would be to pts now in California. At least you will give this little cavalier some time.

I would chalk this up to (bad) experience -- you couldn't have predicted this illness, but you also are not working with a decent breeder, by all accounts. You have really encountered one of the worst situations you could and ended up without the support that a good breeder would have given. I truly cannot imagine any decent breeder demanding a puppy in this condition be shipped halfway across the country. If I were the breeder, I'd be totally supportive of someone caring for this puppy and would willingly offer another puppy at no cost from another litter.

If you decide not to return her but feel you cannot manage her, I'd suggest contacting the nearest breed club rescue, as they will very likely have someone who would take this little girl for the remainder of her time.

This is the Northern California CKCSC contact:

Kathy Tegg - cavalier5@comcast.net
(northern california)

and this is the ACKCSC contact:

Bay Area CKCS Club
Toll free message line (866)750-2090 rescue@BACKCSC.com

I might call them anyway just for advice on what to do next, explaining your situation.

4th August 2006, 01:26 AM
Linda, i'm so sorry you have found yourself in this painful position. For me, it would be a matter of whether i could handle the financial cost of the medical care and whether with my schedule of living alone and not being home all day, the dog could receive adequate care. Once bonded with a dog, which for most of us probably happens instantly, sending the dog back will leave a lifelong wound of grief. i know because i had to give a puppy back once, and i cry when i think of it now. Years ago, when my daughter was 11, I took a free puppy impulsively at christmas time, and then found that the puppy could not be alone all day while i was at work and my daughter at school, duh. She barked constantly, in loneliness, and i live in an apartment.

but as painful as this was, your situation is far worse, because of the illness, the expense and the time you have spent together. If i could handle it practically, arrange to be home as much as needed, and if the medical expenses were not so bad because it would just be custodial and palliative care, i would keep the dog, knowing that as painful as it would be, it would be a very rich and rewardign experience as well, not something i would ask for or seek out, but something that would be very valuable.

Because you went to Davis, i'm guessing you're in CA. If so, CA has puppy lemon laws that would cover this situation, and if i'm remembering correctly, the law gives the puppy buyer the choice of three options, one of which is keeping the dog and receiving a refund of the cost of the puppy, or the cost of the vet bills, up to a certain limit (around $1000). I have this info bookmarked and will post it later tonight, i have to go to work right now, running late, and i have sooooooo many cavalier related bookmarks to look through.

I think i was put on the trail of these laws from a link somewhere on this site. my pup was sick the day i brought him home, and the first four vets he saw couldn't diagnose it and i was hemmorhaging money, $1000 in a month, not good but which i could live with, but there was no sign that it would ever stop, and they were groping in the dark and proposing invasive very expensive procedures, so i relate to your situation a little because i was having conversations with friends about whether i could keep him, and whether the lady i bought him from would put him down if i returned him, and laying awake at night thinking about how deeply in debt i was going to go, as i looked ahead to retirement in a few years, and feeling i could not let the little guy go, he was MY DOG, MY BOY. It was a nightmare that someone had actually warned me about while i was looking for a dog, as being the consequence of buying from other than a reputable breeder, so her words kept echoing in my ears, how she talked of the tragedy of people in love with terribly ill puppies, and all the bad emotions involved. Fortunately, my dog's problem eventually was found to be a very simple one, and i am so sorry it has not turned out that way for you.

whatever you do, you have my support and understanding.

Cathy Moon
4th August 2006, 02:06 AM
Linda, my heart goes out to you. Both Karlin and Judy have given better advice than I ever could. I hope you can feel the caring and support of this group as you take this journey.

Cathy T
4th August 2006, 02:23 AM
Linda - so sorry you are going through this. Karlin...well put as usual!

4th August 2006, 06:06 AM
Here is an excerpt from the California Health and Safety Code regarding return of a sick puppy, full refund, reimbursement for reasonable veterinary expenses, the option of retaining possession of the puppy with reimbursement for veterinary expenses up to 150% of the purchase price, or replacement with another puppy of the buyer's choosing plus reimbursement for veterinary costs, and the conditions that are supposed to be met in order for the law to apply.

Section 122160.
(a) If a licensed veterinarian states in writing that within 15 days after the purchaser has taken physical possession of the dog after the sale by a pet dealer, the dog has become ill due to any illness that existed in the dog on or before delivery of the dog to the purchaser, or, if within one year after the purchaser has taken physical possession of the dog after the sale, a veterinarian licensed in this state states in writing that the dog has a congenital or hereditary condition that adversely affects the health of the dog, or that requires, or is likely in the future to require, hospitalization or nonelective surgical procedures, the dog shall be considered unfit for sale, and the pet dealer shall provide the purchaser with any of the following remedies that the purchaser elects:
(1) Return the dog to the pet dealer for a refund of the purchase price, plus sales tax, and reimbursement for reasonable veterinary fees for diagnosis and treating the dog in an amount not to exceed the original purchase price of the dog, plus sales tax.
(2) Exchange the dog for a dog of the purchaser's choice of equivalent value, providing a replacement dog is available, and reimbursement for reasonable veterinary fees for diagnosis and treating the dog in an amount not to exceed the original purchase price of the dog, plus sales tax.
(3) Retain the dog, and reimbursement for reasonable veterinary fees for diagnosis and treating the dog in an amount not to exceed 150 percent of the original purchase price of the dog, plus sales tax on the original purchase price of the dog.
(b) If the dog has died, regardless of the date of the death of the dog, obtain a refund for the purchase price of the dog, plus sales tax, or a replacement dog of equivalent value of the purchaser' s choice and reimbursement for reasonable veterinary fees in diagnosis and treatment of the dog in an amount not to exceed the original purchase price of the dog, plus sales tax, if either of the following conditions exist:
(1) A veterinarian, licensed in this state, states in writing that the dog has died due to an illness or disease that existed within 15 days after the purchaser obtained physical possession of the dog after the sale by a pet dealer.
(2) A veterinarian, licensed in this state, states in writing that the dog has died due to a congenital or hereditary condition that was diagnosed by the veterinarian within one year after the purchaser obtained physical possession of the dog after the sale by a pet dealer. 122165. (a) There shall be a rebuttable presumption that an illness existed at the time of sale if the animal dies within 15 days of delivery to the purchaser.
(b) For purposes of Section 122160, a finding by a veterinarian of intestinal or external parasites shall not be grounds for declaring a dog unfit for sale unless their presence makes the dog clinically ill or is likely to make the dog clinically ill.
(c) For purposes of Section 122160, the value of veterinary services shall be deemed reasonable if the services rendered are appropriate for the diagnosis and treatment of illness or congenital or hereditary condition, made by the veterinarian and the value of similar services is comparable to the value of similar services rendered by other licensed veterinarians in proximity to the treating veterinarian.

4th August 2006, 06:58 AM
Snuggles and I will keep Lucy and you in our prayers. Please, whaterever you decide, do it with the knowledge that you have done the best, and made the best decision that you could in an unbearable situation. Also know that whatever you decide, Lucy will know and understand that whatever your decision, you based it on what you thought would be best for her, and the love you have for her.
I could not make those decisions. I'm not that strong. God bless you both.

4th August 2006, 07:08 AM
If I found myself where you are standing now....

I would keep the puppy and give her a quality of life that she so deserves until the quality turned around and wasn't good anymore. Then I would do the responsible thing that any caring pet owner would do and PTS.

Then at least I would have peace of mind what happened to her and that you stood in her corner and you cared and fought for her which I doubt her breeder would do. ...OR and please don't all scream at me.......

If the financial side is not bearable for you to keep her then I would PTS. I couldn't watch her suffer without the expensive treatment and I just couldn't stand the thought of the questions in my head forever asking "what became of her" if I returned her in this condition.

In this case I would have a vet write a statement of health now and then seek to recover all my costs from the breeder. it sounds like you have a poorly little one there, I'm sure he would do this for you.

just a thought....are there any charities for animals that could help you with costs? any Cavalier clubs etc? I know we have them in the U.K try asking around or get in touch with your nearest rescue centres, they may have numbers etc..

Alison, Wilts, U.K.

4th August 2006, 08:04 AM
Linda, i love your avatar picture.

i just read your other posts which i hadn't read before, and see that the breeder is in Iowa. Iowa isn't listed as having a puppy lemon law on the lists i found, but i don't know how up to date those lists are. Here is a site advertising lemon law lawyers for Iowa: http://www.toomanybills.com/lemon-law/iowa-lemon-law.html which has the following quote:

It doesn't matter whether you have a car lemon, a lemon puppy, a BMW lemon auto or any other type of lemon, they can still push you to the edge of sanity.

Let a lemon law specialist have the headaches, you just want the horrible taste that a lemon auto leaves to go away. Under the Iowa lemon law there will be no cost to you as the manufacturers will have to pay the legal bills as well.

From this, it sounds as if there are legal precedents in Iowa dealing with puppies. You can probably get a free consultation with an attorney and see whether you have a good case based on the documentation you have and the facts of the case, as well as the jurisdictional questions.

After reading your other posts, my sentimental favorite choice is for you either to keep Lucy and have the breeder reimburse her medical costs IN FULL, or keep Lucy and sue the breeder under the Iowa lemon law, or give Lucy to a cavalier rescue organization and sue the breeder.

It sounds like she is conforming to the laws and ethical standards of the business IN PART by offering to take the puppy back and give a refund or a new puppy. But she is not agreeing with the third option found in the CA puppy lemon law, which is for her to pay the vet bills while you keep the puppy, up to 150% of the purchase price. Also, according to that law, even if she gives you a new puppy in exchange, or gives you a refund, she is also supposed to reimburse your vet bills too.

If you end up suing, it will strengthen your case if you make friendly cordial documented contacts with her in which you tell her whatever it is you've decided that you want to do, and ask for everything you are entitled to under the law, while acknowledging how difficult this is for everyone. This is a good faith effort to work things out which, if she refuses, will just add support to your legal case. If you initiate a lawsuit, she may get legal advice that she should settle because she could end up having to pay all the legal costs too.

I don't know what you are facing as far as lucy's condition, symptoms, needs for care, and expenses go--from what you said, it sounds like a severe case. Liver failure is often not a painful death because coma can come well before death. But i dont know about Lucy's case. The quality of life can vary widely with liver disease.

4th August 2006, 08:11 AM
what alison said.