Recently there has been a bit of a kerfuffle on Little Bear's auction page. A lot of mud-slinging and name calling has been going on, with some users insinuating that perhaps his owner is running a scam to raise money without having any intention of actually funding a surgery.
I know a lot has been said about this already on the Facebook page, but after reading some of the rather hateful comments and accusations going back and forth I had to offer my two cents.
Little Bear is not my cat. He belongs to a young lady named Allie, who adopted him from the New Hampshire Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. I stumbled on his Facebook page by chance and offered to help her network his cause through blogging and YouTube, since these are the skills I have to offer. Allie did not ask for my help nor has she ever asked me for money for Little Bear.
Everything has been going fairly smoothly until recently when the verbal warfare began in earnest. To everyone who is clamoring for vet records, I have two things to say: first, that you have every right to ask for transparency before donating, and second, that she has posted the proof you requested. Here it is below:
Here is a copy of Little Bear's x-rays:
I hope these will give people peace of mind and quiet down the
negativity. Goodness knows there is enough of it already in the world.
I think the important fact that many are overlooking is that the
surgery is not scheduled for the immediate moment because Little Bear
needs six months to fully grow. I could have told anyone that from the
start: one does not perform this sort of surgery on a baby animal, any
more than a baby human. Obviously Tufts will not schedule a surgery for
an underdeveloped kitten without full $$$ to cover the bill, that would
be standard practice at any vet (much less an exclusive vet school).
It will take some time to raise the full $5,000 for his first surgery
in the spring and another $5,000 for his second (hopeful) surgery in the
fall. Money cannot be raised overnight and thus it is important to
begin raising funds ahead of time. I think that all one can do when
considering donating money, whether to an individual or a charity, is
poke about for the facts and take the rest on faith. Goodness knows even
with a well-established charity one is assuming on faith that the funds
will be properly used.
One user on Facebook posted this information, which he allegedly obtained from Allie's regular vet, Sagamore Medical Hospital.
We are in fact the veterinary office that saw Little Bear initially on 9/25/12. On that exam it was noted that both front limbs were deformed and xrays were recommended. On evaluation by the radiologist the following was noted :
Findings: The radius has failed to develop on both sides. The left antebrachium carpal joint is dorsally luxated. The right is dorsally subluxated. Both carpi are flexed. Lateral/medial malalignment is difficult to discern from the available views. The humeral ulnar articulations appear relatively normal.
Conclusion Bilateral radial hemimelia. Secondary bilateral congenital carpal luxation/subluxation and flexural limb deformity."
The owner has since taken this cat to Tufts University for a consultation and the most recent report from them states the final diagnosis is Bilateral radial agenesis with ulnocarpal varus, and the best option for Little Bear at this point is to allow him to grow a bit more until his bones have reached full length. At that point, Tufts would re-examine and discuss surgery on his left forelimb. They recommend xrays of his heart at that time as well. In the meantime they recommend at home physical therapy twice daily for range of motion.
Sagamore Animal Hospital