Backing Boom in 2019

It’s almost a year since we first met Boom.

He is the feature of my first blog post because he represents everything that I exist for, and yet he is a constant source of challenge to me!

A 13 year old Westie (West Highland White), Boom has been in the loving care of his human, “Bee” since he was a pup. These days life is a real struggle for Bee. With mental health decline and chronic health issues, Bee is regularly hospitalised, a situation that creates huge anxiety around Boom and what will happen to him. Bee’s life is dark compared to that which most of us enjoy and take for granted.

Boom receives care from Cherished Pets to managing his chronic illnesses every week, giving peace of mind to his owner.

We were contacted by a local health agency last January to create a plan to support the care of Boom during Bee’s hospital stays, and in the worst case scenario, her death, which could happen at anytime.

Following our initial assessment it was clear that Bee and Boom are eligible for full level care as a beneficiary of our charity, Cherished Pets Foundation. This means that we can access support for Boom’s health management across all our areas of service: Wellness, Respite care, Case Management, Veterinary Care, Volunteer assistance, 24/7 support and triage and emergency response plans.

The value of our care provided to Boom in the past 12 months would easily exceed $3000 at market rates. I haven’t seen the final sums. If one takes in to account the time spent on the phone to Bee during all hours when she is concerned, and our “drop in” visits to check on them, it would be much more. Not to mention our worry time about them both.

Boom has multiple health issues, chronic nasty allergic skin disease, recurrent bouts of suspected low grade pancreatitis, liver disease and senior dog issues. He has a heart murmur and was never neutered. He has been fed low grade food for most of his life, and lives in a less than ideal environment, but he is loved. So loved.

Bee experiences high level anxiety at the thought of leaving him, losing him, keeping him, loving him. Everything really. In fact it had been 3-5 years since Boom had been to a vet, due to Bee’s fears of a) not being able to afford treatment b) being told he was going to die and c) physically being able to get him to the vet. Instead she had been self-managing his skin condition and sadly watching his condition deteriorate.

We are there to provide 24/7 support, triage visits, home nurse visits, weekly grooming and baths to manage his nasty skin, veterinary care, medications, pathology tests, nutrition and wellness needs, respite care, emotional support and preparation for end of life.

I lie in bed at night wondering how we can continue to support Boom and others like him. You see, we have close to 40 pets and their people currently listed as beneficiaries of our Foundation’s social and community pet care service. Demand is growing. We are getting tired. We are stretched.

In 2018 we have had wonderful organisational support from PETStock Assist, Demeter Legacy ,Grace Gives, KINGS Funerals, Ocean Grove Connected Communities, Smallest of Wishes, and our community partner Wallingtons WRG, not to mention the many private donors who support Cherished Pets Foundation, our business supporters and friends, The Dove, Barwon Heads Uniting Church, and the wonderful volunteers who support our fundraising efforts. Last year we had generous anonymous donors cover the expenses of three individual cases at a cost of more than $5000 combined. Heartfelt thanks.

This blog marks the beginning of a new phase of Cherished Pets journey, where I am determined and committed to taking our unique bond-centred veterinary service and expanding its accessibility to others.

I need YOU. You can help by:

1. Donate.
2. Follow my blog, like, share, spread the word on social media too.
3. Volunteer with our Foundation.
4. Use our general vet services as profits from this provides untied funding to support our social service.
5. Bequest and support our future. Contact us for more information.
5. Invest in our adventure and make a truly meaningful contribution to our future. Contact me directly


Published by Social Hearted Vet

Community hearted veterinarian. Social Entrepreneur. Thought leader. Advancing Veterinary Social Work Advocate for the Human Animal Bond and One Welfare. Mother. Friend. Cares for our planet.