27 November, 2017
Louise and Randy Squires have always had dogs in their life. Often times their dogs come to them from their own children, going from grandparent to parent when the situation required it. This was the case with Kobe who initially belonged to their daughter Jackie who had him from a puppy. Over the years Louise would often take care of Kobe and became very close to him as well as his poodle brother Chip. Both Kobe and Chip eventually made the full time transition to Louise and Randy's care where they could have a life filled with 24/7 attention, boat rides and daily walks.
Both Kobe and Chip lived a life of luxury for many years, but then one day just over 3 years ago life suddenly changed. When Kobe was 9 years of age he injured one of his legs and was undergoing some diagnostics to determine the degree of his injury when a tumor on his spleen was discovered. Further testing revealed that Kobe had lymphoma and was given one month to live, possibly two if he underwent chemotherapy. He would also need to have the tumor and his spleen removed. Kobe's family were devastated.
Lymphoma is a type of cancer that sneaks up on you. Everything can seem totally fine one minute and then the next minute your dog is fighting for their life. Kobe was no exception. His leg injury was completely unrelated to the cancer, but it was this injury that allowed his vet to find something far more serious that would otherwise have gone undetected. After seeing a specialist Kobe had the surgery to have the tumor and his spleen removed, but his family decided to not put him through chemotherapy given that the doctors only felt it would give him an extra month or two. They wanted whatever time they had left with Kobe to be as happy and comfortable as possible.
Given only a month to live Kobe's family watched over him like a hawk, loving him and preparing for the worst. And then a miracle happened. Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months and then months into years. Three years later and Kobe is still here and doing so well. He continues to love his walks, his boat rides and even his swimming. The only thing slowing Kobe, who is now 12 years of age, down are problems with his rear legs limiting the amount of walking he can participate in.
Knowing that Kobe still has a strong desire to enjoy life Louise looked for ways to help him overcome his mobility challenges. She never knew there were strollers for dogs, but heard about them through the grape vine and was directed to Dog Quality's Dogger stroller. It was love at first ride. Kobe lives for his walks and while his mind is willing, his body is no longer able, but with the Dogger he can still join his family (2-legged and 4-legged) on their outdoor adventures.
The Dogger also helped him to recover from a recent leg injury that required him to be on limited activity. With the Dogger he was able to have the rest he needed, but at the same time never missing out on the fun and Kobe couldn't be happier.
"The Dogger has become a savior for us helping Kobe heal and enjoy his walks."
As pet parents we are confronted with the heartbreaking knowledge that our dogs' lives are unfairly short compared to our own, but facing something as scary as cancer makes what time we have with them even more special. Louise, Randy, Chip and Kobe know that every day they have together as a family is truly a gift and they cherish every moment of every day, thankful to still be together. Kobe is never alone, always loved and every day brings a new adventure thanks to his loving family and his Dogger.
Kobe has taught his family to never give up hope. There is always a chance, no matter what the challenges, no matter what the doctors say that miracles can happen. Kobe is living proof that we need to keep ourselves open to the possibility of being surprised, of defying the odds and that by living each day to its fullest we can find true happiness in the here and now.