Dog News

Suffering Dog Desperately Needs Surgery

by Melanie

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Jaime Peterson, a fan of Life With Dogs, came to us for help with her Cocker Spaniel.  Her sweet, loveable girl Jena Pumpkin has been suffering from terrible ear infections, leaving her uncomfortable and in pain.  But with a little help from you, she could be back to her playful self soon.

Jena is incredibly uncomfortable.  She must go through repeated cleaning and medication procedures, but they’re not helping anymore.  The damage to her ears is likely irreversible, and surgery is the only option for her to have a chance at a normal, quality life.  The procedure may cause her permanent hearing loss, but this is not guaranteed.  What is guaranteed is no more discomfort, constant itchiness or pain.  Friends and family members say Jena’s personality has changed because of her ear issues, but with this surgery, she will be able to play like a puppy again.

From Jaime:

I am an active volunteer for Friends of Noah -WI which is an all-breed animal rescue. I have come to some of you many times, asking for your support for a really great non-profit animal rescue. This time, I come to you for your support for one of my own furkids, Jena Pumpkin (a.k.a Jena Puuuunnkin).
My Jena is a Cocker Spaniel… of those breeds that is known to have ear problems or chronic ear infections. And yes, unlike her sister Cadie Mae, Jena has always had problems her whole life with ear infections. Those cute, long floppy ears aren’t always cute in Jena’s mind.  About 2 1/2 months ago, Jena and I took a trip to see the vet once again for ear infections. Dr. Steve sedated her slightly, cultured her ears (the culture indicated 3 different organisms in those cute ears), and thoroughly cleaned her ears.  Dr. Steve prescribed 2 oral medications and an ear drop. After a month of medication and cleaning every day, her ears had not improved. Dr. Steve then prescribed her another prescription and thoroughly cleaned ear ears again. Again, her ears really are not improving. Due to scar tissue and calcification in her ear canals, it is almost impossible to get medication to where it needs to be to treat the infection. So, at this point our daily routine is not making the problem go away…..but keeping it from getting worse.

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My Jena has really shown her age in the last 6 months. Yes, she is getting older and is not the pup she used to be….. but now she just doesn’t feel well, her ears itch and has tickles in her ears causing her to scratch or shake her ears, her allergies seem to bother her more, and she now has difficulty hearing! I have already changed her food to a high quality grain-free, gluten-free food, have her on a daily multi-vitamin, and also a probiotic (a big change in monthly furkid costs).
So, what do I do from here? Dr. Steve is recommending that Jena have ear ablation surgery. He wouldn’t probably recommend this surgery if we weren’t to the point we are at today. For her quality of life, Dr. Steve says that this surgery really should be considered. I have done quite a bit of research on both lateral ear resection and ear ablation, and I agree, Jena really should have this procedure done. Unfortunately, this is a surgery that Dr. Steve is unable to perform and I have been checking with other surgeons/hospitals for estimates. I have received multiple estimates back already and so far the ranges are $3000-$4500 (lower range for one ear and higher range for both ears). Jena would need surgery in both ears. Short version of the procedure description…… basically, they go in and remove her ear canals. There would be more air flow into her ear and less likelihood for bacterial buildup in an L-shaped ear canal. Her ears would be stitched up where the normal ear opening is and her ear opening would then be open in a lower spot. I know, sounds strange but if you google it….. it is an interesting procedure (yeah, listen to the future vet tech in me coming out, lol). I did not have pet insurance before…. but as of a couple days ago…. I took out policies on my furkids. Unfortunately, I am unsure what the insurance would cover, if anything, with it being pre-existing conditions. I am waiting for the official documents to come in the mail so I can determine if the insurance will cover anything. At least now, I am prepared for the future if any other unplanned health things come up.
So, I am asking you this time to find it your hearts to help one of my own. It would mean so much to me and my precious baby Jena to be able to fund this surgery for her. In the event that we are overwhelmed by your caring hearts and funds exceed what may be needed, all remaining funds will go to Friends of Noah – WI All Breed Animal Rescue for their Noah’s Fund.

Jena thanks you for your support and making this possible!!


This information can be verified through Jena Pumpkin’s primary veterinarian.

Badger Veterinary Hospital

Dr. Steven Servantez, DVM

3113 E. McCormick Dr.

Janesville, WI 53547

(608) 754-1888


I have chosen the board-certified surgeon to perform Jena’s procedure!!!

Dr. David Edinger, DVM, DACVS

Edinger Surgical Options

1848 Waldorf Blvd

Madison, WI  53716



If you would like to donate and help Jena feel good again, please visit one of Jaime’s fundraiser pages.  Thank you!



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