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Lily's Wish: A Gift of Hope Medical Fund, honoring Lily's Spirit

Meet Lily, our brave, fearless angel

Lily's Story: Lily was pulled from a rural Arizona shelter over the July 4th weekend when the shelter would be closed for an extended weekend. Lily was emaciated and would not have lasted throughout the weekend.

When our volunteers transported her, they opened her mouth and saw a softened stick that had gotten wedged in the roof of her mouth, causing a raging infection. 

Over the course of a few weeks, we gave Lily antibiotics to reduce the infection, in order to see the damage it had caused. We had seen her bone was exposed on the roof of her mouth, and she would next be seeing a specialist. After her nose began bleeding, she made a trip to the emergency vet.

While being seen at the emergency vet at VCA Animal Hospital here in Tucson, the vet discovered an oral fistula, which is an opening from her sinus cavity into the roof of her mouth. She had been given 3 antibiotics and was given a consultation with Dr. Rocco, an oral specialist at VCA, to assess bone graphing options. 

Lily was only a 6 month old puppy, who had her entire life ahead of her.  She deserved a chance at a normal, long, happy, healthy life.

When Lily went in for her consultation with Dr. Rocco, the oral specialist at VCA, he informed us that Lily’s mouth was much, much worse than we could have imagined. After the infection cleared, her bone had been eaten away straight through the roof of her mouth. Dr. Rocco built a team from Pennsylvania and Australia to discuss the best course of action to tackle attempting to fix her mouth with a creative solution. He said at best, we were thinking it had a 50/50 shot of working, but we want to be sure that we did absolutely everything we could for Lily. 

We gave him the "go-ahead," even though we did not have the funds, and in the matter of 6 hours, our incredible donors and volunteers fundraised $3,800 to conduct her surgery that day! 

After Dr. Rocco was able to begin in her mouth, the bone itself deteriorated in his hands. It was all dead without any blood supply. However, as he was going to take impressions to make the prosthetic, he noticed some healthy bone that he was able to graph bone onto. He said the surgery went beautifully, and he was so thankful we decided to go through with it. 

That was Lily’s only chance of surviving.


That day, we only thought we were getting her x-rays and a game plan. Little did we know, it was literally life and death for Lily, our little fighter. 

Over the course of the next week and a half, Lily had to have a few stitches replaced, as expected, because it was a high use area of her mouth. She also had to wear a soft muzzle, aside from when she was eating or drinking. She went in for continual re-checks, and the last one was devastating. 

We received a phone call from Dr. Rocco from Lily’s last check up. Her mom and dad felt something was off and took her in. Their guts were right, and Lily spiked a fever, lost weight and her mouth was not healing. Lily was suffering. The roof of her mouth was not closing, and her body was fighting infection. 

If we had any other option, we would have done anything we could. However, the damage was irreversible, and letting Lily be pain-free was the absolute best thing we could do for her. 

Yes, we were gutted, as we know all of her followers and supporters were, too, however, Lily wouldn’t want you to feel anything but happiness, because through it all, that is what she had known - she had the most incredible spirit no matter what crappy hand of cards life dealt her. She would want you to think of her life, think of her playfulness, kindness, light-heartedness, and smile.

about Lily's wish medical fund 

Lily's Wish is a medical fund to honor Lily, and dogs just like her, who never stopped fighting no matter what odds life handed them. Lily's brave spirit is something we fell in love with, and we have always vowed to take in dog's just like her. 

We know there are plenty of dog lover's out there who have lost their best friend, and have asked us to donate in their honor. Our volunteers thought of a way to do so, by honoring your best friend through "Lily's Wish." These funds will support dogs just like Lily, needing medical attention during their fighting chance, and we are here to give that to them.

Lily 4.jpg


donate here! 

Donate today to honor your furry friend and our lily. 


Click here to donate via paypal! 

Our current medical dogs in need of help

This is Herbie. 

Herbie’s story is one we have to tell for you to believe it. One word - serendipity.

We had gone on an intake freeze last month in order to catch up on medical and training needs for our current dogs in our care. One of these dogs, Argos, was set to go in for his neuter. As he is waiting with our volunteer, Miranda, she noticed a little dog in the arms of the lady across from her. As she complimented how adorable he was and asked what his name was, she discovered he didn’t have a name and was getting some medical needs met because he was found as a stray and she was hoping to get him a forever home. She had no social media and was so thankful she ran into a rescue, because all rescues weren’t responding.

Miranda rang our Director, and she then chatted with the finder soon after. Herbie, as we would come to name him, was found as a stray in a Dallas park, which is common in the area. He ran up to her - a bag of bones - with a mouth so full of infection, he couldn’t eat. She caught him, and raced him home, attempting to clean out his mouth and then took him to our vet, which happens to be the only non-emergency on a Saturday. They gave him antibiotics and was set to see him back for neuter. 

The day Miranda met him in the office was the day he came in for neuter. We made a plan to have the finder keep Herbie for two days and then off he would go to Tucson for one of our medical fosters. 

This is where the story takes an insane turn.  

Miranda is on her way to get Argos for neuter when she gets a call from the finder that she is on her way to the emergency room with her toddler son who is having a seizure and wanted to know if we could pick Herbie up. Of course. No questions asked. 

We worked Herbie out for boarding for two days until his trip.  When he was picked up, he had no teeth! Herbie had to have a complete extraction because of how infected his mouth was. They could not do the neuter because he was too frail to leave under sedation longer, and needed to get the rotted teeth out. All of this for a dog that’s only approx. 2 years old.

Onto Tucson he went. Now, he’s recovering, eating and trying to get strong enough for his neuter. We are trying to fundraise for bloodwork and any other medical that may pop up with this little guy. 

Talk about being in the right place at the right time!

Help Little Herbie Heal! 


lily's wish hall of honor



Our first donor for Lily’s Wish is from Judy, who donated in memoriam to dear Reggie. 

Reggie was a 16 year old boy whose owner tragically passed away, and was taken in by a dear friend, Lynn. Reggie lived a beautiful year with Lynn, and passed away from a stroke. Reggie was the sweetest boy, who felt like a puppy until he crossed the Rainbow Bridge. 

Lynn’s friend Judy donated $100 in Reggie’s name, and the contribution went toward Lily’s Wish, assisting with medical costs for HOD dogs. 

Thank you, Judy! 


Izzy, a beautiful rescued girl, who had a dad with a heart of gold, passed away from kidney failure unexpectedly. 

Her dad, Edward, decided to pay her life forward by donating the majority of Spot's rectal prolapse surgery, saving his life. Now that little puppy can have a long, happy life thanks to Edward and Izzy looking down on him! 

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