Luke has been a part of my life for many years. I’ve watched him grow from a tiny, all chocolate-colored puppy to the graying, loyal dog that he is. He has quirks such as enjoying sniffing people’s hair, wagging his whole body when he gets excited, and knowing the words “belly rub” better than “sit” or “lie down”. Luke is the type that if you leave one room, he will follow you to another. He prances when he walks and at times, he seems to leap like a deer when he runs. Luke’s snuggles and companionship have brought me so much warmth and joy over the years. He loves lying on top of people nestling his head under their chin, and I know that he loves me just as much, if not more, than I love him.
Luke moved with me from Mississippi to Texas when I started working on my graduate degree. I was overjoyed to move into my own place and officially call myself a “dog mom”. In November, I took Luke to his annual visit, and learned that his lymph nodes were abnormally swollen. I made the decision to run a test to see if this was due to an infection or cancer. A week or so later, I received the news that Luke had lymphoma. It was the day after Thanksgiving, and I was devastated. Overall, Luke seemed relatively normal aside from some fatigue and low appetite. However, as I felt the lymph nodes grow, I knew that I needed to do something. Luke has been happier in Texas than I’ve seen him in a while, and I did not want him to be deprived of that happiness. I was referred to the Animal Diagnostic Clinic and Luke was given a few treatment options.
As a first-year graduate student, I live off of a small nine-month stipend. Luckily, having worked before attending school, I had some savings, but feared depleting these funds. I began doing research on ways to get assistance for Luke. I joined a canine lymphoma Facebook group which suggested reaching out to non-profits. I contacted the Animal Diagnostic Clinic who said that they have worked with Dogslife before. I figured that applying would be worth a try and went for it. Being approved has been a huge relief and has lifted a huge burden off of me. I am so thankful for Dogslife for helping Luke and me in our time of need. This grant will help me spend more quality time with my Luke and continue to give him all the cuddles and love that he deserves.
- Sidonia Compton (January 2021)