Willow at 5 weeksHi! My name is Willow. I just turned 5-months old. I don’t know a lot of big words yet, but I so much want to tell you about how thrilling my life so far!

I’m really liking this friendly, playful world! I share a home with a very nice lady and my two furry foster siblings, Honey Bee and Peluche. They are golden retrievers, too. Honey Bee is 3 years old. Together we scramble and play and run in the yard. Peluche is probably what I’ll be like in ten years, a refined older golden who doesn’t enjoy frisking about with pups. Still, I like having him as my big brother.

Foster mom says I’m a “typical puppy”. I don’t know exactly what that means, but when I heard her add, “I’m loving this little girl,” that sounded like a good thing!

Some of my favorite hobbies are romping with Honey Bee, chasing and tumbling with the puppy next door, and digging in the dirt: I’ve already dug down eight inches! I wonder if that’s a record for a 5-month-old puppy? We have a little pool in the backyard. After digging, I hop in and out of the water. Foster mom dries my coat with a big, fluffy towel and then whoosh … I get a quick blow dry by running through the back yard!

When I go to the doctor, he says I’m growing! I weigh around 35 pounds now! Foster mom says I have to grow into my paws. My body is busy growing, but it has some troubles that need to be repaired. The vet said it appears that I have a right ectopic ureter with likely need for a nephrectomy. Those are big words. The vet said it means my ureter is outside of where it is supposed to be and has likely affected my kidney, too. They will also likely have to do, another big word, a colposuspension. He says this means that my bladder will likely need to be slid into its proper place.

Willow knows how to sitI don’t have pain because of the inside problems, but the problems do cause me to dribble frequently. My nice mom cleans me up many times each day. I think she appreciates that we spend a lot of time outdoors running, taking walks, and sniffing; sniffing is a great sport, too!

In a couple of weeks, I’ll be driven to a hospital for a CT scan that will let the doctors know more precisely what they’re dealing with. Then onto the surgery. The vet says I’ll need to stay in their hospital for a few days to make sure that everything is flowing inside correctly and that I’m healing properly. I already know I’ll miss my foster family while I’m gone.

Meanwhile, I’ll continue enjoying my toys (especially my antler), my foster family, and going to school. Yes! Foster mom started me in a puppy socialization class. She said I’m a “star”! Not only that, she says I’m smart, compliant and enjoy the play time, too. Between foster mom and the class, I’ve learned the commands, “sit” and “leave it”. She’s proud of me because I come when I’m called. And why not? I’m always excited to see foster mom!

Please don’t worry about me going through this surgery. Foster mom says I’m “fearless”. The vet is smart and nice, and I’m sure I’ll get lots of extra hugs from caring people. If you would like to contribute to the cost of the surgery to make me better, that would certainly be welcome. Depending on the CT scan and the findings when they see inside me, I’ve heard the cost is estimated to be between $3800 and $4500. You can help As Good as Gold with a donation.

I just heard the puppy next door barking to play with me, so I must sign off. Have a colorfully fun autumn!

Willow

Post-surgery update: Foster mom was right when she said Willow was fearless! The little girl came through her surgery very well on 10/2. She ended up having bilateral ectopic ureters where both sides weren’t connected correctly to the bladder. Her kidney was fine and her bladder was in the right place, so those things didn’t need to be fixed. She has been very happy and wanting to be playful, but as a 5 month old puppy she doesn’t understand the need to keep quiet to heal due to the sensitive area of this surgery. It will be 1-3 months before we know if the surgery was entirely successful, but we are happy to report things are going well so far. We will keep you posted on Willow’s progress.

Willow in her pool