It was exactly a year ago that our border collie puppy, Tess, was diagnosed with OCD (Osteochondritis dissecans). OCD is a disease of the cartilage that affects the shoulder joint. Tess was put on restricted activity and was seen by 4 different vets and had numerous x-rays to determine the extent of damage to her cartilage. She was also put on an expensive medication for 5 weeks.
Luke, our 10 year old son, began making and selling organic dog treats to help raise money to pay for the vet bills that had accumulated in a short period of time. We began listing Tess’s Treats in our farm’s online shop, http://www.woolhandcrafts.etsy.com and it didn’t take long before Luke’s story and “Tess’s Treats” were spread around the globe. One woman who lives an hour away and owns many gas stations offered to sell the dog treats in her busiest stores. A “dog friendly” B&B in Virginia purchased Luke’s dog treats to give to their guests who brought their four-legged companions with them. A businessman in California began purchasing Tess’s Treats to give as gifts to his dog friendly clients and an artist in North Carolina who makes greeting cards special ordered candy cane dog treats to give out with her dog line of Christmas cards. The most amazing customer was a woman in Singapore who ordered several bags of Luke’s dog treats and paid more money for the shipping than the dog treats themselves. She wanted to support Luke’s efforts to raise money for his puppy. It amazed me how that little package could possibly make it all the way around the globe. A few people sent us checks and said there was no need to send dog treats, they just wanted to help with our efforts.
Luke carefully recorded every order on a spread sheet and kept track of his expenses for ingredients, packaging, and shipping. He also kept track of vet expenses and what needed to be paid for. Our dining room table became the center of all of Luke’s activities both baking and packaging. Tess continued to heal and remain on limited activity as we waited to see if she would need surgery. Within 6 months time, Luke had made enough money to pay for the vet bills and had even nearly enough money to pay for the surgery should it be needed.
In January, after the Christmas frenzy of baking and mailing dog treats was over, we all reflected on what had just happened over the past few months. Our entire family was astonished at the out pouring of support Luke had received. We had found a community of supporters from all around the globe.
Luke wanted to show his appreciation to his customers by donating a portion of his money to the New England Border Collie Rescue Association http://www.nebcr.org/. He wanted to help other border collie dogs who were in need. Luke continues to donate a portion of his profits to NEBCA. This weekend Luke was invited to attend their fund raiser in New York called, Dog Dayz. Luke sold his dog treats and had fun with Tess. Tess won a blue ribbon for her dock diving which Luke was very proud of!
Thank you to all of you who have supported Luke in his efforts to help his dog, Tess and to now help other border collie puppies. You can still buy his dog treats by visiting our online shop at http://www.woolhandcrafts.etsy.com.