updated 11/01

Cinder and her knee surgery

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Cinder's back to work!


November 5, 2001

Cinder is doing real well and is pretty much back to normal. She still does not track correctly on that back leg and she may never, it may just move in a different way. I've seen that happen with horse and they could still work. I guess I just have to be patient and keep up the road work. She's built up some pretty good muscle from all we've been doing and Babe too since she's been helping with the rehab. We still go for runs every day and have increased the distance to about as far as I can handle and she has not shown any signs of soreness. I've also been taking her over to the local park to play Frisbee and she seems to be handling that pretty well. I know when we finally go back to Bark Park I can never let her play as hard as she use to. We have not gone to the dog park because I know it would be hard to contain her (as if I could if I tried) and I'm scared she will hurt herself again. Just could not deal with that right now.

A big thanks to all that helped in Cinder's surgery and getting her back to work,

Jerri, Cinder & Babe

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May 8, 2001

Had Cinder at the vet's early Monday morning for her surgery which took about 2 hours. She did spend the night there because she was not coming out of the atheistic as quickly as the doctor would have liked so I brought her home today (Tuesday 5/8) and seems tired, which is good since she needs to be kept quite, but doing fine. We, Dr. Ceckner and I, decided the best surgery for her was Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy or TPLO surgery which has proven effective in returning a deranged knee to full function, it's amazing what they are able to do now days. If you are interested I have added some of the information on TPLO surgery to Cinder's web site. It does get rather technical but basically the procedure "levels" the Tibial plateau, thereby eliminating the need for the cruciate ligament that Cinder ruptured. In other words, rather than replacing the cable that broke in the first place, this procedure will level the surface and eliminate the need for the cable. In order to do this Dr. Ceckner had to cut the Cranial Tibial reposition it to change the angle from 23 to 7 and screw in a plate to maintain the bone relationship during the healing process, that's about as simple as I can make it.

So now we are on to the healing process and depending on how quiet I can keep Cinder depends on how well we do. She needs to kept on minimal activity for the next 6 weeks while the bone heals which it will do like a broken bone does. In 2 weeks she gets the stitches out, then in 6 weeks we go in for x-rays to see how the bone has healed and if all is going well we start the long process of rehab which will take 4 to 6 months to full recovery. It's going to be a long haul but thanks to Cinder's Angels all this is possible and well worth the work.

Thanks for all you help, support and contributions,
Jerri and Cinder

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April 30, 2001

Thanks to all of Cinder's guardian angel that have found it in their hearts to contribute to the Cinder Fund we have scheduled her knee surgery for May 7th and then it looks like 3 months of rest and rehab to bring her back to full work, I can't wait for this to be over it's hard not having her with me. I just got word from Saddleback Valley Humane Society that there is OVER $1200 IN THE CINDER FUND. We figure the cost will run around $1000 with post-op and rehab, so it looks like we should have more than enough. There may be more money coming in and it would be great if you would still like to contribute because any money left in the fund will be distributed among the local foundations to help others like Cinder. Saddleback Valley Humane Society has been real busy with their Annual Dog Walk Fund Raiser this last weekend and I've heard they have done marvelously.

We went to see Dr. Sanders Thursday 4/26, who is a vet a friend of mine works for, he and his staff are going to donate their services including pre-op work, anesthetic and the place for the surgery. Dr. Sanders does not do the kind of surgery Cinder needs but they do use a board certified surgeon, Dr. Cechner, who specializes in this surgery. Dr. Cechner and I have talked about the surgery, what is involved and I feel very comfortable with what is going to happen. Will keep you posted on the surgery and how Cinder is doing on her recovery.

Well, that's about all I know right now and a big thank you to all of Cinder's Angels,

Jerri & Cinder

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How it started

Hi I'm Cinder and I need HELP!

I am a 7-year-old Lab/Rot working service dog rescued from a bad situation, helping my wonderful partner and friend now but I need a new knee!!!

"Sometimes love is all a person has to give an animal.
And sometimes love is not enough."

About month ago while, Cinder, my service dog who has been a loyal constant companion for the last 5 years was having her free time at Costa Mesa Bark Park when she, as the Vet put it "blew out her knee" and it looks like she needs Arthroscopy Surgery to fix her knee to get her back to work. Unfortunately, at this time, I find myself trying to survive on Social Security Disability and any financial assistance that could be given, would help. Even if I were to retire Cinder at this time due to her injury, she is not ready for retirement and it would break my heart to lose my friend, in good conscience I could not leave her in this condition to something that can be fixed. I will do all I can to get the problem solved but without assistance this will take a while and the longer I wait the less chance of recovery there is. Any assistance with this would be greatly appreciated.

I have had generous offers from a couple of my friend saying they would kick in $20 or so to help. It got me to thinking this is a good way to help Cinder but I did not want to take any money for her myself so I talked to Saddleback Valley Humane Society and have set up a fund for Cinder.

If you or anyone else you know would like to help out they can send a check made payable to SVHS to:

The Cinder Fund
c/o Saddleback Valley Humane Society
25108 Marguerite Suite B 267
Mission Viejo, CA 92692
(Please write Cinder Fund on the envolope & check)

We, Cinder and I, have seen a second vet one that was recommended by Saddleback Valley Humane Society. It is as the first vet said, Cinder has a "ruptured anterior cruciate ligament" or torn ligament in the knee. We don't believe there is a problem with the cartilage but can't really tell without a MRI. The good news is this vet does do that surgery and could do it on Cinder's knee for about $500-$600. The bad news is this vet does not have the facilities to do an MRI or to do arthroscopy surgery (which is about $2000), in other words, she would have to do it the old way and cut her knee open. As I am sure you a lot of you are aware, that means the recovery time is times longer. I know the arthroscopy surgery might be better for her but not having the money for the surgery it looks like I'll have to go for surgery the other way, at least I can get her fixed and back to work.

Due to a freak car accident 12 years ago I was left paralyzed from the waist down. At the time of the accident I was managing/training for an Arabian Horse Ranch. Prior to that, in my spare time, I trained several dogs in obedience so it seemed natural for me to want a service dog to help me through my day. I checked into some of the local foundations that supply service animals to the physically challenged but found long waiting list. Then I heard about Cinder, she was heading for one of the shelters due to her destructive behavior such as chewing carpet and shoes, tearing the molding off the walls, etc... I went to meet her with great hesitation after the horror stories I had heard but the same thought keep going through my mind this animal needs a purpose. From my past experience with animals I have found most animals need to be needed, to work and this is what exactly what I found when I meet Cinder. Well, she has proved herself above and beyond as a service dog and has been a champ in keeping up with me throughout the day, I may be in a wheelchair but you won't find me "just sitting around". Some of the services she provides for me are pulling my chair, finding help when I get myself in trouble, picking things up for me when I can't get to them, like car keys, wallet and getting the phone when it rings. These are just a few of the ways she helps me, more than that she provides me with a sense of security when I'm out on my own or traveling (someone meaning harm is less likely to do so with a dog around).

So, as a friend said, "I'm getting the word out" and if you could help pass it along we, Cinder and I, would be very grateful. This page will be updated on a regular basis but if you or anyone you pass this on to would like to be kept up to date on this situation please email me at cinderg@aol.com.

Thank you, Jerri and Cinder  

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This is only a partial list of people whom I would like to thank for their guidance, help and contributions. This list will be updated.

Saddlback Valley Humane Society


Golden Lantern Animal Clinic
Dr. Tom Sanders & Staff

Dr. Paul Ceckner

Kathryn Langston

Julie Hemstreet

Margaret Hemstreet

Madeline Seymour

Emma Chu

Angels at Superbody Gym:
Ron Martin
Robert Bohn
Lee Ann Stevens
Sue Sickler
Robert & Lizanne Englander
Robert Curtin
Michael Newman
Leonard Sielicki & Family
Product Resultans, Inc

Eric & Melissa Gardner

Joan Heim

Lionel Caron

Julie & Dominic Garino

Roy Odekirk

Elisa Warren

Lee Gale

Susan Brimhall

Howard & Karen Gochberg

Barbara Gates

Fran Moran

Judy Joyce

Julie Miller

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