DuffyDuffy is an 11 year-old flat coated retriever diagnosed with a synovial cell tumor in his leg.

His owner, Mark, is a priest who founded a Catholic middle school for underserved families in a town north of New York City. Mark tells us that Duffy “has been a source of great joy for 10½ years.”

Duffy is totally attached to Mark, and they spend every day together.  When Mark was a college professor earlier in life, Duffy was the school mascot and was so loved by the students and faculty that he was immortalized with his image in one of the school’s stained glass windows.

A year before Mark contacted the Pie Fund, Duffy was limping and was diagnosed with arthritis.  Twelve-months later he became lame with some abnormalities on his leg which turned out to be a synovial cell tumor.  His clinic recommended amputation, which offers an average survival time of about 2.5 years with a good quality of life.  Without the surgery, Duffy might only have had about 8 months to live.  His doctor was willing to perform the surgery at a significantly reduced rate.  After payments for Duffy’s X-rays, blood work, aspiration testing and some related costs, his owner could cover part of the surgery cost, but needed assistance as his funds are limited.  We learned that Duffy’s owner sacrificed income throughout his life to focus on work that offered help to others in return for more emotional and spiritual rewards than personal income.  In starting up and running his school for underprivileged kids Mark makes do with a small stipend and had partly exhausted his savings with the costs of Duffy’s care by the time he contacted the Pie Fund.

Immediately after the surgery Duffy was doing great.  His owner described him as “full of life and wagging his tail”…and already adjusting well to the change.  A month into Duffy’s renewed three-legged lifestyle Mark wrote to share with us that “his recovery has been remarkable, and after many months he is once again pain-free.  My gratitude to the Pie Fund is without measure.”