Family Pet on the Mend Thanks to Alice T. Whitney Helping Hands Fund

Emma, a sweet 10-year-old Chihuahua, was brought to Boston Veterinary Care (BVC) because her owners noticed her belly had become bloated and assumed she was putting on some extra pounds. She was also lethargic and was not acting like her normal self.

Upon examination, it was discovered that Emma had a very bad infection in her uterus, called pyometra. The infection was now in her bloodstream, causing the belly bloat and making her extremely sick. Pyometra, if not treated quickly and aggressively, can be life-threatening.

Alice T. Whitney Helping Hands Fund

Emma needed surgery — a $1,350 surgery. Her owners love her very much, but could not afford the supportive care and emergency surgery needed to remove the uterus and kill the infection. Fortunately, Emma’s owners qualified for the Alice T. Whitney Helping Hands Fund, which provides financial assistance to families with limited economic means in veterinary emergencies.

Despite some concerns, the decision was made to move ahead with the procedure.

“She was so sick, we were not sure she would survive the surgery, but everyone at BVC fell in love with her and wanted to give her a chance,” said Dr. Nicole Breda, BVC’s Lead Veterinarian. “Without the surgery she would not have survived much longer.”


Emma showed her toughness, and the surgery was a complete success. During her follow up, Emma was alert, playful, and her belly bloat had somewhat subsided. She is healthy and back to being herself. Her owners have their beloved family pet back and gleefully exclaimed to Dr. Breda how happy and thankful they were for BVC and the Alice T. Whitney Helping Hands Fund. To see more of Emma click here!

Give homeless animals and family pets the chance to heal  

Animals with serious medical conditions as a result of illness, accidental injury, neglect, or abuse make their way into the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) every single day with no one to cover the hefty expense of emergency surgery, treatment, or rehabilitation.

When you make a gift to the Alice T. Whitney Helping Hands Fund, your donation will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $25,000, to provide financial assistance for:

  •   Critically ill or injured homeless animals that come into ARL’s Animal Care and Adoption Centers with no one to care for them.
  •   Clients of Boston Veterinary Care, a clinic supporting the programs of ARL, who want to keep their family pets, but do not have the economic means to pay for their veterinary expenses.

Only with your support can animals in the most critical of need receive the high-quality veterinary care necessary to gain a second chance at life. Click the red button below to…