We first met Cam 11 years ago and we instantly knew what a special boy he was. We just didn’t know how very special he was and how he would touch the lives so deeply of so many.
When we first introduced you to Cam, he was a scared, reactive, fear-biting dog who no one could approach or get near. The first step in Cam’s journey came in the form of Pat Whitacre, one of the best canine behaviorist and trainers in the country, originally from Best Friends Animal Society and later, Pets Alive. Pat started working with Cam by gaining his trust, feeding him one piece of kibble at a time through a funnel. One. Piece. Of. Kibble. At. A. Time.
Slowly as Cam’s confidence grew, his circle of friends grew – first with other trainers and then a select few volunteers. We soon learned that once Cam accepted you into his “club” you were in for life – and there wasn’t too much he wouldn’t happily go along with. From being dressed up in tutu’s to letting volunteers paint his nails and brush his teeth, he never disappointed them by rewarding them with anything less than some of the best slobbering kisses to be found.
Talk to any member of his “club” and you will feel the unconditional love between Cam and his people. They remember the first breakthrough they witnessed. Whether it was him walking like a gentleman on a leash with a trainer or sitting nicely while volunteers froze eating their lunches at the picnic table and the trainer would say “Guys, you can move – he’s fine”. They will tell you about the first time Cam gave them one of his famously wet slobbery kisses and how they felt like they were now part of some exclusive club and that they had been accepted by none other than Cam. To be accepted and to be loved by Cam is a true gift and each and everyone of us in the “club” are honored to have been chosen by him.
Over the years, Cam’s “club” has grown and his fears have lessened. While he still gets nervous in high stimulation situations, he now looks to his “club” members to reassure him instead of lashing out. While we have yet to find the family who is able to put in the time and take a chance on Cam, we have never given up trying or hoping for them and are blessed to love him and care for him until they come along.
Recently we noticed Cam was a little wobbly in his back end. Being an older boy and a pleasantly plump one at that, we weren’t too worried but wanted to make sure it was just his age catching up with him. We did some blood work and our veterinarian found he had some elevated levels that were of concern. Cam was sent for x-rays and an ultrasound at our local vet’s office. Much to our shock, a mass has been found on one of Cam’s lungs…
It has hit us hard here at Pets Alive and the members of the Cam Club. Our love. Our heart. Our larger-than-life Cam is sick. It can’t be. It’s our invincible Cam! He is OUR super star. He is the heartbeat of everything Pets Alive is and stands for in every way, shape, and form.
With enormous thanks to the very generous members of the “club,” Cam’s medical expenses are fully covered and he has already been sent for a CT scan and an EKG. As we all hold our breath waiting for news, we hold our beloved Cam tight, knowing our love will see him through. We will keep you posted on his progress and we will keep sharing your love with him as we go through this together.