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Therapy dog needs donations for vet bills

October 8, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
A therapy dog that helps patients in Loma Linda feel better is himself facing a serious illness.Bandit, like his name implies, knows how to steal the hearts of those he meets.

"He's a hugger you know some dogs like to lick, well he's a hugger. He'll come in close and wants a hug," owner Carol Bradshaw.

Bandit is a certified therapy dog. He and his owner volunteer their time at the Jerry L. Pettis Memorial VA Medical Center in Loma Linda.

"Oh it's great. It takes the edge off everything else-- petting them, seeing them," said Phillip Broyles who is retired from the U.S. Marine Corps.

But recently, Bandit has become a patient himself. The lovable canine suffered a major setback after he came down with pancreatitis.

"I get teary-eyed, because we almost lost him," said Bradshaw.

While he is not 100 percent, Bandit has not stopped his rounds with his group of furry friends.

The therapy dogs visit the veterans hospital on a weekly basis to help break up the monotony in the waiting room for the patients.

"They're always calming. They make you feel good," said Dave Roland, a patient.

"I love them, I love them. I had a black lab and she passed away from cancer," Janice Cook, who is retired from the U.S. Air Force.

Bandit continues to battle his own illness, but without the insurance to cover the mounting veterinarian bills.

"They've accumulated to almost $3,000 and they're not over yet, because he's still getting checkups. Luckily, we've had some donations, but we've had to borrow money."

For a tax deductible donation for Bandit's medical expenses, H.E.A.L is accepting the donations on Bandit's behalf at:

Sharon Blechinger, HEAL36@yahoo.com

H.E.A.L.
PO Box 30046
San Bernardino, CA 92413
(909) 436-8065

Tax ID# 26-4707994


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