Today is the day we have let our guard down and started to love this little guy. That might sound harsh - but lets face it, the news to date hasn't been joyful or encouraging and the words euthanise tend to leave you feeling very guarded.
So - what changed - I spoke with Jodie from Helping Paws Vet Clinic in Park Ridge.
Jodie is a vet nurse who thankfully was recommended to me by a long time rescue friend Nicci and I called her immediately. Turns out this amazing human not only has a lifetime of relevant, hands on information about these cleft palate babies and how to care and raise them, but she also has a rescue dedicated to these babies and getting them through the first few months of life until they're ready for surgery and in turn adoption.
I sent ages on the phone and I asked a zillion questions. All the counts and fears and concerns are gone - and we now have confidence and courage to see him through this journey. She has given us hope - these babies can live, can have surgery and can have a long wonderful life. AND, the clinic she works for has a very experienced vet (Belinda) who has performed countless of these surgeries and is just the person we need! Bailey's cleft is, after all, very severe and he needs someone who is well practiced and confident. We will be booking Bailey in soon to meet his vet team.
One main change we have implemented with his care is allowing him to suckle our finger after every feed. This helps him and his digestion as well as comforts him too. But for us, it allows us to connect with him, and we are reminded that we have quite the little fighter here.