Nobu - 2 surgeries down, 3 to go!

27 Sept 2012:
THANK YOU!! Today I received a large donation which EXACTLY reached our goal for Nobu's surgeries and took my breath away at the same time. I am so touched by everyone's generosity and simply cannot thank you enough. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!


I took Nobu into foster care when her best friend at the shelter, Chloe, went to her forever home. We were all worried about Nobu's well-being as she is such a timid soul and we wondered what would become of her if we left her to fend for herself, without Chloe. In fact, we didn't want to find out.

The "tough" cases always catch my eye and I was ready and excited to watch Nobu transform from being literally too scared to move, to a dog who can just relax and "be a dog". We are still getting there. It's a slow but incredibly rewarding experience to teach a dog to trust you when they had no trust before. I've never met a dog quite like Nobu. She is the sweetest-natured little girl anyone could wish to meet and you feel immensely privileged when she reaches milestones such as wagging her tail, limping over to you or giving you a little lick on your hand. She is SPECIAL!

What I didn't realise when I took Nobu in, was just how many health issues I would also have to rectify. She is without a doubt a very expensive gal, through no fault of her own, and worth every bit. I have no idea of her past, and if she could talk I don't think I'd even want to know. Whatever led her into the sad and neglected state she was found in must have been too terrible for words.

So that brings us to today...

Nobu needs FIVE surgeries. So far, she has had TWO. Only THREE more to go! :)

Here is a brief summary of her medical history and current issues:

1. Nobu tested positive for heartworm and was treated for this while in the shelter. She is now heartworm NEGATIVE :)

2. Nobu's teeth were in a hideous state, so bad that she could barely even eat. She has had a full dental scaling and five teeth extracted while in my care. She is feeling MUCH better about her mouth! :)

3. Nobu has luxating patella in BOTH hind legs. This is extremely painful and debilitating.

3a.) Her LEFT hind leg is a grade 4, which is the most severe. She had this surgery on Wednesday the 12th of September 2012. She is now recovering in hospital for one week and will need 2 months to recovery fully.

3b.) Her RIGHT hind leg is a grade 3 luxating patella. She will need to get this done when her left leg has recovered.

4. Nobu has not yet been spayed and will need to be.

5. Nobu has a cataract on her right eye. The vet says it should not be ignored as it could cause glaucoma and rupture the eyeball. This surgery will have to be performed by a specialist in Seoul.


- The costs of numbers (1) & (2) above have been taken care of.
- The surgery for 3(a) still needs to be paid. With a hefty discount from my awesome vet, the cost for this is W520,000. (UPDATE: Thanks to all you wonderful people, I paid this bill on Weds, 19 Sept.)
- The surgery for 3(b) will cost the same as 3(a).

The luxating patella surgeries are the most pressing and all I will focus on at this point.

Therefore, the total amount I need to raise for the 2 x luxating patella surgeries is W1,040,000.

If you would like to donate to help Nobu get well, please see below for details.

In Korea:
Clare Mills
Account # 620-203339-430

In South Africa:
C. Mills
Standard Bank
Account: 25-164-593-2
Branch: Kloof

I am working on a PayPal solution!

Nobu and I thank you for your generosity!

You can read more about her journey via her ARK profile:

*** Please be sure to send me an e-mail at [email protected] once you have made a donation so I can keep track of the money and of course, so I can thank you. ***

GOAL: W1,040,000
RAISED: W1,040,000

Donations received:
Thank you so much to:

You Hwan Hee - kindly donated his pocket money to help with Nobu's surgery costs. <3
Caroline Mills - best mom in the whole wide world!
Kallen Young
Tatiana Hopps
Jennifer Yum
Jordan Schultz
Betty Cusator
The Nystroms
Erinn Duprey
Rebecca Kuhn & Allan Newton
Mikyoung, Marley & Lady Bumble Pearce :)
Whi-Hyun & her friends
Vicky & Sergio Cunha
Aalia Jamie
Nicci Maxwell
Julia Yukovsky
Leah, Angelo & Penny Cuomo
Mark Johnson

Tags: luxating patella, surgery, donation


marlajoy's picture

Clare, I so wish I could help you out but unfortunately, with 5 animals, I have literally 8 surgeries to get through (4 down, 4 to go) not to mention the fact that I've had 3 different surprise hospitalizations with my animals. I've got my hands full with vet bills! :) When you orginally fostered Nobu I had really wanted to help you out with costs but I just can't right now. Maybe in a couple months I'll be back on track though. I'll be hoping for smooth speedy recoveries for all of Nobu's surgeries. She's had more than her fair share of challenges.

eveliens's picture

Clare, let me take a look at my finances. Things are a little tight because I need some medical stuff done, Danbi still needs another surgery and I'm going to Taiwan for Chuseok, plus I'm looking to start my Masters degree in a few months, but I'm sure there's spare change there somewhere! I'll let you know when I send some.

clare_bell's picture

Thank you Marla and Erinn! You are wonderful. I know you have your hands full!

clare_bell's picture

Here is Nobu's photo album on Facebook. Watch her transformation! :)

fritzmarley's picture

Morning Clare! Hope Nobu's recovery is going well. On behalf of Marley and Lady Bumble, I transferred 50,000 won to your KEB account. Hope this helps! Mikyoung.

clare_bell's picture

Thank you so much Mikyoung and family!! :) It has been received <3

fritzmarley's picture

Excellent! Hope you will get Nobu home soon!

marlajoy's picture

I have wonderful news, Clare!! Check your Skype messages :)

clare_bell's picture

Thank you all so much! We only have W260,000 still to go!

clare_bell's picture

WOHOO!! Nobu came home today!!

She was VERRRRY forlorn at the vet and I was worried she'd be traumatised by the experience but nope! Not this gal! She came home, made herself comfy on her special recovery bed, ate ALL her dinner, did a wee and a pooh on the peepads and greeted me with a wagging tail when I came home from dinner. All-in-all, looking good!

She limps but she is using her leg again, ever so slightly. She has a cone on and the stitches will come out soon. She's finished her medicine, now all she needs is some time for the bones, muscles etc. to recover :)

Welcome back Nobu!

Thank you to all for the most recent donations. We only have W109,000 to go and then we'll be set for her next leg surgery too!

Yay! Leaving the vet's :)I'm cute with my cone on!You can see my stitches in my back left leg.
marlajoy's picture

Sounds like she's well on her way to a full recovery! yay Nobu!

clare_bell's picture

Nobu had her stitches taken out yesterday! She was such a good girl, as always :) Two more days with the cone on and then it's just plain ol' recovery time! She is walking really well, much better than I even expected!! YAY!!

We are only W109,000 from our goal to pay for the second surgery. Please consider helping out! Thank you!!

Here is a sweet pic of Nobu yesterday at the vet's - she decided to climb onto my bag when I took her comfy sling out from under her to get her in it. There was no ways she was letting me leave her there! :D

clare_bell's picture

Hi everyone!

Yesterday I took Nobu for her follow-up x-ray at the vet's. He is VERY happy with how her bones are looking. The surgery was a success! Yay!!!

In addition, Nobu had a fecal smear done which came back normal, an ear check, they are perfect and everything else was good too (teeth, heart, lungs etc.)

Nobu will have her next patella surgery, using the funds raised here, sometime in November.

Thank you all once again for your generosity which has enable Nobu to feel better and be more mobile.

Here she is one her way to the doctor yesterday :)

Nobu on her way for an x-ray.
clare_bell's picture

Hi everyone, to keep you updated, Nobu is scheduled for her second patella surgery on the 18th of January. She will spend a week in hospital and then she will come home and begin her recovery in comfort with me. As much as I hate to send her in for another op, I know it's necessary and I have noticed she has been limping slightly in the past week or two. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers for a smooth surgery and a speedy recovery.

Thanks once again to all who made this possible with their generous donations.

marlajoy's picture

I will most definitely be thinking about her, Clare, and hoping for a very speedy, very smooth, recovery!! :)

clare_bell's picture

UPDATE 7 March 2013:
Nobu had her second patella surgery and is recovering well in the hospital. She is eating well too, so that makes me happy. She will be able to come home in a week!

The doc said the leg had worsened to a "severe Grade 4" and showed me the photos from the surgery. Even my untrained eye could see where the bone-on-bone rubbing had caused a roughening on one side and an ulceration/inflammation around the area. She must have been in such pain, but she never showed it other than the occasional limp. What a strong girl!

The doctor also removed the pin from her other leg from the first patella surgery.

Thank you for helping Nobu to have the surgeries she so needed!

marlajoy's picture

Yay Nobes! Clare, I had a laugh when I first heard you call Nobu, "Nobes" because I call Chloe "Clopes" hahaha - one more thing they have in common :)

eveliens's picture

Yay! It's amazing the stiff upper lip the dogs have. Tokki needs to get her second leg done, whenever I can scrape together the cash, but she's always scooting around. Hopefully she'll be more comfortable now!

clare_bell's picture

Marla that is SO weird and SO cool! :D Erinn, they are so amazing with how they can spring back from things. She inspires me every day. I hope Tokki can get hers done soon. Nobu is already walking around far better than before!

clare_bell's picture

Update on Nobu:
It's only been 10 days since her surgery and already this girl is scooting around the house. It's incredible! She's such a sweetie and never protests when I put the cone back on her head. (She has been licking her stitches when it's off so I've had to keep it on her when she's not eating her meals.)

Her stitches came out 2 days ago her medicine was finished this morning. Now she just needs to take it easy and slowly heal that leg. Luckily for me, she is far from being a hooligan, so I don't need to worry about her hurting herself. Right now she is snoozing in her bed with the cone on her head, looking adorable!

Thank you all once again for your donations which enabled her to have these surgeries!

marlajoy's picture

Yay Nobu!!! So great to hear about her doing so well! She'll be running around in no time!! :)

clare_bell's picture

Here is sweet Nobes when she was in the hospital after her 2nd luxating patella surgery.

clare_bell's picture

And here she is now, walking so well!