Meet Luca - one of more than 21,000 pets in Wales to have received care and treatment from vet charity PDSA in the last year.
The 11-month-old puppy underwent surgery to remove a lump on his side at the Cardiff PDSA pet hospital - and is now back home recovering with his owner Claire Mayes.
29-year-old Claire from Newport says she's indebted to the veterinary team that stepped in to help her beloved pet, who she describes as a "very precious" member of the family.
Claire said, "We couldn't imagine life without Luca. His personality is incredible. He's friendly, bouncy, and loves a lot of fuss. He's also very active and energetic. If he's not on long walks with my boyfriend Gareth, he's playing with his toys. Luca truly does mean everything to me and Gareth. He's full of love, and he has all of ours."
Imagine then, Claire's worry when she noticed a lump on Luca's side. She immediately turned to her local PDSA for advice. Luca was eligible for free veterinary treatment and after an initial course of anti-inflammatory medication, vets agreed to operate to remove the lump under general anaesthetic.
Claire said, "I was nervous about Luca's operation, as he's not even a year old yet, but he was treated so well by all the staff. Everyone was so friendly and explained everything clearly, which helped to put my mind at ease."
Luca's operation went well and he returned home to his loving family later that day with pain relief, a buster collar and instructions for just short walks on the lead in the weeks afterwards.
"Luca's scar has healed perfectly. He still has his big bald patch, but we're only a few weeks from the surgery," added Claire. "He really missed his long walks during his recovery period, so he's very happy to be back outside again. He's back to his bouncy self too, which is a relief."
Supporting The PDSA
The PDSA was founded to provide free or low-cost care for pet owners struggling with financial hardship. It costs over £79 Million a year to provide its veterinary services, which are funded entirely by public support. In 2022, the charity treated ten pets every minute in its 48 pet hospitals across the UK.
Players of People's Postcode Lottery have supported PDSA for ten years raising more than £16.7 Million to date.
PDSA Vet Catherine Burke said, "There are many different types of lumps but, for many dogs, they're nothing to be concerned about and can just be monitored for changes. However, it's always a good idea to get any new lumps checked by your vet or if you notice changes to existing ones. Although Luca's lump was small, it was causing him a great deal of irritation. We were concerned it could be a problem, so it was best to remove it."
Claire said, "Without PDSA, there's no way I would have been able to afford Luca's treatment, let alone his operation, because I'm unable to work due to health reasons. We're so grateful to them for helping him and all their fantastic work."
Making A Difference
People's Postcode Lottery players are helping deserving causes like PDSA make a difference every single day. Read more about the range of Charities that our players support.