We are pleased to introduce “Romeo”. “Romeo” is an amazing, charming, 8 year old Papillion boy. He has a liver disorder called “Copper Storage Disease”. There is copper in many things we, and our pets, eat. Copper is a necessary mineral, metabolized by the liver for proper cellular function. In normal animals, humans included, excess or unused copper is excreted into bile, a digestive enzyme, and leaves the body through the digestive tract. In some animals either the metabolism of copper is disrupted or the proper excretion into the bile and out of the body is prohibited. Copper builds up in the liver and becomes toxic leading to hepatopathy, inflammation of the liver, and ultimately cirrhosis.
“Romeo” was diagnosed with “Copper Storage Disease” in November 2014 after a liver biopsy. Since his diagnosis he has been visiting us weekly for what we have affectionately named “Romeo’s Spa Days”. He comes in to spend the day with us for evaluation and supportive care. There is only one medication that has been safely and effectively used for the treatment of “Copper Storage Disease”. Unfortunately, “Romeo” was unable to take the medication due to his reactivity to it. This means that we are unable to effectively control his condition. Knowing he is unable to take the medication we are taking other steps to slow the progression of his disease by eliminating “Romeo’s” copper intake, giving him medications to control his symptoms and providing him supportive care to maintain a good quality of life for as long as possible.
“Romeo’s” mom is not only his caretaker but his biggest cheerleader. She has done so much for him through all of this but the love she has for him and he for her is the strongest medicine he can get. Her devotion to his needs is, without a doubt, the reason he is still with us. He is adored by so many. Our staff loves having him here for his “Spa Days”. Caring for him for these past several months has been a wonderful and fulfilling experience. His zest for life has made an impression on everyone around him. Even though his time on this earth is limited, he will not be forgotten and we will love and enjoy him as much as possible for as long as we can.