Chance encounter saves stray puppy with deadly virus

TACOMA, Wash. – We’ll never know why the 6-month-old lab mix decided to wander onto Gwen Noble-Wold’s doorstep Saturday afternoon. But thanks to that fateful decision, he’s now receiving life-saving care for a highly contagious and often deadly disease.

The puppy, whom Noble-Wold named Jackson, is being treated for the parvovirus at the BluePearl Veterinary Partners hospital in Tacoma. Doctors are giving him intensive IV fluids and antibiotics, a course of treatment that typically lasts between 5-7 days.

Dr. Katie Rawlings, an emergency veterinarian with BluePearl, said the puppy is still very sick. But because of Noble-Wold’s intervention, there’s reason for optimism: dogs who are treated for parvo



typically have an 85 percent survival rate.

“Jackson is a very lucky puppy,” said Rawlings. “Parvo is a serious disease, and he would have died within a few days if he hadn’t received medical attention.”

Noble-Wold said she had never seen the puppy before Saturday when he turned up on her front porch, exhausted and emaciated, without a collar or microchip. But when she opened her door, he walked right in the house.

The trouble began that night, when Jackson started vomiting. Noble-Wold brought him to BluePearl, where he was diagnosed with parvo.

Because dogs with parvo must be monitored around the clock, treatment is expensive. While BluePearl is discounting the cost of care, the price of treating Jackson will still be at least $3,000. Noble-Wold said she didn’t really hesitate to pay, although money is tight after launching her own catering business last year.

“I know financially it doesn’t make sense, but my heart just told me that I had to do it,” said Noble-Wold. “In the end, I know it is the right decision.”

To help defray some of the cost and to cover any potential complications, Noble-Wold has set up a GoFundMe site. Those interested in donating can click here.

“Even though we don’t know him very well, we already love him,” said Noble-Wold. “We’re so grateful to everyone who has helped Jackson, and we’re praying that he makes a full recovery quickly.”