Homeless veteran's dog injured in car crash on way to food bank

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      A dog belonging to a homeless coast guard veteran with PTSD suffered injuries in a car crash on September 11 while the two were on their way to a food bank.

      Now a community fundraising effort is underway to help pay for treatment and tests needed by Rocky, the eight-year-old Staffordshire terrier that has been Gregory Wright's constant companion for the past six years.

      The fundraising is being coordinated by the Regional Animal Protection Society (RAPS), a Richmond-based animal services agency that runs a no-kill shelter and one of North America's largest cat sanctuaries.

      According to a RAPS news release, Wright and his animal companion were travelling through Delta to a food bank when their borrowed car left the road and struck a telephone pole, causing the car to flip over into a ditch.

      Wright, who was diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression when he left the Canadian Coast Guard after serving up North and on the West Coast, was not seriously injured. Rocky suffered broken ribs and a possible spine injury that requires a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan to confirm. Because RAPS' veterinary facility does not have an MRI machine and must pay up to $5,000 for the test, and because total care costs for Rocky could go as high as $20,000, RAPS started the fundraiser.

      Wright, who was renovicted from his home years ago but was unable to find rental accommodations that accepted pets, has lived in a motorhome in various locations for four years. In the release, he praised RAPS for its help so far: "I had absolutely no money and that was not a concern. The concern was the health of my dog. They are absolutely amazing people here.”

      RAPS

      Go here if you would like to make a donation to assist RAPS in caring for Rocky. Call 604-285-7724 if you have any information that could assist Wright in finding housing with Rocky.

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