Grass Awn Causes Heart Abscess in Hunting Dog

Vet Bill: $12,010.29

Brittany Spaniel suffered a heart abscess caused by a foxtail 

David S. took his best friend and hunting partner, Elvis, out for a hunting trip one weekend, but when they returned home, David felt that there was something not-quite-right about his buddy – and boy was he was right. David shared Elvis’ experience with Embrace.

“In the spring of 2018, I lost my four-legged soulmate and first hunting dog to a number of medical issues and complications, but not until after I spent a small fortune in vet bills trying to save her. To say that I was all-in for her would be an understatement. About that same time, I got a Brittany named Elvis who was a former show dog turned stud dog turned hunting dog. I call Elvis my little gentleman because he is so sweet and well-behaved. I did not want to go through those difficult decisions on pet health care again, so I decided to take out pet insurance. After a lot of research, I selected Embrace.

In January of 2019, I returned from a multi-day pheasant hunting trip on a Sunday afternoon. Elvis had excelled on that trip, putting his two big sisters to shame, and he seemed perfectly normal. But later that night, things changed. I was catching up on email in my office and he was sleeping on the couch nearby. I noticed him get up from the couch and sit with his head down. It was immediately obvious to me that something was wrong, so I walked over to him, asked him if he was okay, and started petting him. He whimpered. I immediately put the other dogs in their kennels and rushed him to the Animal Hospital ER.

He had a high temperature and they kept him overnight to do some tests the next morning. A CT scan indicated that he had an abscess in his chest cavity, but they could not tell where it was. They suspected it was caused by a foreign body and advised me that this was not likely curable using medications alone. At best, he would need to be on antibiotics for the rest of his life and probably be sick frequently. They recommended surgery to remove the abscess, but it would be expensive, and there was a good chance that they would have to take out part or all of one of his lungs.

I contacted Embrace and they were very compassionate and reassuring. They told me that it would be covered by my insurance up to my cap. After that, it was a no-brainer decision. They opened up three quarters of his sternum and found an abscess caused by a grass awn (also known as a foxtail) on his heart sack. They removed both and flushed his chest cavity multiple times. Still there was the chance that there was another one that was hiding somewhere.

I am happy to say there wasn’t, and Elvis has completely recovered (except for a funny haircut). He runs and plays like his old self, and he still has both his lungs. God and Embrace were with us throughout the ordeal, and I am so glad I bought Embrace insurance.”

Elvis's Claim Refund

Claim Details Amount
Actual Vet Bill $12,010.29
Covered Charges $12,010.29
Annual Deductible -$750
10% Copay -$,126.03*
Total Embrace Reimbursement $8,000.00
*Elvis's $8,000 annual maximum was met with this claim. David was responsible for his 10% copay and the amount that exceeded the annual maximum ($2,134.29).
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