Juno recovers, goes home with pal Lucas
By Melanie Tucker | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
It’s the tale of a boy and his dog, but she’s not just any dog. And he’s not just any boy.
After spending a few days at Village Veterinary Hospital in Maryville, a healthier Juno was reunited with her favorite little boy.
Juno, a Belgian malinois, was diagnosed with colitis after being taken to Village on Sunday by his family, Jennifer and Chester Hembree and their 5-year-old son Lucas. Juno is Lucas’ service dog who is very much needed and appreciated.
That’s because Lucas has a rare, fatal genetic disorder called Sanfilippo syndrome that affects his ability to walk and talk. Juno is at his side 24/7 and that is just where she wants to be.
But when Juno became sick, she had to get treatment at Village. Mom Jennifer said Lucas couldn’t understand why his friend was missing; Juno, likewise, was uneasy over being separated from Lucas.
But late Tuesday afternoon, Dr. Edwin Lehman at Village released Juno back to the Hembrees, who took her to their Alcoa home to recuperate and take back her duties with Lucas.
It was hard to tell who was more excited about the reunion — Lucas or Juno, Jennifer said.
Jennifer said she is grateful for the care at Village and the community that embraces her son. Blount County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals initiated a fundraising effort so Juno’s medical bills would be paid. More than $2,700 was raised.
“Now it’s just a matter of getting her to take her medicine,” Jennifer said.
There are still some test results to go over, but the family is hopeful this is the road to recovery they all need. Lucas has suffered numerous setbacks recently as well. He has battled strep throat, e.coli, salmonella and other infections.
Getting Juno back is definitely a positive, Jennifer said.