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Community comes together to help Felicity

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GOUVERNEUR — A group of fitness instructors are banding together to help pay for an expensive medical procedure for Felicity, a spirited 20-week-old yellow Labrador puppy.

Felicity is suffering from a congenital bladder defect called ectopic ureter. If left untreated, Felicity’s condition could become life-threatening, Northland Veterinary Hospital veterinary technician Aimee L. Clark said Thursday.

“She is will have chronic urinary tract infections, kidney tract infections, scalding on her skin and can’t be housebroken because she is unable to control her bladder,” Ms. Clark said.

The surgery, which has to be performed at a Cornell University Hospital for Animals, Ithaca, will cost $3,000.

But local Turbo Kick and Zumba instructors have decided to band together to hold a fitness fundraiser at 6 p.m. March 28 at the Hermon Fire Hall, 109 Church St.

Turbo Kick and PiYo instructor Peggy M. Harper of Russell said she and several other instructors decided to team up after seeing a picture of Felicity on the social media website Facebook.

“Each instructor will lead in 20 minutes of different types of fitness exercises,” Mrs. Harper said. “There is no cost. We are just asking for donations. There will be some raffles held throughout the evening, too. Friends 4 Found Paws is a just a wonderful organization that does a lot of wonderful work, and we thought this would be a fun way to raise money.”

Several other community members have joined the cause. Madrid-Waddington Central technology students are constructing a dog bed to be raffled off, while Canton elementary students are making dog toys, Mrs. Harper said.

Friends 4 Pound Paws, which has rescued over 200 neglected and abused animals since it was found in May 2011, rescued Felicity after she was found abandoned in an apartment.

While the rescue is looking to build a kennel and office on three acres of land in Gouverneur, animals, including Felicity, are staying with foster homes throughout St. Lawrence County. Felicity has been staying at Northland Veterinary Hospital, 248 West Barney St., for the past three weeks while she is treated for a urinary tract infection caused by her condition.

“We save some of the saddest animals,” Friends 4 Pound Paws Chairwoman Clover J. Forsythe said. “We rescue most pound dogs and they are loaded with parasites, infections and behavior problems. This is the first dog we took in that had a real serious medical issue.”

Felicity, who loves to play in snow banks and mud, can go on to live a normal happy-go-lucky life after the procedure, Ms. Clark said. Several people have already inquired about adopting Felicity, Ms. Forsythe said.

“She has a great personality, and she will make a great pet to any family,” Ms. Forsythe said.

To donate to Felicity’s surgery, visit www.gofundme.com/7g71u4.

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