3 minute read

Lisa’s Story


Animals and humans share special bonds, and those bonds are even more important when a family experiences trauma and loss. The mutually beneficial relationships we experience as pet parents enrich our lives.

‘They Saved Us’

“When I first heard about One Health Organization in 2015, I couldn’t believe a place like this existed to help people like us hang onto our animals and keep them in good health. This is so much more than just paying vet bills; it’s about keeping families together.”— Lisa

Lisa is a pet parent who has experienced more than her share of life struggles. She is a single mother raising two sons after leaving a physically abusive relationship. Declan, 24, is severely autistic, and Kyle, 14, has PTSD from the trauma their family experienced. Lisa has skin cancer and developed an allergy to chemotherapy. Then she lost her job.

Before coming to live with Lisa’s family, the family’s two pets also experienced abuse. Their cat, Daisy, was abandoned with kittens before they adopted her; she is specially bonded to Declan. 

Their lab mix, Magellan, was a survivor as well. He was found emaciated and abused in a ditch. At just 23 pounds, his front teeth were pulled out, his legs were broken, he was covered in scars, and had parasites, and was positive for heartworm. 

“Everyone in our household, two‑footed and four‑footed has struggled in some way. I very strongly believe that as much as we humans saved Magellan and Daisy, they saved us,” says Lisa. “They helped us through illness, heartache, and loss.”

Alleviating Stress and Pain

As a pet parent, Lisa needed help to cover expenses to help her four‑legged family members heal from their past traumas. “In my situation, money is tight and I have a great deal of stress and health problems,” says Lisa. “Before I learned about One Health Organization, I worried about paying for our pets’ yearly checkups and shots as well as the medication that Magellan needed for stomach issues stemming from his abuse.”

Vouchers to the Rescue

Thanks to donors to One Health Organization, Lisa was able to receive Vouchers, which are worth up to $250 to cover essential veterinary care. She used the Vouchers to see Dr. Mark Carlson at Stow Kent Animal Hospital. The assistance helped heal her pets from their past neglect so that Lisa could focus on her own recovery.

“When I first received Vouchers from One Health Organization, my cancer struggles had just begun, and my longtime boyfriend walked out, leaving a hardship,” says Lisa. “Voucher assistance has not only eased the financial burden; it made it possible for us to keep our beloved pets and therapy animals.”


Emotional Support

As Lisa and her sons recover from the hardships of abuse, their pets have eased the burden, providing emotional support. “Magellan and Daisy have been faithful companions to us on our journey,” says Lisa. “I think of them as our emotional support animals. Daisy is never far from Declan, who is homebound. She sleeps with him and keeps him company.”

Magellan and Kyle also shared a special bond. “Magellan plays with Kyle non-stop,” says Lisa. “And when Kyle is worried or sad, Magellan lets him literally wrap himself in his furry neck rolls. Kyle has fallen asleep many nights lying next to Magellan.” 

Lisa says Magellan has also provided comfort to other children who have experienced trauma. “He lets them pet and hug him real tight,” she explains. “Honestly, I’m surprised that dog has any fur left. I think he says to himself, ‘It’s okay, I’ve been there, too.’”

Help a Family Like Lisa’s

Many families in Northeast Ohio could use the kind of assistance Lisa received to keep her family healthy. One Health Organization plans to fund Vouchers for at least 170 eligible households this year. 

Lisa believes her animals are essential to her family’s mental and emotional wellness. Your contributions bring joy and healing to families like hers. 

“Both of our pets lived through so much, and I’ll do anything to save them from sickness and pain,” says Lisa. “I am so grateful to One Health Organization for helping our household. It helps us take care of each other and be our best selves.”

Thank you in advance for becoming a partner in this important mission. 

Donate for Access to Veterinary Care

Sad Update to Magellan’s Story

Magellan my dog

One of the hardest things about being a pet parent is having to let go when an animal can no longer live without pain. Humans usually outlive our pets, and sadly, Magellan needed to be euthanized after other options no longer worked for him. 

Lisa is grateful that she was able to provide Magellan with a peaceful and humane death with the help of her veterinarian and the Vouchers she received. 

Euthanasia can be the best option for pets like Magellan with a medical condition when other treatment options are no longer helpful. Vouchers help families like Lisa eliminate the pain and suffering that Magellan would have otherwise endured. Please keep Lisa and her family in your thoughts and prayers as they mourn the loss of their beloved Magellan.

As Lisa explained in her message to us, the family still lives with their cat, Daisy. We know Daisy will provide comfort during this difficult time.