Simone Burkeen & family

I’ve known Simone since 2004 or so; met her through the Yahoo Dachshund group that Benny Archuleta created. We connected over her beloved Emmett … who really was a master teacher in a Dachshund body. He was a bit like Yoda, or Obi-Wan. Emmett had injured his back, and their regular vet told her that he’d never walk again and she might as well get used to the idea.

Well, Simone wasn’t willing to accept that. She pursued an active course of acupuncture, chiropractic, supplements, crate rest … put it all in a spreadsheet.  In about 6 weeks, Emmett ran, a bit wobbly, into that vet’s office, and they never returned there. Simone was always willing to talk to someone about what she did, and share her information, or just virtually hold someone’s hand.  She got a great lesson in why to follow strict crate rest, and shared that wisdom.

In mid-2005, Simone adopted my foster Roman … this was one of only a handful of Dachshund which Benny allowed to be adopted out of state via Dachshund Rescue Web Page, the rescue group he ran for years.

I flew with Roman across the country to my home state of California. Never having met me before, Simone picked us up at the Fresno airport, brought us to her home, and I stayed with she and her new husband for a couple of nights.  Over the years, I’ve visited regularly.  Her children I’ve known since they were born, think of me as their long-distance aunt.

Simone and her two children all live with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, which is a hereditary and progressive illness. For years, in spite of this and the life issues related to this, Simone has always been there to rally help for others, to be as a loving friend, has been active in the kids’ school, active in their church, etc. The last couple of years Simone’s health has deteriorated while raising her two children as a single mother, taking care of her own mother after the death of her father, and their pack of dogs, including Chester.

Chester came into the family as a “forever foster” which means that the rescue group will be paying for the lifelong costs of the animal. In Chester’s case, his life prognosis was not good when he came into rescue through a friend of Simone’s. Right from the get-go, Simone took care of some of Chester’s costs to insure he had high quality food. Early in 2017, the rescue refused to pay for any more medical treatment for Chester. This put Simone in the position of having to juggle regular bills such as utilities and food for she and the kids … to insure that Chester had the medical care he needed. He clearly was NOT ready to go. You can find more about this situation in the YouCaring crowd funding started in August. We still have $300 to raise to help Simone make up for the basic expenses she put on credit cards to give Chester the full life he and all Dachshunds deserve. I also created a Halloween fun(d)-raiser to help her with some of their household’s basic expenses.

Simone also has the regular yearly vet costs for the other fur-children in the family to take care of. Anything raised on the family’s behalf will go to whatever Simone feels is their latest priority.  By purchasing some fun items, won’t you join me in helping Simone and her family feel the love that she has so freely given out to so many others?

She doesn’t know I’m adding this (until she reads it) and I know she would be so grateful as it would take significant stress off her. She needs to be able to focus on raising her children, and managing a more significant health issue which has recently arisen. My goal is to find 9 other people to join me in sending just $25 a month which would provide $250 a month to the family that they could count on.

If you’re inspired by Simone’s story and family and would like to help more, perhaps by sending her a little money each month, please contact me.