After the severity of the diagnosis had set in, it was time to decipher a plan of attack to give Sophie a fighting chance. She would also be placed in the Animal League's Foster Care Program, which would at the very least ensure that she would be in a loving home for however much time she had left. The responsibility of being a foster parent is not easy, but fostering a dying animal is a job only a strong, selfless, warm-hearted individual could tackle. Animal League Team Leader, Josephine Brugueras, decided she would be the one to foster Sophie.
"When I first met Sophie I was a little hesitant because she's a big dog and is known to be somewhat people selective, but it didn't take long for us to connect," said Josephine, who got to know Sophie very well when she would transport her to medical appointments at the Animal Medical Center in New York City. "Once we found out about her diagnosis, and I was sure she'd get along with my two dogs at home, Luca and Baci, it was an easy decision. Whether she had four weeks to live or four months I wasn't going to let her spend her final days in the shelter."
Jo, as she's known around the Animal League, decided she'd take over the responsibility of caring for Sophie, but she refused to let her diagnosis be a death sentence. With the backing of the entire Animal League staff, Jo took her ailing friend back to the AMC and found Sophie a veterinary oncologist. Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Maria Camps started her on a low-dose chemotherapy treatment, as well as a medication to regulate her liver. After consulting with all of the doctors involved, Jo also reached out to Dr. Jiu Jia Wen of the Hampton Veterinarian Hospital, who is well-known for combining holistic care with conventional medicine. Jo said there was no limitations on the lengths she'd go to give Sophie a chance to beat this wretched disease.
For six months Jo supported Sophie through an arduous routine of countless doctor visits and daily medication schedules, all while holding out hope that her new-found friend would miraculously pull through. Being careful not to be too optimistic only to be let down if treatments didn't work, Jo said she was amazed at how Sophie's body responded. Her appetite came back and she immediately began to gain back the weight she lost. Her energy levels kicked back into gear, and she began acting like the old Sophie again. Then, in what can only be considered a medical miracle, Animal League Veterinarian, Dr. Briana Mirchel, who played a big part in Sophie's diagnosis and treatment, told Jo the news she never thought she'd hear. Sophie's condition had dramatically improved over the past half a year and she was in "clinical remission!"