Originally published Monday, August 12, 2019 at 08:21p.m.

Meet Gary Cote, Harley and Snickers, a threesome with hearts of gold. Gary, an Army veteran and Purple Heart recipient who served in Vietnam, was a part of Yavapai Humane Society’s Second Chance Medical Program.

Second Chance is designed to provide needed veterinary care to injured or sick animals whose owners are unable to afford normal veterinary rates. It is funded by donations and grants, which provide certain types of emergency medical care to pets if their owner’s income qualifes according to Federal Poverty Level guidelines.

Gary’s dog Harley, a Labrador/Chow/Sharpei mix, was diagnosed with a bilateral entropion, an abnormality of the eyelids in which the eyelid rolls inward. This often causes the hair on the surface of the eyelid to rub against the cornea resulting in pain, corneal ulcers, perforations or pigment developing on the cornea, which can interfere with vision.

The only way to fix this condition is through surgery, so Gary visited his veterinarian and was told that the surgery was going to be $500 to $600 per eye, which wasn’t possible with his fixed income. His veterinarian knew of the Second Chance program and sent a referral form to Yavapai Humane Society’s Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic and that started the ball rolling for Harley.

Gary qualified for the program and surgery was scheduled for his beloved boy. Harley did great with his surgery, and is now a happy, fun loving boy who likes to stay close to Gary but also likes to fetch and play ball with his brother Snickers, go for walks and explore the world.

Gary, Harley and Snickers are all best buds and Gary is very grateful to Yavapai Humane Society and the generous donors who support the Second Chance program for helping keep his four-legged family together.

He said the process was easy and that the team at the Spay/Neuter & Wellness Clinic were very nice and caring.

Dr. Egar, one of the veterinarians at the clinic, performed Harley’s surgery and says that “it is so gratifying to see someone helped because of the Second Chance program.”

For information about Second Chance or donating, visit yavapaihumane.org or call 928-551-0547.

Loree M. Walden is the marketing manager for the Yavapai Humane Society.