A HEARTBROKEN mum-of-two had to tell her boys that Christmas is ruined after being slapped with a £8,317 vet's bill.

Just weeks before the festivities were set to begin, Joely Eaton had to break the news to her kids that their dog needed his leg amputated.

The 29-year-old chose to go ahead with the surgery rather than put her beloved pet, Buddy, down after he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer.

The cleaning business owner, from Sale, Manchester, said: “I couldn’t have put him to sleep, he’s like another child to me.

“We had a scan in October as he was limping, and he was there all day. He is a daft dog so I thought he had jumped off the fence funny.

“The vet said it was probably arthritis due to his age and gave him some anti-inflammatory medication.”

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But a couple of weeks later the Staffordshire Bull Terrier needed to take another trip to the vet.

As Joey was on her way to pick up her sons, Jaeden, 10 and Ollie, 7, from school she received the devastating news.

“He [the vet] rang me and just said, ‘It’s not good news, it’s a bone tumour,' she added.

“He didn’t even bring him round from the sedation, he asked me if I wanted to put him to sleep now and said that, if not, I would have about two weeks with him," she continued.

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“I was just like, ‘No’. The boys couldn’t come with me to drop the dog off and then not pick him up. I told him I would come and bring him home.”

In a desperate bid to save Buddy's life, Joely got a second opinion from another vet who suggested she book an appointment with a specialist.

The devoted dog mum travelled 40 miles to a practice in Liverpool, where Buddy went for a CT scan.

Fortunately they detected the cancer hadn't spread to the dog's lungs and there was a chance of saving his life.

But Buddy would need to have his leg amputated as well as six gruelling and expensive rounds of chemotherapy at £700 a go.

She was also told he may only live for another 18 months, but now he is recovering well and even keeps up with his 7-month-old French bulldog brother, Spencer.

Joely said: “I just told them to do it, I don’t care. As long as he is with us, I don’t care.

“The entire invoice came to £4,299 for the CT scan and the surgery, plus each round of chemo is going to cost £669.68.

“I just said to the boys Christmas is not going to be as good as it is every other year.

Although the cleaning business owner has managed to pay off almost all of the initial vet bill, she is faced with tri-weekly chemotherapy costs plus £1,100 worth of debt from the surgery and the CT scan.

Despite not wanting to rely on others, the 29-year-old added that her mum and grandparents will thankfully provide support if needed.

They have even set up a GoFundMe to help raise money for vet bills.

She added: “I really hate asking for help, but this is just reality at the moment for us.

“With the whole cost of living crisis, a vet bill to pay as well as his chemo to pay on top of that – and it is Christmas."

But according to the Manchester mum, her boys are just glad they have their family pet by their side.

“The boys took it well. My seven-year-old had his birthday recently so he’s not really bothered about Christmas, he’s one of those dead easy, relaxed kids," she added.

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“I just said to them ‘we’ve got Buddy, and that’s all that matters this Christmas’.

“And Jaeden is so close with Buddy, I think he just doesn’t care.”

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