Our story much like many makers started at home in our kitchen with a few mason jars and the wrong sized wicks. We were on a quest to find a candle or home fragrance that didn’t leave us with blinding headaches and a house full of toxic chemicals. After countless hours of research, we had discovered that a few key chemicals used in most traditional & conventional candles would be the contributing factors.
So began our search for quality ingredients that were not only safe for us but for Gray as well.
We experimented with different products like soy and other blends but would ultimately discover that coconut wax is one of the cleanest & coolest burning waxes. Not only is it ethically sourced, it also reduces the impact on our planet. Having found the key to combining our passion for creating and our love for animals, this would then give us the cause we burn for…Rescues.
We found Gray on a Rescue site in the winter of 2014, he was a 1 ½ year old with 50 pounds of muscle butt that would complete our family.
During the holiday season of 2016 Gray began acting a little out of sorts. Late in the hour on Christmas Eve he seemed withdrawn, eating irregularly, and lastly a color change to his coat & gums indicating something was very wrong with him. Being a 4-year-old “pack animal” he had been really good at hiding the severity of his illness until he simply couldn’t. At that time we immediately headed to our local ER Vet where he was taken back for x-rays. They quickly determined he was in real trouble and that they were not equipped to handle his very specific needs. We were told,
“If you don’t get him to LA tonight there’s a very likely chance he will die”.
There we found the answers we needed to the truth we didn’t want. As it turns out he had a very serious infection (origin still unknown) that was filling his pericardium with fluids, obstructing his heart & lung functions. After several attempts to tap his heart and drain the fluid, it was determined that surgery was his only chance for survival.
Two days later Gray would be released into our care and put on a regimen of antibiotics & steroids which had a 50/50 chance of causing more harm than good. The next few days were the longest days of our lives as we waited anxiously for the one thing that could save our boys life.
SURGERY DAY! Gray’s Surgeon gave us the rundown of what he discovered and found himself at a loss for words…” I’ve been doing this for over 30 years and I’ve never seen anything like what I saw in Gray”. It simply wasn’t one thing that caused his illness, ultimately he had a bacterial infection resembling a caterpillar poultice that was removed along with the pericardial sac around his heart. Days later we would finally take him home and begin the healing process.
For us, this experience was not only heartbreaking but eye-opening. Thankfully we were able to cover the expenses by maxing out our credit cards & selling our car. We knew this was only one story in what unfortunately Rescues & families around the world go through daily. What was once a dark time would transform into the beginning of our mission to help others & give back.