Eichel the dog’s emergency surgery


KENMORE, N.Y. (WIVB) — Eichel Romano is a fun loving, five-year-old Border Collie, affectionately named after Buffalo Sabres captain, Jack Eichel.

“He just wants to be around people,” said owner Tony Romano. “If somebody comes here, he has to be with us.”

The Romano family brought him home as a puppy, showering him with lots of love. But it hasn’t been an easy road for him.

“For his health aliments, he is such a happy, loving puppy,” said Loren Romano. Eichel the dog was diagnosed with epilepsy, just after he turned one.

“He was with me in the middle of the night and he just started seizing and it’s just terrifying,” she said.

After having eight seizures in one day, the family took him to Cornell to see a vet neurologist. Since then, he’s improved. A few years passed and last month, his family says he wasn’t eating and was acting out of the ordinary.

“He has a very distinct personality,” said Romano.  “So, him not acting like himself was very concerning.” 

After eating a toy, he ended up needing emergency surgery on his small intestine — a procedure that cost nearly $7,000. 

It was an expensive surgery during an already difficult time financially for the family. Tony Romano, a DJ by trade, hasn’t been able to work in nearly a year. But he didn’t hesitate to spend what he had on his best friend, Eichel. 

“If I had to sell the house; I mean I would do anything,” he said.  “That’s how much he means to me and to my daughters.”

Eichel is home recovering now and returning to himself more and more each day. But the Romanos were also warned this surgery could lead to more of them.

“That’s when I had the idea about the GoFundMe,” said his daughter, Loren Romano. “I know it’s a lot and everyone is going through a lot with the pandemic, but I just wanted to help my dad in any way that I could.” 

“As I keep telling my friends keep sending your prayers,” said Tony Romano.  “That’s all I ask.” 

If you’re interested in helping out, head here.

Gabrielle Mediak is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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