'Band of Builders' helps South Shields woman whose dog saved her life by detecting she had cancer
Tess Robison, of South Shields, hit the headlines last summer after telling reporters that if it wasn’t for her dog Lola jumping on her stomach and smelling her breath, her low-grade serous carcinoma (LGSC), a rare form of ovarian cancer, may have gone undetected for longer – risking her life.
The 41-year-old grew concerned about her condition and visited her GP where shes was rushed to A&E and was diagnosed with stage three LGSC.
Tess underwent a 12-hour operation to have a full hysterectomy and during the surgery, it was evident that cancer had spread to Tess’s bowel.
Tess said: "For about ten days in the run-up to Christmas in 2020, Lola just wouldn’t leave me alone and kept smelling my breath at every opportunity.
“I’m convinced she was trying to tell me something, but it was only when she jumped on my tummy that I realised something was wrong.
“I owe my life to Lola because she clearly knew something was wrong, and because of her I was able to seek medical help sooner.”
Friends of Tess told her and husband Paul – who is a plasterer – about the support offered by Band of Builders (BoB), a registered charity that completes practical projects to help members of the UK construction industry who are battling illness or injury.
After contacting the charity, BoB agreed to transform Tess and Paul’s back garden to make it more peaceful and relaxing space for Tess to continue her recovery from chemotherapy.
Half a dozen tradespeople from the BoB community have answered the call and volunteered their time for free to complete the project, which will take place on March, 19 and 20. The main element of the project will be to build a new decked area in the garden so that Tess can sit outside and enjoy the sunshine.
Project lead Kent Taylor said: “The Band of Builders community never ceases to amaze with its ability to rally round and volunteer on projects for fellow tradespeople and their families, working on renovation or repair projects that make a real difference to their lives.”
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