May 27th 2008 7:06 pm
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Hey Furry Friends,
I hope that you all had a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!
As of the last post, as you might remember, I was throwing up and was constipated for days. The vet was having me take the acid reducer to hopefully calm that situation. When the dosage suggested was not working, dad doubled the dose. Dad also started giving me the unflavored Pedialtye liquid to replenish my electrolytes. Well, this past Friday morning, I threw up once again. Thankfully, I have not thrown up since then.
In regards to my constipation, as of Friday as well, my bowel movements were improving. Things were looking good finally and Dad was hopeful that I had beaten the GI tract upset on both ends. Sunday morning, however, my bowel movements started taking a turn in the opposite direction. Later Sunday, I went from runny bowel movements to diarrhea with what appeared to be mucus-like strands of blood in it.
Moving forward to Monday, the vet was not open, so Dad decided to wait this situation out till Tuesday and see if, in the meantime, the bowel movements would improve any. In addition, Dad kept me hydrated with water and the Pedialtye still. The bowel movements, unfortunately, only got worse and now with fresh blood that was obviously coming from the frequency of the diarrhea.
Moving forward to Tuesday (today), Dad called the vet and was waiting to here a response as to whether to bring me in and/or start giving me something additional to help settle my lower GI tract. The vet called back and, based on my current condition, decided to start me on a medicine once a day, starting tonight, to hopefully clear up the diarrhea, and hence, the blood associated with it. (Since I have been eating fine, the throwing up has stopped, and Dad has been pushing enough fluids to keep me from dehydration, the vet feels this is the best option to start.)
Moving forward, as I write this email, my mommy is on her way to pick up and bring back the medicine for me. The vet said we should start to see an improvement within 24 hours. If we don’t, and/or I get worse, then the vet advised Dad to get me in to see him and see what the underlying cause is.
In closing, I hope everyone has a pleasant week. I will keep you updated on my progress.
May 21st 2008 5:32 pm
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I had my stitches out on Tuesday and all is well there. In addition, my tumor was checked. I am happy to report that the tumor has shrunk to one-third of its original size in less than two weeks of being on the Piroxicam. The vets are even impressed at how quick the tumor is shrinking.
On the not so good end, I have been sick on my stomach, off and on. I got sick late Sunday night and early Monday morning. By Monday evening, I was doing better and yesterday was going well. Earlier this morning, however, I got sick again. On top of that, I am constipated.
The vet thinks it is a delayed reaction to the Piroxicam and that it could be upsetting my upper and lower GI tract. The vet has advised a daily dosage of an acid reducer due to the harshness the medicine has and can have on my system. Hopefully, with any luck, I will be back to normal in a few days. I will keep you all updated.
May 11th 2008 9:41 pm
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I hope everyone had a good week and a pleasant weekend. For the mother’s out there, I hope you enjoyed your Mother’s Day. This includes pet parent Mom’s and human parent Mom’s.
To update everyone, the vet called my Dad on Friday morning with my biopsy results. In regards to the cysts on my ear and head, the vet could safely say that they were both benign. Thankfully, these cysts were nothing more than cysts.
The results of the tumor biopsy, unfortunately, came back as cancer. My type of cancer is called “Transitional Cell Carcinoma.” Due to the location of the tumor and its stem, there is no option for surgery, nor is there a way to get rid of the cancer.
There is, however, a treatment to help slow the progression of this cancer. It is with the use of a medicine called Piroxicam. This medicine is meant to shrink the tumor itself and keep it from growing or slow down the growth process. In addition, it can also help slow or stop the growth of the stem if the tumor can be shrunk down enough.
I am currently taking this medicine once a day. If this medicine is successful, I will be taking it once a day for the remainder of my life. The vet said that he has seen dogs with this cancer and medicine live up to three years. If we are fortunate enough, maybe I will be around for a good while still.
On the downside, there is no real life expectancy given. With or without treatment, once the tumor itself grows to where it cuts off urination, I would have to move on to a better place, as there is no humane solution in re-routing urination in this case. Loss of live without euthanasia would occur within days and is said to be a very unpleasant way to leave. "That is just not an option", my Dad said, "he could ever put me through."
Moving forward, you might wonder how we will know whether or not the medicine is working. Starting at two week intervals, I will be periodically checked by the vet to determine growth or shrinkage of the tumor. This is usually able to be done by feel alone. If that method does not work, the vet said there are other methods to determine tumor size.
On a positive note, the vet did mention that this type of cancer is slow growing and, as well, cannot spread to other parts of the body. The furthest the stem could grow would be to the bladder wall and attach itself there. This is all good news when you think about what could be worse for me.
Moving forward, I am sure everyone wonders what life changes this cancer might mean for me. In the long-term I cannot say. In the short-term, however, there is plenty to be said in terms of my life. I am full of life and love as always. I will continue to do Pet Therapy as long as I am able to. And, come June 22nd, I will celebrate being 15 years old.
Dad said I will continue to be celebrated as “Daddy’s Little Girl” and that his love for me will only grow. Dad said he will be by my side and me by his. We will be together till the very last day. Till when we have to say goodbye to each other.
In closing, thank you for all your kind words, thoughts, and prayers. Please continue as I will continue to keep you all updated on my progress. Have a wonderful week.