December 22nd 2010 10:04 am
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Thank you for honoring Quincy as the Diary of the Day today! We appreciate all the gifts, rosettes, stars, comments, pawmails, and friend requests that we've been receiving from both our Dogster and Catster friends.
I had mentioned previously I would write about some of our memories about Quincy but that won't happen today.
On Monday I took a walk around the neighborhood with Quincy's collar in my pocket. I had not been out of the house for a few days and I'm off this week and Harvey is working.
Some mementos have been ordered, including something for the garden to honor Quincy and Cosmo. We made a donation to the National Canine Cancer Foundation and Quincy's photo is now in their memorial gallery. We were fortunate enough to be able to afford Quincy's treatment but we know not everyone can, so we made a donation in Quincy's memory for one of the dogs needing help through the Magic Bullet Fund. I know there are other organizations like theirs, so I'll be looking into those and/or returning to theirs. We already donate regularly to a couple of other animal organizations.
I had to do some last minute Christmas shopping yesterday so drove to one of the animal shelters afterwards in the area and looked at the dogs and cats. Riley and Caileigh, there was a handsome black and white pup there named Julian, listed as a Pointer, 1 year, 2 months old, who was so well behaved yet curious. They didn't even post his picture on their website and I doubt he'll be there very long.
There are no immediate plans to adopt another dog or two until we know we are fully ready. While Quincy would have been a wonderful role model, we didn't want to bring in another dog after we lost Cosmo so that we could devote our love and time to him. We are so glad we made that choice.
We have loving indoor cats, another huge thing to consider when bringing in a new dog into our family. A few of them have been sniffing around the dog bed and toys, which will remain intact in the house.
I'm not sure if there will be another diary entry before Christmas, so we want to send our sincere wishes to all of you for a joyous holiday season.
~Janet and Harvey
December 18th 2010 6:20 pm
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Harvey and I will be okay. We'll never be pros at losing any of our dogs and cats, but we will be okay.
We are touched by all the messages everyone has been leaving on Quincy's page. I'm sorry if I'm unable to personally respond to each of them.
Every year we enter the World's Coolest Dog & Cat Show and were proud of Quincy when he won the Craziest Tail category last year. It has always been a favorite photo of ours and is the photo Harvey wanted as his main picture. It was taken just around the time he started chemo last year. His hair thinned out alot after that but that never affected his happy spirit.
On Thursday when Quincy made his journey, they announced the winners of this year's contest. The cats had five entries that made the finals and three of them won their categories: Reebok (Stretch and Yawn), Melody (Daredevil), and Joy (Craziest Tail). I saw that they won but it quickly became one of the last things I cared about that day, so we haven't even acknowledged those wins in their diaries and need to do that. However, all the cats have main photos with Quincy in them to honor their beloved brother whom they loved so much.
During Quincy's treatment, the oncologist would fax a report to our family vet after each visit. I was home when the phone rang and I saw on the phone display that the call was from the vet, but I didn't feel like talking and she left a message.
We finally received an email back from the mom of Quincy's best friend Casey, as we had not seen them in about a week or so and they are understandably heartbroken. They loved Quincy so much and Quincy especially loved Casey's mom and would greet her before playing with Casey. We are grateful that Quincy gained a best friend the past year and got so much love from people at the dog park who always asked how he was doing and gave him attention which he adored.
Sometime next week since I am off I will write about some of the memories I have of Quincy. He was a naughty puppy who grew up to be a wonderful boy.
We have family support. My mother always asked about Quincy when she called. One of my awesome nieces helped me tweak Quincy's current background so that it would look more blended when it tiled. I use Photoshop but one of the many things she does for work is design webpages. Thanks again, Christy!
We love you all. Thank you.
December 17th 2010 11:42 am
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Thank you every pup, cat, moms and dads for your continued outpour of special messages, gifts and tributes to our precious boy. I am meeting some of you for the very first time. Even though I've been the one who has maintained all the pet pages, Harvey comes and reads everything when he has time.
I am working from home today and off all of next week. I've been so caught up with work it is a huge relief. Harvey really did not want to go to work today but he was obligated to teach an all-day training class so he went.
First thing I thought about this morning was Quincy of course, but also that Harvey would not be walking him this morning as he always did before leaving for work, rain or shine. We will miss him so much.
I confess that I started collecting things to make Quincy's current page about a week ago. That's why I was able to get it up so quickly yesterday after we got back from the hospital. But while I was doing that, I realized Harvey was vacuuming, mopping the cats' dining room, washing out all their food bowls, and then told me he was going for a walk to the park.
As many of you know, Quincy took delight in collecting tennis balls during his walk, most of which he would find in the bushes near the tennis court at the nearby park. The first thing he would do after coming back from a walk with his Dad was look for me to proudly show me his find. Even when he didn't come back with anything he still came to make sure I knew he was back.
After awhile we'd gather up most of the tennis balls and donate them to the dog park. I counted exactly ten of them this morning all around the house. I will be keeping those.
I also forgot to mention that when we thanked Dr. Kiselow and the nurse for all they did for Quincy the past year, they told us it was a pleasure to serve him. We thought that was such a honorable thing to say.
I recalled alot of things about Quincy starting from when he was a puppy, and I'll share some of those memories in another diary entry. To those of you who mentioned that you viewed Quincy's videos recently, I did the same today.
Thank you all.
December 16th 2010 5:53 pm
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No matter how much more time we would have had with Quincy, it would have never been enough time.
I started this diary entry with lengthy details between last night and today, but I erased it all and decided to shorten them and spare all of you.
I was off today and it became clear to me that Quincy was really suffering so I called Harvey at work and told him he needed to come home, and so he did. I found out then that Quincy didn't even get up to go for a walk with his Dad this morning before he left for work, which is a really bad sign. However, he was very alert.
We knew we could not wait another day to make the obvious decision, as it would be unfair to Quincy. Harvey made the phone call to the hospital and they said Dr. Kiselow could see us at 2:00pm Pacific Time. It was a little after 1:00pm at the time.
I rode in the back seat with Quincy and, seriously, told him how his Dogster and Catster pals loved him, how his family loved him, how special he was, how I was sorry and that it really sucked that he got the stupid cancer, and that it was all going to be okay.
When we arrived at the hospital, a nurse magically came out to assist us. We met with Dr. Kiselow and Quincy had a peaceful crossing. His ashes will be returned to us in an engraved urn in a couple of weeks.
We have no regrets about having Quincy treated with chemo. In his case we feel he did really well and had 14 more months of mostly happiness.
He started seeing Dr. Stephen Shaw at first until his schedule changed and more recently started seeing Dr. Michael Kiselow, both to whom we are grateful for. We are thankful for their expert care along with the care given by the nurses. I even want to add a link here if you want to see what the doctors look like.
Michael Kiselow and Stephen Shaw
For the first time in 21 years of marriage we are officially dog-less. We will grieve as we have no choice, and we know you all understand.
Thank you all so much for sharing in Quincy's life, and for your rosettes, stars, gifts, comments, and pawmails. After some time passes, we hope Quincy will come back once in awhile to visit all of us.
Janet, Harvey, and Quincy
December 16th 2010 1:25 pm
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My dear friends,
My time has come. I'll be going for a car ride with Mom and Dad in just a little while to the hospital where they will help me become an angel.
I wanted to tell you while I'm still here how much I love all of you, and I will take all that love with me when I make my journey.
Please pray for a peaceful crossing.
Mom will write in my diary later.
December 15th 2010 6:40 pm
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Effective today, I will no longer be getting any further chemotherapy. The Mitoxandrone was not effective in reducing the swollen lymph nodes around my neck so now we will just be managing my cancer with some prednisone, antibiotics and nausea pills as needed. There was no need to have bloodwork done today as originally planned.
Dr. Kiselow had another "talk" with Dad while I was in the exam room. I heard Dad tell him that I still get up to go for walks, greet him at the door when he comes home, and how I go sit in front of him for chin scratches. I still wag my tail and play with toys once in awhile, too.
But, I don't eat very much except for chicken or turkey jerky treats and chicken freeze-dried treats. Sometimes Mom will follow me around with a spoon and canned Wellness and have me eat a little here and there. Today she went and bought me some Gerber 2nd stage all meat baby food and I ate about a jar and a half of that.
My breathing is also heavier and we know the prednisone will make me pant more but maybe it will help me a little too.
Mom will be home with me all day tomorrow and she's supposed to call Dr. Kiselow tomorrow to let him know how I did on the prednisone today. Mom will also be home all of next week.
My parents understand the facts and that I'm not going to get rid of the cancer. I started chemo on October 8, 2009, and I've mostly had a great year on treatment, but we know I am not doing so well anymore.
Unless I win the lotto or something, we will not be online here much. I will be hanging out and going for walks for as long as I have a desire to.
I wish all of you a wonderful holiday season with your families!I've been blessed with your love, support, and friendship.
December 11th 2010 3:08 pm
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When Mom and I were getting ready to go see Santa at Petco today, I got so excited just before getting in the car I was actually jumping at her. When we got to the parking lot at Petco I couldn't wait to get out.
There were about five other dogs ahead of me in line and I was behind a nice Bulldog. We took turns smelling each other and his Dad gave me lots of pets.
When it was my turn to get my picture taken with Santa, guess what I did? I barked at him! BOL! Then Mom told me it was okay and walked me over to sit next to him.
Santa asked me what my name was and kept saying Ho ho ho! I saw him pat his belly a few times too. We picked the best picture out of the bunch and then went shopping for some more yummy treats and food for me. Then we paid for everything, picked up my picture and headed home!
Whew! That was quite exciting. I might not need to go for a walk until way later tonight!
Ho ho ho!
Thanks for all your prayers, comments, and gifts.
December 8th 2010 2:16 pm
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I was all excited that Mom came along to my appointment this morning. Dad was happy she came along so that we could ride in the commuter lane!
After we checked in at the front desk and filled out the sheet on how I've been doing since my last visit, a nurse came to pick me up to talk and take notes, as usual, so she got the lowdown.
My parents left me there and went to Petco to buy me more food to add to my smorgasbord and a surprise toy, then they went to the sporting goods store. While they were there, Dr. Kiselow called, but the music playing in the store was so loud they had to call him back from the car (Bluetooth technology works wonders) so they could put him on speaker phone.
So, now we get to the bad and sad part. Dr. Kiselow wanted to hear from my parents what has been going on and they had a very honest and open conversation on next steps. Since my lymph nodes have enlarged again and I'm showing a decline in eating normally, they discussed whether to try another drug or stop treatment.
My parents lost it a couple of times, even though what Dr. Kiselow was saying really wasn't surprising, but he also said that since I'm up and wagging my tail and eating some, he was not strongly against further treatment. However, he said I was approaching the advanced stage of my disease and that he didn't want to give them false hope. In other words, my prognosis is now considered poor.
Mom really lost it when Dr. Kiselow said they've been treating me for over a year now and that they've built quite an attachment to me. My parents have already decided that when it's my time to go to the Bridge that it will happen with their help and not my regular vet because they've loved me and taken great care of me all this time.
My white blood count was normal today, and the recommended treatment was Mitoxantrone, so that's what I received. Along with that I have a bunch of different pills to help with nausea and an antibiotic. We have an appetite stimulant also but we don't want to try it just yet since everything, including the chemo drug, has possible side effects and it would make it harder to tell what is or isn't working.
Before my parents picked me up, they stopped at the grocery store to buy me fresh salmon and steak and then dropped it off at home. When they came to pick me up, I came through the doors dragging the nurse behind me, tail wagging. I got my surprise toy, a giraffe with squeakers, and took it in my mouth right away. The nurse told my parents that I ate a bunch of cookies and then she grabbed more from a jar at the front desk and I ate those up, too.
When I got home, Mom cooked me some salmon and steak and I gobbled it all up and wanted more, but she thought it was time for me to settle down and take a nap, then we'll go for a walk and I'll get more for dinner.
Do you know the old Post Cereal Commercial? Every time I eat something they say "He likes it! Hey, Mikey!"
Guess who I'm going to see on Saturday for the first time? SANTA! While they were at Petco earlier today they found out he was going to be there on Saturday. Dad has to work but Mom is going to take me to have my picture taken with the guy in the beard. She's not really sure if I'll get to choose more than one picture or not, but they print them there. So, we'll plan to scan it for my page.
Mom also brought the camera to the hospital when they picked me up, so we're going to look at those pictures now so I can add a couple to my page.
Each of you have meant alot to me, so don't you ever forget that.
December 6th 2010 7:04 pm
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I got a package in the mail today from my angel pal ZEUS!
There was a very special calendar in the package. It's a SAVE-AN-ANGEL 2011 calendar, dedicated to helping dogs with cancer receive life saving treatments. It's filled with pictures of dogs and Zeus is on the month of March!
But there was an even bigger surprise in the package--a stuffed football, reindeer and snowman! I followed Mom when I saw her take them to cut the tags off and as soon as she put them down for me I went right for the football! I've already put a couple of holes in the football (oops) and tried to carry all three in my mouth to show my Dad!
I'll be adding a few pictures to show you. Thanks, Zeus!
I have an appointment with Dr. Shaw on Wednesday so I'll write another diary entry afterwards. Mom is taking Wednesday and Thursday off so she'll be hitching a ride with me and Dad.
My eating habits go up and down, and my lymph nodes are swollen again, but not as bad as they were a few weeks ago. My breathing is also somewhat labored at times. But, I'm still excited to go for walks, played a little with my pal Casey, and when I played with the toys from Zeus tonight I was very happy.
Guess what I've been eating...canned no-salt green beans. I'll eat a whole can and drink the juice. My job as a food critic has been very challenging for my parents, but they are patient and determined to offer me food on my terms, even if it means several times a day and night.
Dad told Mom tonight that I had really good output! How embarassing to have them discuss my output on a regular basis. But if I have good output it means I am getting enough input, right?
So, we won't say I'm doing great, but we'll say I'm okay. As usual, we'll hope that my numbers will be good enough for me to get treatment Wednesday and more importantly, that the treatment helps.
Love you all,
December 2nd 2010 8:07 pm
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That diary pick column works like a slot machine, and today I'm a diary pick again! Thanks to my pals who sent me pawmails and left me gifts and comments.
I don't feel like talking alot about my health tonight, but I did eat a good amount of dinner after I came back from my walk with Mom.
I'm pouting though because my Dad has to work late and isn't home yet, but he called to check up on me. My parents sure like to talk about me all the time.
Have a good evening, pals, and thank you again for stopping by!
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