Friday, February 06, 2015

When It Rains, It Pours #PowerofThePaw #CancerSucks

They say when it rains, it pours.  Well, if you live in New England, when it snows, it really friggin' SNOWS.  I feel like we're living in a snow globe and some bratty little kid keeps shaking it with all his might. We're expecting over another foot between Sunday and Tuesday. 

They also say bad things come in 3's... and this is one myth I truly want to debunk! 2015 sure is off to a sucky start around here, and now Zeus is in need of your crossed paws and good vibes once again.

It's no secret that my happy old man has been through more than his fair share of health issues.  It's also no secret that he's surprised everyone with his stubbornness and amazing will to live.  We're one month shy of his 14th birthday and that nasty c-word is at it again.

Zeus had a couple of rough nights with what we thought might have been his mega esophagus over the weekend.  However, after a trip to see Dr. C on Tuesday, she confirmed my fears in that what we were seeing probably wasn't mega-e related, but cancer.  He has a soft tissue sarcoma on his front leg that has grown quite large over the past year and a half.  We never pursued removing it because the risks far outweighed letting it be, and Dr. C never thought we'd reach a point where it would factor into his quality of life.  She now feels that it may be spreading to his lymph nodes, as they seemed a little enlarge.  During the exam, she also felt a mass in his abdomen, and got another vet to take a look as well.  We discussed doing an ultrasound with a specialist, but since the other vet is handy with the low-level ultrasound machine they have in the office, we decided to have her take a look.  She saw what she believes to be a 10-15 cm mass on Zeus' liver, but the machine is now powerful enough to see much more.  We also have no idea whether it is cancer, or a benign growth. 

The absolute last place I want to be right now... At the vet with Zeus. We could use some good vibes please... #dogstagram #instadog #seniordog #megaesophagus #powerOfThePaw #CancerSucks #ilovemydogs
Have you ever seen a happier sick dog?  He made a new friend at the vet.
She was going on and on about how handsome he was, and when she
asked his name, I said "Zeus" and she replied, "of course it is."

We decided to continue with his current medications, and add in an anti nausea pill.  We also ran blood work, which came back yesterday.  It wasn't much different than what we ran in November and there were no red flags.  His liver levels are still floating around where they have been, his kidney function looks good and there were no signs of anemia.  I suppose that's a good thing, right?  He had two really good days/nights... and then last night, the vomiting was back.  sigh

Now we have to make a decision on whether or not to go ahead and do an ultrasound with a specialist or not.  While it's a non-invasive test, it is a bit pricey and it won't change our treatment options at all.  It would simply be to look for tumors and to tell us what may be going on with him.  Normally, I'd just say yes and run the tests.  However, with what seems to be never ending vet bills over the past year, we had decided to not pursue any tests that would not change our course of treatment going forward.  While I'd eat pb&j three times a day to get my kids what they need, sometimes reality has to take over (and not to mention, my poor Teutul is waiting on a dental procedure and biopsy of a small lump on his leg, which is going to be upwards of $1,000).  So, I'm not sure we've come to a final decision on the ultrasound just yet.  The "normal" blood work was a good sign, but with Zeus back to another night of intermittent vomiting, I'm not sure what's going on.  And, I'm not sure I really want to know. 

#TBT Zeus & Lola 2007 way before #megaesophagus and #Osteosarcoma #ilovemydogs #ilovemyseniordog #ilovebigmutts #mybabies #throwbackthursday
Throw Back Friday?  Best Friends: Lola & Zeus 2007
way before autoimmune issues, cancer, mega esophagus & arthritis

Please keep my big guy in your thoughts.  While we know we will be faced with tough decisions with him this year, I'm not ready for this just yet.  The pain and heartbreak of losing Lola is so raw. 


Sue said...

I guess this isn't the time to say that we're going to 70 tomorrow. If it helps, my dogs would prefer your snow.

My love to Mr Zeus and hugs to Tut and Sophie too. How are they doing?

Golden Daily Scoop said...

Ugh, Nichole! Seriously, this just sucks big time. They say we are never given anything we can't handle but this is just not right. Keeping you guys in our thoughts!

SissySees said...

We're thinking of you. Life isn't fair. The fur-girls send licks and love!

LBJ said...

You continue to be in our thoughts and prayers. If you ever need to vent, you know the email and I'm always happy to provide and ear or a virtual hug.

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