Sometimes blogging (journaling) is good for the soul. Unfortunately, not everyone sees eye to eye with what you write or understands the context of what you write. But, that's what makes the world go 'round and I always hope I don't offend anyone. It surely isn't my nature.
About 3 weeks ago, Jet had some rectal bleeding. Not all that unusual for him since he has been kind of an IBS dog since he was a pup. But, he went off his food for a night. I had him on half a rimadyl morn and night for his arthritis which I stopped immediately when I saw he was bleeding. I put him on full liquids for several days gradually bringing him back on to solid food. Plus, we gave him pepcid daily for a week. All seemed fine when I left for Washington.
I still worried about him on my trip. I would call Wayne and not ask about Wayne, but ask how Jet was doing...was he giving him his pills, etc. etc. Wayne said he looked fine to him. Jet was excited to see me return home. He looked fine for about 36 hours. He was being kind of lazy, so when Wayne got home from work on Tuesday I asked him to take Jet to the barn with him. On the way back up the hill from the barn Jet was walking slowly....more slowly than usual.
He came into the house, jumped up on the couch and stretched his head out in front of him drawing his hind legs under him. I said, "Hey, Jet, what's going on?" He wouldn't lift his head to look at me. Most people who know Jet know that he rarely takes his eyes off of me anywhere we go. He is my heart and soul dog. I called to Wayne, "Something is VERY wrong with Jet." We watched him closely for the rest of the night.
As he tried to go up the stairs, he was having difficulty with his hind end? His front end is fairly shot from arthritis, but his hind quarters are strong? Hmmmmm. I examined him in our room and his tummy was tight and he appeared to be grunting with pain when I palpated his gut. His gums were cool and looked a bit gray to me. We got up several times during the night to make sure he moved around and was still with us.
In the morning, he was more wobbly on his hind quarters, couldn't lift his leg to pee, and would not get up to a standing position without help. He also is refusing to eat. He ate last night before going to the barn without difficulty. Another Hmmmmm? I worked the other 3 knuckle brain BC's early in the morning over at Terry's ranch before my Vet clinic opened. When I got ahold of them they said, "Bring him in."
Dr. Lidikay spent almost 4 hours reviewing and going over Jet's symptoms. Money is no object when it comes to Jet, but I want him comfortable with quality of life foremost. Before I loaded him up in my truck I watched him wobble and almost fall over. I thought to myself....sudden onset, vestibular? But, he didn't exhibit any walking in circles or head tilt like I had seen in my Aussies with vestibular disease. So then I am thinking splenic tumor (hot tummy), something wrong with his spine (weakness in his hindquarters)? I wasn't sure what to make of it. I hate shit like that. For God's sake, I'm a nurse!
We did the usual labs once at the clinic. Dr. Lidikay watched Jet walk up and down the hall way. He took belly films and spinal x-rays. One of the belly films showed some sort of mass on the right kidney. The spinal films showed degeneration. Probably no worse than my own spinal films. But, Jet seemed to jump a bit with pressure to his gut on the side with the kidney mass. Dr. Lidikay isn't a certified radiologist, but he has a great ultra sound machine. We placed Jet upside down and shaved his tummy. He didn't move a muscle. I think he fell asleep during the U.S. for awhile. His little buddy, Trouble, was there for him as moral support. She would look at him and wag and he would reciprocate. My Vet looked at his tummy for a good 20 minutes. Bladder normal, spleen normal, prostate normal, liver small, but normal, but the right kidney has some sort of mass encapsulated in it. It doesn't appear to be a fluid filled cyst, because it has some blood flow to it. Another Hmmmmmmm. Dr. Lidikay isn't trained to be able to do an aspirate. It would be nice to know if that tumor is a cancerous tumor or not and that may be our next step.
If it is cancer, what would I do? Probably nothing at age 13. And, I would have think seriously about doing anything if it is non cancerous? Don't know. The kidney is such a vascular mass of vessels. Yuck...one bleeder and he could bleed to death with a nephrectomy. My Dad's second wife had a cancerous mass on her kidney. They removed it and she was dead in less than 3 months. We really aren't sure what the root cause of the sudden onset of all of this is quite matter of factly. I know his tummy has been bothering him off and on for some time now. But, he has been eating all of his dinner and we make sure his poops are okay. Why would he suddenly get wobbly and listless? Sepsis and ???? I'm not sure. Dr. Lidikay did a full neuro exam on him, too. We collected some coags just in case. His platelets were a bit low. We got a UA. His white count is elevated, but he has no fever.
We gave him an injection of Dexamethasone, Cipro, and Baytril. Plus, we are following with pills. We also gave him some SQ fluids for good measure. He is drinking water, but is refusing ALL food. So Dear Dog God above.......if you see fit, please have Jet respond favorably to the treatment. He has been the most fantastic dog a lady could ever have or will ever have in her lifetime. Amen.