The past two or three weeks have been extremely busy, emotional, difficult, and anxiety provoking. Due to my new busy schedule, writing my blog every day got pushed out of my daily duties. Once I stopped writing a couple of days in a row, it because a pattern. I stopped writing it on my to do list, and I even stopped thinking about it. Luckily, a follower of mine commented on one of my last posts, reminding me how important it is to keep writing. Blogging is not only beneficial for myself, but it apparently also helps others.
I went for a hike this afternoon with my husband and mother-in-law. We hiked a place called Thunderbird Mountain, which is where we used to take Cash for walks. Cash would always wear his backpack (he was a big dog, 88 pounds). He would carry his water and ours. Every time he saw another person or another dog, it seemed as if he was showing off his backpack, like he was proud to be wearing it. My husband and I spread his ashes over a lot of different places all the way up the hiking trail. This way, he can continue to enjoy hiking. It was extremely emotional; saying goodbye to Cash again, for the final time, was hard. I held onto his ashes all day. Letting go of him was difficult, but it was actually a little easier than I expected because of the way we decided to say goodbye.
Over the past week, I have been getting a rash that seems to keep growing every day. It’s extremely itchy and annoying. My doctor doesn’t know what it is, but it’s not contagious. They do know that it’s not chicken pox, mumps, measles, or shingles. We’re trying to figure out what the cause could be. The rash didn’t start until a week after we moved into our new house. Oh well, I just have to put up with it and try not to scratch until it goes away.
My mother-in-law invited me to go out with her to a meeting and then out to dinner afterwards. Normally, I find ways to say ‘no’ when I’m asked out by other people, but this time was different. I’m still getting over the loss of my dog, Cash, and my mother-in-law knew that I was struggling with the situation. She invited me out, saying that it’s better than being home alone, and she was right. I’m glad that I said ‘yes’ and the two of us went out together.
It’s been hard being home alone. I’m used to Cash always being there. I keep looking for him whenever I want to do something or go somewhere. I’m not ready for another dog, but I’m also not ready to be home alone by myself. I’m extremely grateful that my mother-in-law invited me out for the night.
Today was another day of missing Cash. Every time I walked into my house, I expected to see him at the door, eagerly greeting me. When I’m cooking in the kitchen, I expect to see him anxiously waiting to clean up the mess that I left on the floor. Basically, I keep thinking that he will be there when I look over my shoulder. I know that this won’t really happen. I can’t wait for this instinct to stop.
I have received many nice phone calls, emails, and text messages from friends and family, all of which are giving me their condolences. It’s so nice that all of these people care enough to send me their kind thoughts and words. I’m doing my best to say busy. It will help me process and deal with everything that has happened.
I had another ECT treatment today. When I woke up, I had completely forgotten that we lost our dog, Cash, yesterday. My husband had to remind me. Basically, it feels like I lost him two days in a row. This is exactly what I was fearing. I had a feeling that this would happen. I just need to make it through today. I’m taking it one minute at a time.
Today was a very tough day. When I woke up this morning, I came out to the living room to see my dog struggling to breathe. Last night, we invited him to come sleep in the bedroom with us; however, at some point during the night, he decided to come out to the living room and lay down on the tile. My husband and I noticed around 7:30am, that he wasn’t eating or drinking, he couldn’t stand or walk, and his breathing was extremely labored. We could tell that he was in pain. I think he was trying to tell us that it was time for him to go, he was ready.
We had to carry him to the car, which was very difficult (he’s 88 pounds). They had a couple guys come out to help bring him inside. They told us to let them know when we were ready. We decided that we were ready right then. Cash was in so much pain, we didn’t want him to stay in that much pain. We didn’t want to be selfish, it wasn’t about us, this was about him.
Watching him go was extremely difficult. Cash’s eyes didn’t close, it was hard to watch. I cried, which I did many times today. We will pick up his ashes when they are ready. We decided to take Cash on one last hike (it was my husband’s idea). Cash loved to go hiking. He would wear his backpack and carry everything he/we needed.
We stayed busy today. We didn’t want to go home after he died. It’s going to be weird without him here. We eventually came home, and it’s so quiet here. It doesn’t seem right, but we will have to get used to it, at least for now.
I never knew how much I rely on my dog until he got sick. My husband always tells me that the dog helps me out and is a necessity for me. I know, just as my husband says, that Cash helps me realize when noises are real. For example, he will normally get up, bark, and run to the door when he hears someone coming. However, this past week that he has been sick, he doesn’t even pick up his head. I was doing dishes today, and I had to stop three times, cautiously run to the window/door to see if anyone was coming, and carefully return to the dishes. Cash has been my protector and my guardian for the past 11 years. I always figured that no one would mess with me if I had an 88 pound pit mix standing in front of me, and it was true. No I’m looking out for myself and for my dog. He took care of me for his whole life; now it’s my turn to take care of him (I’ll just have to worry about myself later).
I found out yesterday that my dog, Cash, has multiple cancerous masses in his spleen. There are a few options, but none of them are good. Chemo is an option, but it’s not one that we want to do. It causes too many side effects and we don’t know how effective it would be. We could also remove his spleen. However, that is extremely dangerous; he may not make it through the surgery and even if he does, it would only give him about 6 more months. Plus, the cancer could spread because it’s in his blood, so the surgery may not be that effective. We’ve decided to play it day by day. We just want him to be comfortable and happy.
I had to take my dog, Cash, to the emergency vet earlier today. Cash was having problems walking, his temperature was 2 degrees low, his gums were pale, his abdomen was enlarged, and he refused to eat dog food or treats (even when they were brought to him). I waited, for what felt like hours (but it was really only 45 minutes), and the vet came into the room to tell me about the results of the tests. It turns out that his blood work shows him as anemic, with some type of big infection (his WBC is twice what it should be), a tumor near his abdomen, and there is also some lose fluid in the abdomen.
I’m so worried about him. He’s 11 years old, I’m not sure if he can make it through this. I’m sleeping out in the living room with him this evening. I’m worried that this will be his last night tonight. Tomorrow, I will be bringing him and all of the tests/paperwork back to my regular vet. I feel more comfortable seeing how it goes with my regular vet (who knows Cash very well). I’m hoping for some better news, but I’m not counting on it. I’m going to stick by his side so he’s not alone. It’s bad enough that he’s in pain, I don’t want him to be alone either. The employees at vet that I went to, were extremely helpful, polite, and nice.
Today has been a productive and frustrating day. I worked on my taxes by starting to figure out some of my deductions such as medical expenses (which is a lot), I did all of the laundry including the bed sheets, I went grocery shopping, and I took and shower and washed my hair (which has been difficult during this depression).
While I was at the grocery store, the dog ripped out and ate one of his stitches. I was only gone for 40 minutes, and he had his e-collar on. I have no clue how he reached his back leg. The incision had only one stitch, it was a small incision. I cleaned it with hydrogen peroxide and wrapped it in gauze and vet wrap. I’ll call the vet tomorrow and see what they want me to do. I’m so frustrated. I’ve taken Cash to the vet more times in the past week than I have in the past couple of years.
Cash is doing better now. We brought him to the vet yesterday and had one of the techs show us how to properly bandage him. It really made a huge difference. I’ve been pretty stressed out over everything that has been happening with Cash. I’ve had him since he was 6 months old and now he’s 11 years old. I worry a lot. But I can tell that he’s finally feeling a little better because he picked up and chewed on his bone/toy for a bit. This is the first time he’s done that since his surgery last Thursday.
I got a lot of stuff done today including a therapy appointment, blood work, and grocery shopping. My husband stayed home with the dog while I was out. I don’t want to leave the dog alone, just in case he starts bleeding again. We went to play cards at my mother-in-law’s house yesterday and we brought Cash with us because we didn’t want to leave him at home by himself. I’m really glad we brought him because he bled through his bandages twice in just a few hours. Things are finally starting to look up.