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Update on p.3: Ginger's last appointment is over.

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  • #21
    Lauruffian, something like prednisone will shrink the tumors and buy you some time. It won't be curative, though.

    Several mast cell tumors all at once certainly sounds like systemic, metastatic cancer to me, which has a pretty grim outcome, even with surgery to remove the tumors you can see, and the primary tumor, if you can find it. Chemo may give you more time--likely more than just a steroid--but it is also unlikely that it will be curative.

    When I went through this with my Ophelia kitty, we treated with prednisone and monitored her carefully, putting her down when it appeared her internal tumors were causing a partial bowel obstruction.

    I am so sorry you all are so sick and having to face this with Miss Ginger.

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    • #22
      I am truly sorry to hear this. It seems so unfair that a family that loves and values their animals so much would have so many health issues with them in such a short time period. I know you will do the right thing, whatever that turns out to be.
      The Evil Chem Prof

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      • #23
        Originally posted by Calvincrowe View Post
        Oh, I am so sorry! Adopting and caring for older pets is so rewarding, and yet, so brief. I sometimes feel like our house is Calvincrowe's Home for Aged and Wayward Souls.
        Lol, yeah, I sometimes feel like I'm running the Halfway House for the Elderly, Unwanted, and Just Plain Nuts. This is why I swear, next time, purebred, puppy, even if I'm sitting on a waiting list for a high-end breeder, for once I'm getting a dog who isn't a charity case of some kind or another. (And of course I've finally settled on a breed who'd fit what I want and would be size-compatible with the Corgi, who's touchy about these things, and of course it's the kind that rarely/never shows up in rescues anyway.)

        Lauruffian, sorry to hear one problem's sort of resolved only for this to crop up, but at least Ginger finally found the right people, even if it took until the last minute. Sounds like your house was doggy heaven compared to her old owner. And maybe the second opinion will say it's not as bad as it seems!
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        • #24
          I'm sorry about your dog, she looks like such a nice dog. Hopefully they can keep her comfortable for a little while. I've had runs like this too, it just happens when you have multiple animals, esp. mixing ages, species, etc.
          Every mighty oak was once a nut that stood its ground.

          Proud Closet Canterer! Member Riders with Fibromyalgia clique.

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          • Original Poster

            #25
            We finally, painfully came to the conclusion I knew we'd reach with her initial diagnosis: we will be putting her down. I know I said that initially, but it's official now.

            We felt the surgery didn't make sense l things (and man, there is a lot factoring into that "all") considered, but that had us briefly stuck at not wanting to do the surgery but not wanting to put her down. The problem is, those really are our only two options, as confirmed by two vets at two independent clinics. Hubby and I have been talking about it on and off for a week, but finally last night, we reluctantly decided it was best to euthanize her before she really starts to suffer. Both vets felt the surgery, if we were to choose it, should happen ASAP--and I can see why. The ugliest tumor is only getting uglier, and I've already found a fourth where two weeks ago there were only three.

            We finally sucked up the courage to tell our eldest, and I am very proud of him. After talking with him about Ginger's cancer and providing a basic outline of the complications of the situation, he understands it is time to say goodbye. Keeping her alive because we don't want to say goodbye means we are making her suffer because *we* don't want to suffer. (This is the horrible lesson our Arabian taught me.) We won't be saying goodbye today, but within a week or so as the tumor is growing and changing literally every day.

            I also told eldest the story of the day we brought her home (pictured here), and how she'd literally been on the table to be put down when the vet refused. You can see her shaved paw in this photo from where they'd prepped her. She'd been alone, locked in a crate in the garage at night, and banished from the home. I explained we gave her the gift not just of a longer life, but a better one, and he understood. He was sad, but remarkably mature and open about his feelings and questions about her situation.

            Then he asked if we could get a new dog. Heh.

            (Our answer was "When the time is right, and the animal is right, we will get another cat or dog. It may be a week after we say goodbye to her, or it may be six months, but that time will come." He was happy with that.)

            Meanwhile, poor girl initially refused to eat the rawhide chips I gave her this morning--which is a HUGE red flag as they are The! Best! Evarrrr! to her. She did eventually go back for them about an hour or so after they were given. This (and similar recent behaviors) makes me worry it's spread more than we see.

            She's on Benadryl for now and I'm watching her carefully in case we need to act even sooner.
            SA Ferrana Moniet 1988-2011
            CP Trilogy 2002-2015
            My bloggity blog: Hobby Horse: Adventures of the Perpetual Newbie

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            • Original Poster

              #26
              Ginger's last appointment is Friday at 5:30pm. It made me sick to make that call, again. I was fine until I was put on hold while she checked the schedule, and started weeping at my desk. I then called SmartPak to cancel her monthly Cosequin supplements, also making me choke up. Ugh...insult to injury. I do hope I can turn again and give what I have--a good months' worth--to a local rescue. Maybe it can go home with another adoptee with hip dysplasia...a sort of housewarming gift for them.

              Hubby will bravely bring Ginger in on Friday while I stay home with the boys. Since we just said goodbye to our beloved cat in September, the 3yro remembers taking him in, and said, "Inigo here! Where Inigo?" as soon as we walked in last week when Ginger had her second opinion appointment. GAH. We don't need him NOW saying, "Ginger here! Where Ginger?" Eldest is still a bit too young IMO to be in the room with Ginger for the injection, so I'll be home trying to distract the boys while hubby sees her to the end.

              I'm trying to make this the Best Week Ever for her. It started with a super giant happy dog bone on Sunday, which she was so ecstatic about she was beside herself. Here she is trying to gnaw it down. Heh.

              Tonight I broke a rule I am normally resolute about never breaking: I fed her scraps from the dinner table. She happily sat next to me, enjoying treats of chicken breast I handed her (still making her sit and be respectful--which she always is). I then set my plate down and let her lick it clean. I was careful not to give her too much--I don't want to upset her tummy--though as hubby said, she would NOT care if I did. Heh.

              Good, sweet girl. Angel will make a terrific playmate for you, Inigo will be thrilled to boss you around once more, and Ferrana will show you all the best places to roll.

              SA Ferrana Moniet 1988-2011
              CP Trilogy 2002-2015
              My bloggity blog: Hobby Horse: Adventures of the Perpetual Newbie

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              • #27
                Hugs to all of you. And break all the rules you want this week...
                The Evil Chem Prof

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                • #28
                  Sending you hugs, and prayers for strength, and an easy passing for Ginger.

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                  • #29
                    Damn, I am so sorry. She's a gorgeous girl, and I love the picture of her with the giant bone. She's so well loved, and she knows it. That's a very lucky dog

                    Why is it that one of the best things we do for them hurts so very very much?

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                    • #30
                      The greatest gift one can ever give. Godspeed.
                      McDowell Racing Stables

                      Home Away From Home

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                      • #31
                        Big Fat Hugs from Massachusetts to all of you.
                        What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!

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                        • #32
                          big hugs from Montana, just so hard and what a sweet dog! I don't know why the universe didn't design it so our pets last as long as we do. Ginger sure lucked out in the loving family department! Good for your husband for being able to show up for her at the end and be with her at the appointment, and prayers for you all!

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                          • #33
                            Major, major hugs to you and your family.

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                            • #34
                              More hugs from Montana-I'm sorry for all of you!
                              “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey

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                              • #35
                                Hugs from Georgia. If she could she would thank you for making such a brave decision and ensuring that her last week with you was the best week ever. Nothing beats table scraps, rawhides, and lots of love from her favorite people.

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                                • #36
                                  HUGS from Fl. And I agree with the above poster who said, "break all the rules you want this week".

                                  You said it yourself in earlier posts, you gave Ginger the best gift EVAR a loving home with a family to call her own. She will eagerly be waiting for you at the rainbow bridge.
                                  www.facebook.com/doggonegoodgoodies
                                  http://doggonebakedgoods.com/

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                                  • #37
                                    So sorry! That time between making the final appointment and waiting for it to happen is just awful, as is the wrestling with the decision. I always find that afterwards is not as stressful and difficult as the time leading up to it and the anticipation. Once the appointment is over, you can find peace. Sleep softly, Ginger. You are fortunate to have had such a loving family.

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                                    • #38
                                      Thinking of you.
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                                      • #39
                                        I'm so very sorry. Bless you for being so caring and unselfish.

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                                        • #40
                                          I'm so, so sorry. Thank you for giving her this time.

                                          StG

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