Friday, August 22, 2008

Little Birdy

So it appears that we have a house guest, but Lisa and I are scared for the little guy/gal.

All summer long this little brown bird comes and hides either in the corner of our porch ceiling rafter or in one of our hanging plants.

Anyone have any clues? What will he/she do for winter?

Loud Silence

On the morning of a new day I certainly feel a better sense of relief and a greater release of my sadness for having to put Terra to sleep yesterday.

While it's only been 24hrs since we brought Terra to the VRCC; (Who I must say have been nothing short of fabulous to work with in terms of options and support) Perhaps the most difficult part of not having Terra around is the Loud Silence that is now filling the house.

Terra was always on the move, always needing to scratch, drinking water, clip clopping with her nails across the wood floors, sneezing, nudging you, or letting out a little bark to let you know she wanted up on the couch, bed, or needed go outside.

The irony is that these very things that filled the house with all things Terra now speak volumes to us that we've always done our best to give her a great life and keep her comfortable, yet despite our best efforts the Silence left in her wake sums up all that led up to our decision to do what was best for her.

On a side note, Sidney seems to be acting a tad out of sorts by wandering every once in a while with her nose in the air and looking around the house and yard. We'll be watching her closely as my brother's dogs recently lost about 10lbs each after they lost one of their own and after 8months, one has returned to it's original weight while the other still remains down by 10lbs.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I was once told...

... that there are only two types of dogs, "those who will bite and those who have bitten."

I guess this person never met my Pitbull Terra.

Today around 5:30 she was put down due to tumor on the spleen at the age of 12yr, 3months.

...And to until her last moments, she never laid a tooth on a single sole.

She was so kind, so trusting of me and anyone that I trusted. Terra lived every breath with an "Give everything 110%" attitude.

My regret is that I wasn't able to be there when it was time, but Lisa was so at least there was family with her.

We will miss her, I will miss her.

She was more than our pet, she was our kid, child, family!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Well, since my last post this morning I'm able to be a little less "emotional" and more level headed when weighing my options for how to take the best possible care of Terra.

More than money or anything else, my decisions need to be based on Quality of Life. In some cases, being a dog has many more perks than not because when you are down and ill, it's legal to actually put you to sleep instead of keeping you alive and suffering.

So my dilemma starts with actually finding out just what is wrong with Terra. The vet thinks she has a tumor on the spleen which for Terra at age 12yr could cause a problem simply due to age alone as a dog of her age simply might not be able to wake from the surgery.

So here's the low-down. Terra took to being weak and weary this past Friday. Since then she has snapped back and gone back to sick, but nothing quiet as sickly as Friday or as normal as usual.

So today we got an X-ray which clearly shows something in the abdomen, but actual size is still to be determined.

My options are:
~ more X-rays of the chest to see if there is more to be found still farther up in the body at about $170.00, but will still deliver little info to size and complexity.

~ A sonogram which will give more details of the mass(es) of size and location, but will cost $250-500

~ Exploratory surgery which will be the best to see what is going on, but will obviously be the most invasive & costly starting around $500.00.

With the surgery, if something is wrong they can do one of 3 things immediately, close her up, remove the tumor(s), or if it's really bad simply not wake her.

Anything less than starting with surgery will end up with surgery, putting her down based on a hunch, or simply letting her live out her natural life.

The problem in lies there, if the vet is correct and she does have a mass on the spleen, it seems that there is a 50/50 chance of recovery, a 50/50 chance of the mass being cancer, and a additional life span of 0- 15mo with the mean being 3-4mo. in which most dogs end up dying from another cancer since the spleen is no longer in place to help filter out all nasties.

If I let her just be, she will bleed to death, slowly!

And if I pick the time for her to go, well I simply have to live wondering if I made the correct decision.

Unfortunately unlike other illnesses, there doesn't seem to be a a black and white time for debate or threshold that maybe once she passes, it's best to let her just go.

My decisions will either find me acting on natures behalf prematurely or once the process of suffering begins.

So how do you put a happy dog down?

Life for Life

So what do you do when it's all about the money? I mean lack there of.
I'm faced w/a situation where I'm being forced to choose between trying to save life or live mine and money is the common denominator.

How can I sleep with thoughts of, "I could have done more."

Today confirmed my fears that Terra has tumors, but the money that needs to be spent simply isn't there unless I give up a semesters worth of schooling and even then the money is only thanks to Mr. Visa.