Know what’s fun?
Being woken up by a dog that sounds like she’s about to puke and then screams as she jumps off the bed. Lots of fun, let me tell you; I didn’t go back to sleep.
I ushered the old lady out back (She kept her tail tucked the whole time.) and once I was sure she wasn’t going to vomit, I let her back in.
I spooned out her yogurt and Metacam–which she lapped right up. I stumbled back off to bed.
I knew for sure something was seriously wrong when Sophie didn’t follow me into the bedroom to take her rightful place as Blanket Anchor. She wouldn’t look at me and as I tried to check her gums and feel her stomach, I considered the very real possibility of her taking off a couple of my fingers.
By the time I had to take Cara to school, Sophie had perked up and had some of her personality back. Tucker and I agreed I would watch Sophie and if she didn’t get any better, I would take her in.
Tucker left and Sophie headed to the garage–tail still tucked–just like every morning to help take Cara to school. Unfortunately, when she went to jump in my SUV, she made it half way, fell back out and started screaming. Poor Cara had been the one to open my door–which she does every day–and she lost it with hysterical crying.
I had to call Tucker back home in a panic since I wasn’t sure I could get Sophie in the back of the SUV by myself without hurting her more. By that point she had started rolling and panting. Not a fun thing to watch.
To Sophie’s vet’s credit, even though she didn’t have an appointment, they came out and got her out of the back of my SUV for me and got her right in.
Now, several hundred dollars lighter and with three prescriptions and two supplements, Sophie is sleeping on the bed…which I put her on. Her doc gave me some Tramadol for any breakthrough pain and it seems to have conked her out.
The bone I gave her yesterday caused a lot of gas and discomfort. The double-edged sword of all of this is we know for sure she’s developing arthritis in her back (Two of her vertebrae are compressed with spurs.), she has hip pain–so there’s a very good chance she has developed arthritis in that joint as well, her kidneys are pissed off, she has white cells in her urine, her urine isn’t as concentrated as it should be (Her kidneys aren’t efficiently performing their jobs.) and we have to go back in a week to get another blood draw.
It’s a double-edged sword since if she hadn’t been so miserable, we probably wouldn’t have found out about the kidneys until it was potentially too late. I was expecting some compromisation of her kidney function due to the Metacam. Sophie has been on the stinky medicine for a while and her creatine is at 1.8 right now which is the highest for “normal” with her kidneys. Hopefully getting her to drink more will help bring that down. The draw next week and then a month later will set a baseline for what’s doing and we’ll be able to figure out if decreasing her Metacam a bit and adding the supplements is doing any good.
Unfortunately, we’re about to reach the point where she’s on Tramadol and will stay on it until she dies or we have to put her down. Sophie’s kidneys will participate in the excretion of the Tramadol and will also bring her liver to the party. Cause we can fuck up just one set of organs, huh? Nope. We have to be overachievers.
All is not lost!
Yeah, all of that sounds bad and it is bad but she’s still alive and if the pain can be managed while maintaining decent liver and kidney function, she should have a pretty good quality of life.
I know Tucker and I are coming very close to having “the discussion” and putting a dollar amount on just how far we’re willing to go to keep her alive. She just turned ten. She has developed arthritis in multiple joints. We’ve also had her for her entire ten years of life and it’s not going to be an enjoyable conversation. Very cold and calculating but it’s necessary.
I listened to this edition of Marketplace a couple of weeks ago and it’s stuck with me since I knew this day was coming.