Saturday, October 3, 2009

Update on Ranger

Well, the hits just keep coming. I told you all that I was taking Ranger back to the vet for a checkup to make sure that his abscess was doing better. I noticed that the lump was still there and was actually bigger. The vet agreed and came back with some bad news. This is no abscess. Apparently it caused the abscess, but there is another issue. Cancer. She told me as much as soon as she saw that the lump was growing. There are usually 2 causes for a lump like that, an abscess and a tumor. She was pretty sure even before I paid another $300 for a biopsy and all that on top of the $500 I gave them for the dental work. After the biopsy, she is 99% sure that it is cancer and unfortunately it is an aggressive form and has already gotten into the bone. She said that we could take him to Colorado State University Vet school and try to have it removed, but the chances that he will recover are extremely slim. He's an old dog and the tumor has more than doubled in size in 10 days, so it would be very difficult for them to remove it all and not have it come back. She gave him 2 weeks to live at the current growth rate. She also said that it will be very painful for him and messy for us. He's going to start sneezing blood again and eventually it just won't stop and he will bleed out. Nice. The right thing to do is have him put down at the first signs of discomfort. We still haven't told the kids. Vince thinks that it would be best to take him in and tell them that he is sick and then when he doesn't come home, tell them that he was really sick and died. I don't know if that's the right way. I think Audrey especially will not do well with not having said goodbye. She's very sensitive about it. I flushed one of our fish one time and she was upset for days, asking questions about why he died and why didn't I let her say goodbye first. A fish! So, I can imagine that this dog, who greeted her when she was brought home from the hospital, will cause much more upset. Especially if we don't let her have her moment. I bawled at the vet's office when I went to pick him up after his biopsy. I know I complain about my dogs and sometimes wish that I didn't have to hassle with them anymore, but I surely did not want this to happen and it will be really hard to let him go. We brought him home when he was just a tiny thing and he's been a part of our family since before we had kids. 9 years he's been with us. I'm sure there will be many more tears. I hate that this is happening. And he's usually our quietest one. Leaves me with the 2 crazy dogs. Fabulous! I'm sure they will wonder what happened too. Scout and Ranger have grown up together. Scout was about 2 years old, maybe not even that old when we brought Ranger home so that he could have a brother. I hope that Scout will let Buddy fill the hole that Ranger will leave. Right now Buddy is kinda the outsider. Maybe this will bring them closer together. I'm glad that we will still have those 2 to help us get through this. Bye, sweet fat dog. We will miss you so much. Have fun chasing rabbits and squirrels in Heaven.

1 comment:

I am a silly cow. :p said...

Oh hon...sorry that all this stuff is happening! I hope that you find the best way to tell the kids, and maybe try to explain that him being in pain is much worse?

I haven't had any pet issues like that in our family. Willard will be getting a fish soon though...