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Milhouse's 3-legged adventures!

Chemo round 1

July 22nd, 2017 · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

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 Getting comfy after chemo. 

This is my brother Charlie. He likes to stare at me to make sure I’m ok and cleans my ears a lot.

 

 

 

 

I am SO proud of my boy! We are 3 days post our first chemo treatment, and he is just acting like his usual self!

I was SO terrified to even do chemo. I had already talked myself out of it before we went to see the oncologist. He was seriously the best. Dr. Vancil at NVS spent at least 45 minutes explaining osteosarcoma, chemo, and everything in between to us. I’ve had doctors that have operated on me before that spent less time with me than he did! He wanted to make sure we talked until I had zero questions. He understood my hesitation about Mo’s quality of life. I told him I’d rather have 4 awesome months than 12 crappy ones. He assured me that if at any point in treatment if I felt like Milhouse was suffering that we could call it quits. So I’m playing it by ear, and so far, so good!

Probably the best info in this visit was regarding his leg break. Dr. Vancil explained that usually dogs with osteosarcoma have pain and begin to limp or favor their hurt leg. Then comes the cancer diagnosis, and then pup parents have to make the agonizing decision regarding amputation. The way everything went with Mo, to my knowledge he wasn’t having leg pain until the break. The break helped us catch the cancer early on, and really the amputation choice was made for us as there was no way to reattach the leg. So we’ve kind of done this whole thing backwards, but I’m grateful.

We go have his white blood cell count checked next week, and if all is going well, we will continue on to treatment 2/5 in a couple of weeks.

 

Thanks for all who who have shown care and concern through this whole ordeal! We are figuring out our new normal 🙂

Love,

Milhouse & his mom


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Brother reunion and the dreaded C word.

July 17th, 2017 · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

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Hi all,

The good news: Milhouse’s recovery from his amputation is going really well. He even jumped on the couch this past week, which was a total shock to me! He also started playing a little- brought me a tennis ball a few times, and de-fluffed a stuffed puppy.

We are now 4 weeks out from surgery, and brother Charlie got to come home from Grandma’s house! We had a reunion celebration with some cheese and peanut butter frosty paws! Charlie came in and sniffed Milhouse’s leg nub. Milhouse stood very still and let him take as much time as he needed to figure it out. Charlie gave it a lick and then got to business cleaning Milhouse’s ears. He does this daily, and he takes his job very seriously 🙂 I’m so glad to have both pups back under my roof!

The bad news: Despite uncertainty last week and the possibility that Milhouse’s leg tumor wasn’t cancerous, it was confirmed on Friday that he does in fact have osteosarcoma. The vet called literally 5 minutes after I had hung up the phone with a friend who informed me that a former co-worker, friend, and all-around amazing lady had passed that morning. Talk about a 1-2 punch.

Initially I had assumed that I wouldn’t put Milhouse through chemo. He’s almost 13 and I want him to be comfy and happy this last little bit. I thought through friends and family members who were miserable through chemo, and just couldn’t see putting my buddy through that. I told the vet this, and he strongly encouraged me to make an oncology appointment anyway. He said that dogs tolerate chemo much differently than people do and generally feel fine through the treatments. He said if I didn’t do chemo, we could have as little as 4 months left due to the aggressive nature of osteosarcoma. 4 months felt like a punch in the stomach. That’s before the end of this year. I can’t do it.

So we have an appointment Wednesday with a veterinary oncologist. I’m going to at least listen to all of the options and pray that I can make the best choices to keep my buddy comfortable and happy.

Off to snuggle my boy. I have nine more days until I return to work, and want to soak up all the snuggles and play time that I can!

 

 

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Two weeks down and maybe not cancer?!?

July 5th, 2017 · 7 Comments · Uncategorized

Hi guys!

From Milhouse: Today we went to NVS to get my staples out! I’m a happy boy! Doctor says I’m looking good and that in 2 more weeks I can run AND be reunited with my bro! I’m not necessarily super excited about him coming home because honestly Charlie is an attention hog. I’ve enjoyed being the center of attention, getting the best bed, and ALL of the treats and toys. I do miss the daily ear cleaning Charlie gives me though. I’ve been really stressed from all of the fireworks and thunderstorms we’ve been getting this week. I’m ready for a nap!

From his mom: I really expected us to have the biopsy results back today. Our doctor gave me some pretty surprising news. We aren’t out of the woods yet, but the preliminary results of the biopsy shows that Milhouse’s bone sample showed “abnormal cells” that may not be cancer. The doctor said he would be “shocked” if it wasn’t cancer. I would love for him to be shocked!! I had gotten myself ready for the c-word and to talk oncology options today. I’m trying not to super get my hopes up that it’s not cancer, but I am praying fervently that it might not be! Thank you Lord for a glimmer of hope!

That’s all for today. Thanks for all who have prayed for Milhouse and me. I’m hopeful with his staples out that I may be able to start going out for an hour or two at a time and be social again 🙂

Kisses!

Mo and his mom

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It’s Been One Week

June 28th, 2017 · 5 Comments · Uncategorized

As BNL once said, It’s Been One Week. 1 week ago yesterday I was in FL on the phone with a vet in Tennessee begging him to at least try to fix Milhouse’s leg. Last Monday night, I got a call from my mom that Milhouse was playing with Charlie (his brother and BFF) and somehow fell trying to get on or off of my bed. She and my boyfriend (who have both been absolutely AMAZING through this whole thing, they’re my heroes!) took him to the doggie ER and they confirmed a break of the back femur just below the hip. He spent the night at the ER and the next day went to an orthopedic vet.

Tuesday morning, the vet called me and recommended amputation. That was not what I wanted to hear. I wanted my pup to get his leg fixed and go back to running and jumping and playing with his brother. He told me that it was up to me, but he was pretty sure there was a tumor in the bone. Wait. A tumor? What? How could he be certain by just guessing? My options were to go ahead with the repair (which could fail if there really was a tumor present, then they would have to go back in and do an amputation anyway) or choose amputation. I did NOT want to put my pup through two surgeries, but I also really didn’t want to opt for amputation if there was any chance that there wasn’t a tumor. I was so stressed out to try to make that decision. A good friend who works in the vet field and I came to the conclusion that it was ok to ask him to try the repair, but if he got in there and saw evidence that the repair may not be successful, only then to take the leg. We went with that plan. The vet called after surgery and told me that he found visible evidence of a tumor in the bone when he got in and had to amputate. There was no way it could be repaired. It’s weird, but once he told me that, all of my anxiety went away. I was so afraid to make the wrong decision, and it was relieving to me that that there was really only one decision so I couldn’t have messed it up.

I flew home early from vacation (I was so sad to leave- My dad and stepmom planned an awesome vacay, and I really hated to cut it short!!) on Wednesday and was greeted for the first time by my 3 legged pup. I really didn’t know what to expect. His scar looked awful, and he was so drugged up. But he was still my boy. He jumped up on his own for the first time and hopped over to me. I’ve grown quite fond of that little hop over the last week. Almost all of my sadness went away because I realized that I’ve still got my boy. He’s been my baby for almost 13 years and I’m gonna love the hell out of him for however long we have together. I know as lab results and biopsies come back that there may be talk of the dreaded C word, but for right now, I’m gonna love my Mo as hard as I can.

We’ve had some amazing friends come by and visit, bring food, drinks, and be all around awesome and helpful. I can’t leave the house at least for another week or two unless someone else is watching him. Milhouse is getting stronger every day and has had a couple of spills, but for the most part is figuring this walking thing out. His favorite place is the backyard, it’s where he has his best footing. He can now hop the entire perimeter and has even barked at other dogs on walks through the fence to let them know to get off his turf! He is sleeping a lot, but I see little bursts of his personality here and there. I can’t wait for staples to be out (July 5th) and pain meds to be over! Thanks to everyone who has asked about him, prayed for him, or sent him goodies! We love our support system!

Love, Mo and his mama

My backyard is my favorite.

My mom has too much free time. Someone help me!

 

I’m still cute even when I’m drugged 🙂

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Hello Tripawds!

June 24th, 2017 · No Comments · Uncategorized

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