Who knew – chemo is fun!

Well, Abby had her first chemo session today and she loved it. (She’s so nutty.) It was the most excited I’ve seen her in about a month. She was bouncing all over the place and kissing everyone and hopping around. Hopefully she’ll be OK with the nausea the next couple of days. They gave me some medicine to bring home and give her if necessary.

Below is a picture of her looking oh-so-happy to be at her appointment. (She is checking out the dog and cat art hanging on the wall.)

My Happy Girl
They gave her the 100% dose for the first go-round, since Abby looked so healthy and peppy. (I guess in some cases they ease into things…) The oncologist also said if Abby tolerates the treatment well, we might go to an every 2 weeks schedule instead of every 3. We’ll see.
Next up is having her blood checked next week to see how her white cell count is doing. If it’s really low, she might have to stick close to home for a few days, but other than that they gave her the OK for all her old activities: Walking! Dog Park! Dog Beach! HIKING even! The oncologist said Abby just needs to build her stamina back up. So, this afternoon, we’ll try a little hop around the neighborhood. Our first one! (Can’t wait to see if any neighbors notice/ask.)

Staples: Gone! Now if we could lose the cone…

Abby got her staples out yesterday, 10 days post surgery. She’s doing really great. Unfortunately she still has to wear her e-collar, since otherwise she chews on the oh-so-delicious scabs. (mmmmm. scabs.)

In fairness to dogs, I guess if I had no fingers, I’d chew any scabs I had as well. After all, who can say they never picked at a scab? Not me!

Anyway, enough about scabs. She was so happy to go back to the vet. They just love her there and she loves them. The whole staff gets very excited when she comes in. (My hubby jokes it’s because she is their new cash cow! But, really… they do love her.)  And I’m so glad she’s not afraid to go back there! Hopefully that will continue. Managed to get her to not chew on herself long enough to get a pic to show how well she’s doing:

Healing Up Nicely!

Tomorrow we start chemo – as long as the oncologist is done with jury duty! Ugh. Hopefully they won’t have to reschedule us. I’m anxious to get in there and get started!

I’ll post again following the chemo. Really hoping she doesn’t react too badly to it! Wish us luck!

Also, I’ve posted a wee video of her getting around on three legs at my other blog, here.

Wolf Instincts

Yesterday, Abby had her follow up appointment at the vet to have her drain removed. She’s such a sweetheart. I thought she might be afraid to head back in there, but no, as soon as we pulled into the vet’s parking lot she was ready to jump out of the car. With the help of my little handmade sling, I got her out of the car, and then had to trot alongside as she hopped happily to the front door. She went in, all smiles and wagging tail. Everyone there was SO happy to see her. And she was so happy to see them. She’s such a love. They all thought she was doing great!

While I was there, I asked about her aloofness (which continues, as shown in the photo below of her “hiding” in the jasmine again this morning). They said it’s normal after surgery and is most likely due to some continuing discomfort. As some of my friends and family theorized, it is believed to go back to their wolfy instincts, where, in the wild, a hurt animal will go off on its own in an attempt to hide its weakness. Then last night I downloaded the great Tripawd e-book (wish I’d had it from the very beginning) and saw the same advice/explanation. So, while the Tramadol may be making her act a little weird (it definitely makes her tummy upset), I think it’s better to put up with the side effects than have her be in pain, so I’m erring on the side of giving her a bit more pain meds for now, rather than too little. The vet said there is not really a fear of giving her too much, as there could be with some other drugs. The guidelines they gave me (1/2 to 2 pills every 6 to 8 hours) really give a range so I’ve been tweaking how much to give her and have kinda come up with something that seems to be working. She only spent a little while by herself this morning, and then came back inside. In fact, she is laying here by me while I type this. Things are moving along – and I keep having to remind myself we are only at day 6, post-op, so she’s doing really great. I’m officially going to try to stop worrying! At least for now. 🙂

"Wish this e-collar thing came in 'camouflage'!"

“I want to be alone”

I posted a question the other day on the Recovery forum about Abby’s aloofness since her surgery. (Thanks, by the way, to everyone who offered suggestions and support.) I’m pretty convinced it’s a side effect of feeling funky on the Tramadol, but plan to talk to the vet about it when we go see him today to have her drain taken out (hoorah! That thing is just icky. I realize it’s there for a good reason – but it’s still icky and it bugs her.)

Thought I’d post some pics of Abby channeling Greta Garbo in “Grand Hotel”.

Where's Abby?
There she is! Under the fern.
"Perhaps a swim, since I have my life preserver handy..."

Hello fellow Tripawd pawrents!

Hello all. Well, I’m sure the same with all of you, this isn’t really a site I would have joined if things hadn’t conspired against us… Just found out our 15-month-old puppy, Abby, has osteosarcoma last Monday. Here we are, only a week later, and she has already had her right front leg amputated. I’d started a blog about it on blogspot – Pooch Smooches – for my friends and family to keep up with what’s happening before finding the TriPawds site. I figured I’d do some posting on here as well, since there’s an instant community of folks in the same situation.

Things have moved so quickly, but I’ve already

Abby Louise
Happy, pre-cancer, at the beach

posted about all that on my other blog. For now I just wanted to say hi and introduce Abby as a new member of the tripawd team. (I’ve also got a lot of pictures of her on the other one.)

Since she is young and strong, and also since her chest xray and lymph node lab work were clear, we are hopeful that we’ve done the right thing.

As I’ve seen some others say on their blogs – you can second guess yourself a lot, but so far so good. She is already doing so much better than I imagined. AND she had her first post-op poop today, so that was terribly exciting. I know you can all relate.

Hopefully we’ll be posting about hitting many happy milestones on here. Next stop – get the ‘drain’ taken out. Then, on to chemo… We are not looking back, but are hopping happily forward.  Jackie, Abby’s mom