|Really? I'm not having a baby?? I feel like it...|
So over the last week, my beloved springer Brandi developed a finicky appetite. Odd for a dog that is normally ravenous... but it's exactly the same symptom she had when we found a bladder infection in her back in May. Felt her tummy, it felt full, so it must be a little bloating. Wednesday we went to the vet for what I thought was a check for a bladder infection, more antibiotics and rest.
We took X-rays and found a huge mass in Brandi's abdomen. Yes... M-A-S-S and I saw the x-ray, it was very big. Because we can't tell from an x-ray just how it decided to grow in there our only option was a mass removal surgery. I knew going into surgery it was a life or death surgery. And I was only going to do right by Brandi... I would never put my baby through discomfort or unnecessary pain if she couldn't live a quality of life. Note: Back in May when she had the bladder infection, we did a full ultrasound specifically looking for any abnormalities or growths. There were NONE!
Yesterday was surgery... I'll spare you all the emotional moments as there were many. Suffice it to say, the surgery took 2 hours. They removed a tumor that weighed 7.3 lbs. (She was only 40 lbs including the tumor going into surgery.) The tumor had grown around one of her kidneys and adhered to her spleen, so she had them removed. The following 24 hours would be critical. We needed to keep her blood pressure down so she doesn't throw a blood clot.... more waiting, praying all the prayers I could pray... and wait.
|You have GOT to be kidding me...|
My phone rang at 9:05 last night... it was the vet. I was expecting an evening update, but wasn't prepared for what happened next.
"How's Brandi? Is she doing okay?"
"Um, Dawn, you live close to the clinic right?"
"Yes" a pit building in my stomach
"Well I think you should come down here and get her."
"Okay.... is she okay?"
"Yes, she's recovering fine. But she's a true springer and getting very antsy. She's actually standing on her own and walking. She's not letting the morphine sedate her so I'm concerned her anxiety will raise her blood pressure. I think if she was in a familiar, quiet environment she'd sleep much better."
"Okay... I'll be right there."
Fast forward, I wake up this morning at 5:45 to a loving, happy Springer cuddling me in bed with beautiful, bright eyes. She's amazingly strong. She's amazingly mine... my baby girl.
|Sorry it's fuzzy, cell phone in a dark bedroom|
What happened was a miracle... even talking with the vet today at a follow up check up... the fact he was able to get the solid, dense mass out of such a small frame without damaging vital organs was a miracle. To me, the fact he kept going was a miracle. Brandi will be 13 in November, most vets would have seen the entire abdomen filled with tumor and not have gone on thinking she's just an old girl, she'll never recover. But Dr. Chris saw the twinkle in Brandi's eye and her spirited, feisty demeanor prior to surgery. She spent the morning at the vet clinic before her surgery keeping the front desk ladies company while they waited for her blood work results. She was lovin up on all of them! So he knew, she was a fighter... if he could just get that tumor out.
I physically saw the tumor when I picked her up last night... I'm still in awe. THAT was in THERE???? Really? (I took pictures but am not putting them here for my queasy stomached sister AMY and brother) If you're into ER dramas and want to see them, e-mail me.
Special THANK YOU to Dr. Chris Welch and his wife Dr. Kelly Roy at Geneva Lakes Animal Hospital who both helped Brandi. You BOTH treated Brandi as if she was one of your own. She's my baby and your unending determination to make sure she was in the best place possible is priceless to me. To have my baby girl home, happy and healing after what most people would never have attempted is so special. From the bottom of my heart... Thank You.
So for now... I'm going to be spending time being a Licking Referee, keeping Bella otherwise occupied so she's calm and being grateful for the many, many blessings I received this week.
Hugs & Love!