I Let Him Run

It’s been a while since I’ve posted. I’m sorry. I have literally been at a loss for words…which honestly I can’t recall ever happening to me before. I have always been able to write, but for some reason have recently lost the desire. Current events? I’m sure I could attribute most of it to depression and the excruciating pain I’m now dealing with again since my TMJ Disorder has decided to flair up. In case you’re unfamiliar let me just tell you the symptoms closely resemble what I can only suspect would be akin to a screwdriver being thrust in your temple after someone has slugged you in the jaw. Yep, it’s that kind of pain. Nevertheless, I did read the kind comments left to me after my last post, and although I never replied back would like to thank you all for them now. They meant a great deal to me. Because of this I felt I owed all of you a post to update you on current events.

With a heavy heart I must tell you that our beautiful boy, Sully, has canine cancer. His most recent lab results came back yesterday and confirmed the worst. To say I’m torn-up over the news would be a understatement. I knew something was terribly wrong, but I never suspected that. At this point we were told the next step is to get xrays to locate where it is, which we will be doing this coming Friday. From there I don’t know, although I will tell you I don’t feel good about the outcome. This came about quickly, and hit hard. In just a few weeks he went from appearing healthy but having a few accidents on the floor, to now having no appetite, dropping significant weight, having difficulty moving around and breathing, not being able to get comfortable wherever he’s laying, and constantly groans in pain. I tell you this not to shock you, but rather to encourage you to make sure your pets get their annual checkups, pay attention to any signs of sores not healing, lumps they may have; any type of change in them. We have always been very diligent about keeping his shots up to date and tending to any medical needs he may have had, but I failed to pay attention to something as simple as a small sore on his head that wasn’t healing I thought was nothing more than a bug bite. We were treating it topically for several weeks before we had it looked at when he went in to the vet to get checked for the kidney infection. Something that minute can be a warning sign, so pay attention.

My husband and I made the decision last night that if there is anything that can be surgically removed to remedy this, that is a route we’re willing to take. If it is a matter of chemotherapy that is one we’re not. My husband lost his mother to breast cancer many years ago. I lost both my parents to lung cancer. All fought it with everything they had, and squandered the time they had left so ill they couldn’t enjoy it. This is not something we wish for our son. We’ve decided that the only decision we’re comfortable with if it comes to that, is to simply keep him medicated and as comfortable as possible till we feel the quality of his life is gone. He has had a good life, albeit it only four years. He’s always had a warm fire to lie in front of, a full belly, I’ve been fortunate to be able to stay at home with him and he’s never been alone, and he has had more love than many will ever see. He has been very fortunate. So have we. He is the best dog that either of us have ever had. He deserves better than the hand he’s been dealt.

I let him run last night. Something we don’t let him do for fear of him straying too far. Last night I opened the door and watched him run slowly, unsteadily out into the tall, damp grass. I watched him enjoy himself completely and experience freedom. Later my husband helped him onto our bed and he slept between us. These things…little things…I do not just for him, but also for myself. I’m making memories. He is my child and I don’t want to waste one moment. If you haven’t hugged your four-legged child today you might want to do so. Show them a little of the loyalty and devotion they’ve always shown you.

Say a prayer for my boy.

Sully (Spring of 2011)