Sunday, January 20, 2008

My old Doggie Thorn is not well.

Some of you have read posts of mine in the past about the wonderful loyal and very handsome dog, Thorn. He's our youngest daughter's dog and has been since 1995. We've had him here since she had to move into a flat in Melbourne 3 years ago. He is so much a part of my life now.

Just before Christmas, I was out in the paddock with him throwing things for him to fetch and he was so happy, tail up, ears up and played till he flopped down exhausted...

Within a couple of days I noticed a change in him, he just seem to lose enthusiasm for everything... even his food, and kept looking at me long and sorrowful... I think he is in some pain which explains the long looks he's been giving me.

He's got a massive lump on his shoulder...was operated on in the past but returned. he nearly died the last surgery and to remove it you would have to take away the whole shoulder joint and muscle tissue...he wouldn't survive it.

He reacts really badly to anaesthetic, and takes ages to wake.
(when he was better)

The lump is not a tumor, but it has begun to restrict his breathing and his bark has gone from sounding like a doberman to only being half a bark and that not even loud. He coughs a lot but there doesn't seem to be fluid...its more like a restriction.

They grow old too quickly and I know by looking at him that I will be very fortunate to have him still with me by the end of the year.

We lost the old cat in February last year. It never rains but it pours. Don was not a cat lover but when old Archimedes died he was as upset as I was... they grow on you.

Anyway blood tests for Thorn tomorrow just to eliminate some things...hopefully. He seems to have a bowel problem also as well as the lungs. Its all happened too quickly.

This dog is really special. He treated Don so gently whereas with other men he would be really rough and rambunctious. I remember Don slipping Thorn a bit of food many times and instead of a doggie snap he would just lift it from the top f Don's hands. Don couldn't move his fingers so had to cup the bits inside the bent fingers...

in this photo Thorn is "hopeful" about the huge bunch of grapes... till he got one and realised he didn't like it. Don was not adverse to slipping him things he used to tewll me not to give him

But still will enjoy the old dog...he gets plenty of pats, and much company (me) and he looked after us all for so many years... my turn to return the favour.

If its just (just!) his lungs that can be managed...

Its funny but the lump he has started to grow about 6 months after he was chipped , when he was about 4 or 5. It is so close to where it is you have to wonder. Its too late now because the lump has grown into so much of the upper body... what is visible on the outside is only the part of it unfortunately. Now he's 13 he's best left in peace with what he has and knowing he's loved. I hope they do that for me when I am old and sore....


Sara said...

Nooooooo! They *DO* grow old too quickly, don't they? My dog has some "fatty lumps" as well. "It's not a tumor!" we all say in our Arnold voice, but they are mostly harmless. Hopefully whatever's bothering your doggy will pass as well. It's amazing what personalities they develop and to what lengths us humans become attached to them.

Caroline said...

Oh Middlechild that's sad he looks like a lovely dog. Maybe a shot of slow-release cortisone, would help to make him feel a bit brighter? You could maybe ask the vet, if he/she has no other suggestions? Certainly helps my old cat who's pushing twenty. Some people don't believe in cortisone, but the difference in Oedipus' demeanour and spirit, was absolutely amazing. (I want some). I also want a vet to be my palliative carer when I'm old and ready to cark it. I had a friend--an ex-alcoholic who discovered in his early sixties (low and behold) that only 10% of his liver was functional. He had been feeling a bit crook and was a bit jaundiced, but still walking, talking, laughing. Some young, punk, medicos in their infinite wisdom decided it might be worth trying to remove the offending majority of his liver. Two weeks after this major operation his body decided the situation was clearly now untenable and he went into multiple organ failure and died. A vet simply would never have advised such a major operation on one so already clearly decrepit. (Sorry for long comment).

Love, care, and maybe some cortisone and Thorn might kick on happily for a while yet?

rosemary said...

Our Charlie had fatty tumors everywhere. We had the largest ones taken out, but they just came back. He spinal problems and was in paiin most of the time. Love Thorn,take good care of him like you have done all of these years and that is all you can do...keep him comfortable.

Citymouse said...