Labels

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Chloe



Bad Wednesday
===============


I found our 10-year-old greyhound at the bottom of the stairs on Wednesday after I came home from Pilates. I let her out at 5:30pm for potty that same day before I left and she was still OK but when I came back a little past 7pm she's on the floor panting.

She doesn't usually lay on that spot where I found her and thought that was odd. The other odd thing was the way she was panting. It was very loud and continuous. I thought she was having a heart attack or that she's having a stroke so I called the hubby right away and asked him to come home. 

While waiting for the hubby I was trying to call her  to stand up. She responds to "c'mon, let's go" so I kept saying that. At first she wouldn't do anything but eventually she tried to stand up and that's when I saw her limping on her left leg.  Good, she's not paralyzed. Although the thought of her falling down the stairs that caused her to limp really  horrifies me.

She was still panting and she looked so disoriented. So I fixed her smaller bed and asked her to come and lie down. She did and she winced when she accidentally bumped her left leg on the floor when she plunked her butt on the bed. It was so breaking my heart to see her in pain.

Finally, the hubby arrived. By then I have already found out that the break is way up on the shoulder part. The hubby called our dog's vet but they're already closed so he called the emergency number for a Pet Hospital. We were able to get hold of a nurse there and we immediately drove our dog to the vet.




At the hospital.
===============

They did an x-ray on her and she has a very bad break. The husband and I are trying to rack our brain trying to figure out how she broke her leg and why it's that bad. The doctor said she would need a surgery and we would need to take her to  an Ortho. We know our bills would be high because there's now a specialist involved but it is what it is. Our immediate goal is to have them fix her broken bone right away so she wouldn't be in pain anymore (the husband says that kind of panting means she's in too much pain).

We confined her there because we don't want to transport her back in the car and to the house and do more damage to the leg. Plus we figured, they would know how to transport a dog with broken bone to the Ortho better than we do. We did make sure they give her a pain killer, which they did.




Things went down hill.
==================
The next day, the day time vet called us and told us our dog has a pathological fracture caused by bone cancer and the reason she had such a bad broken leg is due to her  bone getting too brittle because of the Osteosarcoma. With that they prefer not to fix the broken bone, lest they'll just do more damage.  We have an option to amputate her but after 6 months or less we'll be back to where we are right now and had to do the same thing again. We will just be prolonging our dog's agony. The other thing that we found out is that her cancer came back. She had a surgery last year to remove a lump on her leg that turned out to be a malignant tumor. Her vet was able to remove it but she warned us it would come back and it did. So now she has another cancer on top of the other. It just breaks our heart.


We were reading about osteosarcoma (bone cancer) and all the articles we read are just saying the same thing. I'll share one of the excerpts:


"When there is no light at the end of the tunnel, there is no reason to have your dog go through hell, which is what will slowly happen. Each day your greyhound will get a little worse and be in more pain ...."
"No one should have a guilty conscience putting their dog to sleep before it is in excruciating pain. You have given your greyhound a great gift! No one should feel badly because they did not amputate their dogs leg or treat their dog with chemo. Ultimately, you should probe your vet for the hard answers. Veterinarians are programmed to make the process longer and more expensive. Come to a compassionate decision swiftly putting your greyhound first and your feelings second."

source - http://www.ngap.org/greyhound-health-limping-osteo-y448.html

and here's another:

"The ultimate goal in the case of osteosarcoma (and all diseases) should be to relieve discomfort and promote a good quality of life. The dog’s age and response to pain should be of utmost concern when determining which approach to take. Some adopters choose pain management over surgical intervention until the dog’s quality of life is visibly diminished. Your veterinarian can prescribe narcotic pain relievers for maximum effect should you decide to take this route. Depending on how advanced the cancer is and the degree of discomfort exhibited, euthanasia may be the best approach and certainly the least traumatic for the dog. It is we humans who fear the loss and have difficulty letting go, but the kindest and most humane treatment may be to give them eternal freedom from pain rather than prolong the inevitable."

source - http://www.gcnm.org/concernsnews.html





The dreaded day.
===============
It was very difficult to come home on Thursday knowing that it would be the last day we would be seeing our Chloe.

Seeing her bed and her toys and all the places around the house where she would just lie down is just too much for me to handle. When the husband came home, I was still crying and looking at his red nose and blood shot eyes, I know he is too. If I'm very upset and very affected, it would be times ten for him. He rescued Chloe from the National Greyhound  Center when Chloe was just 4 years old and Chloe had helped him go thru a death in his family.

We drove to the vet that afternoon. We both are still a mess, crying, maintaining our composure and then cry again the whole time when we were driving.  The husband is more composed. He would cry for a bit to say something he remembered about Chloe but it would just last for seconds. I, on the hand was just crying non-stop during the whole drive.

We're trying to see if there's any other way we could save Chloe but whatever angle we looked putting her to sleep is still the best option for her. When we were less than a mile away from the Vet Hospital, we parked our car to a shopping complex to try and calm ourselves. We discussed about whether we want keep the ashes or opt for mass burial. I wanted to keep the ashes and bury her at her favorite spot at our backyard and bury her with her favorite toy and treats.

We know we only have borrowed time with Chloe since we found out she has a cancer (the other cancer, the bone cancer, was new to us)  but no one or nothing can really prepare you when death is knocking at your door.



Another dog lost.
==============

I lost a pet in the Philippines a year or so ago, months before our wedding in the Philippines and I was very devastated. His name is Cholito. He is an askal (mutt, native dog) and I love that dog to bits. I was even thinking of taking him with me. I just decided against it because I don't want to make him go through  quarantine and the trauma of traveling on a plane. I mean where would they put the dogs? Right next to the luggage? Without me? Who's gonna feed him or pet him when there's turbulence and he got scared? I'm sure they won't let me have him sit on my lap because my dog might start barking and disturb guests. I hate crying kids on plane, I'm sure a yelping dog would be equally annoying. Anyway, I lost him and I was devastated even if I'm used to not seeing him anymore and haven't really seen him for a very long time. Of course I'll be more devastated with Chloe because I see her everyday since I moved to my husband's home.




April 17 between 6:45 to 7:00 PM
==========================

I dont want my last memory of Chloe to be an image of her lifeless body so I told the husband I don't want to be there when they put her to sleep. The husband understands but he said, he on the other hand, had to be there because he doesn't want her to die alone. When he said that it suddenly struck me,  yes, I shouldn't let her die alone and my husband needs me, so I stayed.

We wanted a few moments with her before they put her to sleep so we were talking to her and was telling her we will miss her and we were just petting her the whole time. We kept telling her we love her and that her pain would go away soon. That she don't need to suffer anymore. She's always scared when she's in a place she doesn't recognize so she was shaking. We tried to comfort her and asked her to sit so she could relax. Finally she did sat down, the same time the doctor came in to tell us it's time. The doctor has 2 syringes in her hand. A sedative and some other medicine. The doctor explained to us what the procedure would be and what to expect.

We were just petting her the whole time and my husband keeps whispering to her that we love her. I can't talk anymore. I'm all choked up.  When the doctor injected the sedative she started closing her eyes slowly and fell asleep. Moments later the doctor injected the second syringe and started monitoring her heart beat. The doctor was very sympathetic and kept telling us how sorry she was that Chloe and us had to go thru that. I was trying so hard not to cry in front of the doctor but when she injected the second syringe it's like someone opened the flood gates. I was crying a river. When the doctor said "she have passed" I just couldn't stay there anymore. I suddenly stood up and went to a corner while the doctor was still talking to my husband. The husband was also crying and that didn't help because it breaks my heart to see any man cry.

I don't want to go thru that again.

I was feeling weak already and I have my back on Chloe because I just can't look at her like that. The doctor left us to have some final moments with Chloe. The husband asked me if I wanted to stay a bit more but I can't talk anymore because I was sobbing  but I tried to communicate by shaking my head.   He knows it took a lot of courage for me to stay there until the end but he understands too that me staying there with our lifeless Chloe would be too much for me to handle so he just nodded and  helped me walked through the door.

He walked me outside the room and the Vet followed us. When we're out the room the Vet was still being very nice and sympathetic and comforting us. She said it's for the dog's best interest.

I really don't want to go thru that again.





The after math.
===============
I remember trying to go through a very bad break-up. I was in such pain I thought I would die of sadness. Losing a pet, is yet another different form of pain. I cannot describe it. I woke up with very swollen eyes that you can blind fold them with a floss.

The husband was very composed while in the room with Chloe, he did cry but it was a quiet crying but as soon as we exited the doors of the Vet hospital he just bawled. It just broke my heart. I've never seen him like that.

We both find it very difficult to come home. I tried to be strong for both of us but the husband is doing a better job than I am. So it was him who tried to hide all of Chloe's stuff from me. Earlier that day I was already having a hard time looking at all of Chloe's stuff and now that she's really gone it would be twice more difficult.




So many things to get unused to.
=========================

She was such a sweet and funny dog. So many things to get unused to. So many things to miss.


It's still hard for us to come home from work. There would be no excited tail and butt wiggling by the door  to greet us when we come home anymore.

I miss how she would smell my face and lick my nose real quick (when she's in the mood) when I come home and I'm poking my head thru the door (before I get inside the house)  and say "kiss, kiss".

There wouldn't be any Chloe sitting in my home office while I work anymore.

I would miss her standing by my home office door giving me her "doggie-look" as if asking permission if she can come in. I  would then wave my hand "come in" and she would slowly walk inside and head straight to me so I could pet her.


empty door

I miss how she would jump up and down and twirl around and around when she sees the hubby carrying her leash (it means it's walking time).

I let her out every morning before I go to work and in the afternoon when I came home from work (the hubby does the lunch times) and it's weird that I don't get to do that anymore and that I don't have to rush coming home from work to make sure I make it home in time for her afternoon wiwi/poop break.

I miss how she comes to me when I open my arms and say "hug" (she doesn't like the hug part but she likes the massage that comes with my hug)

I miss how she learned  to sit when we're eating because she knew begging won't get her anything, sitting does.

I miss that puppy look. or how he would use her nose to nudge our hands to pet her.

I miss how she would smell my face and then lick my face while we watch tv.

chloe forcing to stick her head under the hubby's arm pit



I miss how persuasive she can be with the hubby and how she would  force to stick her head under the husband's arm pit when she wants something right away.




Memorial Walk.
===============


chloe's leash

I walk her when the weather is convenient but it is the hubby who walks her everyday and last Friday, we got her leash out and walked her leash, the husband wants to do a memorial walk for Chloe. I'm still very worried about the husband. Like I mentioned, he's been with Chloe longer than I do so he is the most devastated between us.




The End.
============

We are not planning to get another pet, we are still raw from Chloe's demise. But one day, if and when we are ready, it might be another greyhound. There are just so many greyhounds who needs to be rescued.


It's going to be tough for both me and the husband. Please include us in your thoughts and give your pets extra kisses/petting for us.


We  miss you so much Chloe.




chloe trying to fit inside the small bed
our 40mile/hr couch potato at her dogvacay
 host's bed