I mentioned on Facebook how concerned we are about Tilly.
Back in the summer, she started to get an upset stomach, and we changed her food to pouches of meat, rice and veg formulated for ‘senior dogs’ (really, pc-ness for dogs, how absurd) which she loved; nevertheless she started to lose weight and her backbone started to show badly. The week before last she started to be iffy about eating, for the first time in her life – having been underfed for the first 15 months of her life until she came to live with us, food was extremely important to her – and I had to sit and feed her with a fork. By last weekend, I had decided to take her for a check at the vets’ surgery. As I mentioned the other day, I took her on Wednesday and she was put on antibiotics because she had a slightly raised temperature, and a blood sample was taken.
By that time, she wasn’t really eating. However, I cooked her chicken, rice and vegetables and she loved it, and spent the rest of the day coming back to her bowl, which I refilled – she had 5 or 6 meals that day. The rest of the week, she gradually ate less, however, and by Friday afternoon she had pretty well stopped eating. She would take a few bits from our dinner and eat her Bakers Allsorts treats and that was all.
The blood test indicated a problem with her pancreas, and the vet will phone tomorrow to see how she is and ask if I want further tests. Well, by yesterday, I’d pretty well come to the conclusion that there was no point. I know that it’s only too easy, out of misplaced kindness, to keep a sick dog a day too long and that you don’t know when that time is until it arrives and it is too late for it not to suffer. This morning, she wouldn’t eat at all – I’d cooked her an egg for breakfast and pretended it was for me and I was sharing – and I was in doubt whether to bother giving her her antibiotics. I say ‘bother’ not because of the trouble, but because it’s really hard to force her to swallow them, it’s really upsetting for both of us and if they aren’t going to help, I could spare her.
I did give them to her in the end. I reckoned that, if they keep her temperature down, that’s one way she won’t suffer. But I left for church heavy-hearted, quite sure that I’d have to call the vet in tomorrow.
When I got home, the Sage said he’d persuaded her to eat the egg. I gave her some cake too (she surprised us yesterday by eating quite a lot of cake) and then she had some more Allsorts (which are meaty snacks). I did chicken pizza for lunch, I had a bad headache and had no spirit for cooking, and also brought some leftover cooked chicken in here and she ate all the meat off the chicken thigh and all the bits of chicken off my pizza.
Ro came over – he was really upset by the news. It looks like I’m making a fuss about nothing, she wags her tail and looks quite perky, but she is ill. As I say, she never refuses food normally. We fed her cake and she ate more than any of us. I didn’t have any in fact, I gave all mine to her. This evening, I made a chicken casserole and she ate quite a lot.
So I’m hoping against hope for a reprieve. I’ll ask for the blood test and then at least we’ll know. If she has cancer, we’ll call it a day. But if not, we’ll nurse her along.
Ro might drop in here – I told him I’d blogged about our day out yesterday – if you do, Ro, thank you so much. I felt so much better by the time you left, you cheered us all up a lot. Tilly has slept all evening since dinner, and I’ve still to give her her tablets, but she’s had a much better day than I expected.
It’s been a weekend for accidents – Wink’s chap Bod’s mum fell yesterday and broke her hip and elbow. They can’t operate at present as she takes Warfarin so they have to gradually withdraw it, as her blood won’t clot – I’m not sure how long that takes to correct itself. And my friend Brenda’s sister fell and broke her wrist yesterday too – the complication there is that she suffers from osteoporosis and her bones are fragile, and the break is a bad one.