Going back to the very first photo I used on this website, Rascal has a message.
It’s the holidays, and like any dog Rascal loved the various human delicacies. The season to sit below the dinner table and wait for the gift of table treats.
Thinking about Rascal’s passing and the holidays at the same time has inspired an idea.
How would Rascal want his will to be? Who would he want to receive his various possessions?
Some stuff is easy, his matching harness/collar/leash set will fit Ebbie and Roro wonderfully. His winter clothes are a size that will fit them as well.
However, Rascal understood the concept of Holiday Spirit. Because of this I’ve decided to ship his Ruffwear Webmaster Harness to anyone in the Tripawds community that needs a size small but perhaps can’t afford such pricey gear on top of medical expenses. It is practically brand new as Rascal was more of a nudist and preferred not to wear it.
This is where you come in, fellow Tripawd fans, I don’t know who would benefit from this. Spread the word, prompt me to post in a specific forum, help me get this harness to whomever may need it this winter. I don’t know if anyone would want this item, but if I can give it away in the spirit of the season, I would like to.
Because Rascal would never want his passing to affect the wonder of winter, I’m continuing to follow his lead.
At approximately 12:00 pm on Saturday, December 12th… Rascal died.
He did things his way always, and decided to leave us before anymore vet visits or medical intervention. Whatever was going on with him caused massive internal bleeding, and I held him through his last breaths as I promised him I would years ago.
It’s been five days, and I still have no beautiful tribute or inspired thing to say to this wonderful community. I can only inform you all that it is over, we won some battles, but lost the war.
After over half my life spent with him only two words are appropriate for the end of his life.
I got the worst news today. It looks like the swelling and issue with Rascal’s stump is a lot more serious than we thought. After a third trip to the vet this week when the fluid spread to his back leg, our vet has him on an intense series of medications from Gabapentin to antibiotics.
We were told today that if this treatment doesn’t reduce the swelling in the next few days, it will mean that this swelling around his stump is the vicious return of the tumor that was on his leg before we removed it, and is killing him.
She said if this is the case, she’ll see us on Monday for Rascal’s euthanization.
I’ve been unable to stop crying, so I have a splitting headache and can’t comfort Rascal who is very uncomfortable and very drugged. He gets more upset when I try to take over soothing him since I can’t be soothed myself. I don’t know what to do, and I don’t know what to say.
It feels like it’s been such a long time! I’ve just about completed another term of college, and Rascal is over 5 months post op! I never post in the forum, but I can at least keep this updated!
Today Rascal took yet another trip to the vet. Along with long toenails in need of trimming Rascal’s had some trouble with his stump. After a hard stumble he acquired fluid buildup and bruising. Two weeks of Rimadyl later and it had gone down but reappeared after the pill train stopped. It’s become a much bigger stump since. Along with being swollen and bruised, it’s also been very painful for my bubby.
He is on restricted activity so we opt to carry him around more, but since his stump is so very sore his weight distribution when being picked up is a bit tricky. He also had another mysterious lump that had me absolutely panicking, but today we were given the great news that it was not more of the same, but is thankfully benign.
Now Rascal is back on Rimadyl for a month this time, and we’re going to see how it goes after that. He may eventually need x-rays or a procedure to deal with it, but for now the anti-inflammatories and pain medications are keeping him comfortable. You can kind of see in his photo where the swelling and fluid have been. But overall Rascal continues to charm and delight his family and friends. He even gets a minus one leg discount when getting his toenails clipped now! His vet techs have a great sense of humor and have taken great care of him for every worried post-op visit.
We can only wish the Tripawd Nation the same good fortune,
Just felt like saying hello, and giving a quick low-down on how Rascal is doing as we approach 2 months post-op. For the most part, he’s doing wonderfully. He’s getting quicker with moving around and his belly is more loose skin than ever with his carefully measured diet. He’s still a rolly-polly but I think he’s lovable anyway!
His bald area surrounding his scar has finally got a good scraggly coat of fur coming in, though being the dead of summer I imagine it’ll continue to look sparse until colder weather comes along.
The thing I need to talk about though is a minor issue with his eye, and an upcoming trip for his human. I’m going out of town in 9 days to visit my brother and take a short vacation before the school term starts, and I’ll be away from my boy for 8 days. This was already sort of disconcerting for me, since I am virtually always around save for maybe a few hours here and there. I know when Rascal is thirsty, I know when he needs a trip outside, I know when he just wants help getting down from the sofa since he’s a lazy thing that can jump down, but much prefers a quick lift. I also notice issues with his general health faster than anyone else, not even the tiny marble of scar tissue near his amputation site escaped my radar.
Enter a bloody eye last Friday night. Cue freaking out and calls to the vet by Saturday morning. Told to watch the eye in question for 24 hours, and if it doesn’t bleed again it should be fine. It didn’t, we went about our business. Then yesterday morning arrived, along with a green discharge and a swollen eye socket. Cue more freaking out and a rushed visit to the vet!
Just when Rascal thought he wouldn’t have to keep going there!
I was so worried about big eye problems that it was a huge relief when my vet explained the source of the blood and gross discharge was probably the skin tag he has on his upper eyelid. He’s had it for years with no issue, but the vet suggested he probably scratched it while itching his face and started off the irritation and blood which then led to a minor infection over the weekend. His actual eye is fine, it’s just been the avenue for drainage. 20 bucks of antibiotic eye-goo and some rimadyl later and we’re home and relaxing. Now I’ve got to keep him on these medicines for 7-10 days, so pretty much right up until I leave town.
Somehow I imagine this vacation is not going to be as relaxing as I’d hoped. If everything wasn’t already paid for and more or less set in stone I’d be tempted to cancel entirely, though I know it’s not exactly healthy to be so attached at the hip with my elderly puppy. But I alone knew about that bloody eye, and I alone noticed how swollen (not very) his eye socket had become. Anxiety doesn’t necessarily listen to reason, and knowing my mom is an excellent care giver doesn’t really ease the feeling.
This trip is going to be a lesson in co-dependency, and I know it’ll be good for us. But I also know if anyone understands unreasonable anxiety and attachment to a three-legged wonder, it’s the Tripawd Nation!
Thanks for letting me get all that off my chest guys.