Thursday, April 26, 2012

What a difference a week makes

First let me report that the 5K went very well. Unfortunately Jenny had a sore paw and couldn't participate. Zola was my substitution. A pinch runner (walker) if you will. I figured if she got too tired she was small enough to carry. She did just fine. I only carried her when she panted and then it was because I was being paranoid. She only tolerated it for a few minutes at a time then struggled to get put back down. Since we weren't actually running it really wasn't an issue. Here we are with our friends Ashley and Prudence (she wanted nothing to do with the paparazzi as you can see) and Angelica and Leo. The weather for the day was incredible. Sunny and warm but not too hot for the dogs.

After the 5K we went over to the Loyal Biscuit Co. for the book signing for my friend Jen Blood. Here I am looking like a psycho stalker. Somehow very fitting. Why hold a book signing at a dog store you ask? Because the main character shops there for her dog of course.

Now for the other shoe. This weekend I was cuddling with Zola when I noticed a pretty sizable lump on her jaw. So Monday morning she came to work with me to get it checked out. We needed to do x-rays as it was not just a simple abscess like I had hoped. It turns out that it is some sort of mass and she cannot open her mouth as wide as she should be able to. She can only open it about an inch to an inch and a half. The doctor also saw evidence of deterioration in the joint of the jaw. This is a problem for a couple of reasons. One is if the mass is what is interfering how far she can open her mouth, and it keeps growing, she won't be able to eat eventually. She has always been a messy eater but I chalked that up to her being a pug with an extremely short jaw and under bite. Two is that we can't put her under anesthesia properly for any length of time because we can't open her jaw enough to safely intibate her. That coupled with her liver shunt makes anesthesia complicated. The position of the mass is also bad so removal doesn't look possible regardless. It was too firm to do an aspirate on though there wasn't any pitting of the bone that looked like the typical signs of cancer. Her lymph nodes are also swollen and her eye on that side cannot be pushed back into the socket as far as the other one can. (sorry I don't know the technical term for that)
So my options are limited because I don't have the finances to do anything extraordinary, nor does  it look like there are many things we could do anyway. We will watch and see if the mass grows and how fast it does. She is not painful in any way thankfully and doesn't seem to notice her limitations. She can eat, and bark, and play bitey face with Jack and Jenny with no issues. She even chews on her bones and shreds cardboard whenever she gets a chance. She is happy. I will just be keeping a close eye on her from now on. We might try an anti-inflammatory if I can find one that will be ok to give that won't bother her liver.
 I am going to post photos I took of her x-rays because I think x-rays are super interesting. Don't get to excited as they aren't the best since I took them with my phone. We did a few views and they vary in angle quite a bit. I wish they were more clear in showing the outline of her flesh so you can see where her nose is supposed to be to give you a point of reference. The mass is on her right side. I'm sorry that I can't remember if some of these rads have been flipped. (I do that because it gives me the illusion I can see better when in fact I can't read x-rays very well.)

This bottom one is with her on her back with her mouth being held open with some gauze.
So while she has been doing great as far as the liver shunt goes, now there is another thing that is threatening to shorten her life with us. I guess the beauty of being her is that ignorance is bliss. I wish we all could be as lucky.


volunteer4paws said...

pug facial xrays are so... whats the word... strange? Not weird, I don't know. Its just.. the jaw and the no nose really stand out in an xray!

I hope it all works out with the growth, and your blonde hair looks awesome!

Kim said...

I see this is a older blog post. I hope your little Puglet is okay.