Aug 26, 2010

The day after

Day 2 - Wednesday, August 25th
A very not cool change
All was going so well, it was especially upsetting when he started doing poorly. After a few-step stroll in the house, he felt very hot. (It doesn't help that it's hot as F here right now!)

Yep. His temp was 105.5. Not good. (Normal dog temp is 100.5 - 102.5.)

Thankfully, Jen is here and invaluably helpful. We gave him cold fluids, soaked him in ice water dipped towels and iced his hip area. I was very worried when he started having really labored breathing, holding his head out as if he couldn't breathe well.

Suddenly, all of my calm and focused demeanor drained out through a hole the floor (one can only assume). It was a scary couple of hours for me. I kept treating his fever, and Jen kept monitoring him. After a dose of Metacam (an NSAID), he started getting better.

It seems that this is, most likely, his reaction to pain. Ugh.

Cas on his own 3 paws
Thankfully, he was up on his feet later that day.
In fact, he was up on his feet, all by himself!

So, he's already eating and walk-hopping. He's recovering and learning so fast. He doesn't want to drink much, but so far he's willing to eat kibble soup. (I'm so tricky.) The site is definitely swollen and has LOTS of bruising (see: picture at right). All normal, though painful looking.

Still no peeing or pooping. That's going to be a challenge the first time. He'll figure it out though; they all do!

His personality is starting to shine through the sutures and bruising now too. When the paw came up, inviting (or was it demanding?) some chest rub action, I knew he was doing alright. It melts my heart every time.

Gratitude as great attitude
I can't say enough about how the support of my best friends who were able to be here in person has helped me and Castor. Dabs has been constantly at my side helping since I heard the news. Matt, Cas's poppa, was able to come out from Madison to be here. Castor's roommates, Rob (a human) and Hoshi (his kitten sister), can't be here, but they send love to him every day.

Eric performed Castor's surgery with skill and love, and I am so grateful to him and everyone at CARE who helped out.

Jen has been invaluable in his surgery (literally. she scrubbed in for it.) and the ensuing days recovering, both from her love and her experience. Her and her roommates, Sarah and Stephanie (humans); Maya, Doodle, and Marius (doggies); and Jimini Cricket (the mini horse previously owned by the King of Pop...Seriously!) have generously welcomed us, and the entourage, into their home.

I can't imagine having other people care for Castor in the hospital or going through this recovery in San Francisco. Not only has being here, surrounded by loved ones and more nature than concrete, been vital for him; it's been essential for my serenity and sanity in all of this craziness.

And to those of our friends who are supporting from afar, in prayers, words, and/or money, I am so grateful. I can't possibly list you all here, because, fortunately, there are too many of you. However, you are all helping Castor through this ordeal, and I can't express how much that means to me.

The other people I'm grateful to are those who put theirs and their dogs experience with cancer and amputation out there for me to read. That is one reason I'm documenting everything here. I want Castor and I to be of service to anyone who has the shit luck of having to go through this.

I've heard gratitude defined as great attitude. Of course, I would not have chosen this path, and I cannot say I am grateful for what Castor is going through.

I can say that I am grateful for being able to support him through this. He has given me unconditional, devoted love his entire life. I am absolutely grateful to offer the same to him now.

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