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Old 01-16-2013, 09:25 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Name: Pat
Dog's Name: Archie, Abbey, Ava, Mona Lisa and Tinker
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 19,577

Hi Cathy, I also remember you...I used to be "Archie's Mom" and then "2maltmom".

I'm so sorry you are having to deal with this painful time. We never imagine our sweet little puppies leaving us early and having to endure pain - it's got to be utterly heartbreaking not being able to do anything about it.

My Archie is now 9 and has LP in his hind legs, arthritis in all his legs, and he had torn his ACL a few years ago, had one ear canal removed last July and now has constant ear infections in his other ear.....I never wanted this for my sweet boy. But what you're going through must be almost too much to bear.

Glad you're back. Hope to see you around more often...
Pat and "The A Team"

Archie, Ava and Abbey
Life is Good!!!....and keeps gettin' better!!!

To get to Ava's FB page...
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Old 01-16-2013, 09:27 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Name: Janene
Dog's Name: (Dearest Babinka 06/09/14 at the Rainbow Bridge) Peppino, Tiny Tina, Momma Nellie & Mister Sqeaky
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Ontario
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Originally Posted by DoctorCathyG View Post
ivysmom...oh my gosh, you know i feel. you took my emotions and you were able to really lay it out. i couldn't have said it better. i didn't know how to say that to someone. i feel guilty that this innocent little girl, who was supposed to live to be old, is being cheated. it's just not fair.

and then i kept looking for treatments. i'm contacting sweden and australia and england. and the vet here was insulted. but what if there's something we could do? she keeps telling me not to harm sprite. that makes me feel bad. that makes me feel like she's saying that i'm hurting her.

i don't know how you all do it, having multiple pets. i'm done. this is too much. it hurts too much. i only want sprite. she's my heart. i never thought i could love something this much. when i first got her, oh my gosh, my plan was to have her as a purse dog. i was going to treat her like a doll. she's a living being. she taught me how to care for others, she taught me to grow up. she's the reason i got into vet school.

i lay with her, and i feel her beating heart, the warmth of her skin, the breath coming from her nose....i don't ever want to lose it. i smell her little feet that smell like popcorn...and i dont want that smell to ever go away. i don't know how else to say it...this just sucks.
Welcome back to SM!!!! I think you will be a wonderful vet............becuase you have a heart and understand what people go through when they will have to make the hard decision. I have three fluffs one was born with a really bad heart and was only expected to live to 6months to a year max!!!!! She is three years old, and just started to have problems and is on med just last year!!!!! My vet is amazed as he said sometimes miracles always beat the law of science. (that is how bad her heart is) I know how that feels when they say there is nothing that you can do about it, but just enjoy them..................... I really hope that you can find a solution to help your baby!!! well at least you are in the right spot ..................right here on SM!!!!!
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:26 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Name: Glenda
Dog's Name: Madison, Axel and Paxton
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Location: Texas
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Dear Cathy, I'm so sorry you are going through this. Please lean on us for support as you need us....and please give little Sprite a hug and a kiss from me.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:32 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Name: Cathy
Dog's Name: Sprite & Ellie (maltese). And Gruffi (german shep mix)
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: fort collins, co
Posts: 11

Thank you so much everyone. And believe me, Sprite doesn't act like there's anything wrong. She hasn't even had a hypoglycemic episode (trembling muscles, lethargy, seizure, etc)--thank goodness. I was really shocked when the doctor kept saying that she had an insulinoma. And i was in disbelief because she never acted sick. I was like "before breakfast we would walk an hour, no problem" and she was like "yeah, that can happen".

It feels like forever ago now. We had bloodwork in august and then again december 13th, both said blood glucose was in the 60s. The next week I did ultrasound, found the nodule on her pancreas, later in the day we aspirated it. That same day (monday) i was like 'take blood, lets do all the other tests" and we checked for addisons, bile acids, and insulin:glucose. Everything was normal---but having normal insulin with a low glucose is bad. And on tuesday the cytology from the aspirate came back saying 'islet cell cancer'.

We scheduled surgery for december 26th, they did a biopsy of her liver. on the 28th i was able to take her home and found out that the liver had isulinoma.

i checked her blood last monday and it showed low blood glucose. I've been having to feed her 4x/day and she HATES eating. so this has been tough. I contacted an alternative medicine nutritionist and just waiting for the nutrition plan. we plan to give her herbs/supplements that will slow down tumors. i plan to put her on an all organic diet.

i'm just scared to walk her now. i'm scared when she doesn't eat enough food. i'm scared of losing her. I'm hoping that my story will motivate people to do yearly bloodwork (CBC and biochem) and when your dog is a 'senior' (over 8 yrs old---which i think is crap because maltese don't act like seniors at 8) to do a bi-yearly bloodwork.

what sucks...this cancer is rare. that they can't just remove it and everything is good. i know it's not the worst thing she could have. and i sound like i'm complaining when all of you have had this heartbreak before. i'm just not used to it.

and THANK YOU to ALL the members for welcoming me--even when we don't know each other, i still feel like we know how it is to be close to our little babies. You all know how i'm feeling. i appreciate that. for a while i was feeling crazy for contacting all these researchers in all these other countries---but again, what if they know something my oncologists dont know? it would be amazing to give her a longer life.

thanks for being there for me.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:48 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Name: Nickee
Dog's Name: Yogi
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Uniontown,pa
Posts: 3,231

Cathy,you are still in my thought and prayers-i read the post yesterday. I Thought about you all last night. You Will Make A Fantastic Vet,My Dear!!
I Know Your Heart is Heavy,and still have so much to go thru. You Be strong and know that one day-You will be a comfort to alot of mommies going thru this same thing. Nickee&Yogi in PA
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:53 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Name: Barbie
Dog's Name: Zoe (Kyra my Angel in Heaven)
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: New York
Posts: 5,480

Cathy, so sorry your going through this with Sprite. I know what its like to watch your furbaby have an illness....I lost my furbaby Kyra 2 years ago and it still hurts so much. You can only love her and take care of her right now as best as you can. Stay strong and love her to pieces!!
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Old 01-16-2013, 11:59 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Name: Karen
Dog's Name: Bella and Jasmine (and Heidi at the Bridge)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Mount Joy, PA
Posts: 1,558

Cathy, I am so sorry for what you are going through. I will keep you and Sprite in my prayers. It is so hard when one of our babies is sick. You want to fix them and make them well, but sometimes it is out of our control. I lost my Heidi last January to CHF and I still miss her terribly. When she was first diagnosed, I was willing to try anything to get her well. I feel your pain. We're here for you if you need anything. Even if it's just to "talk".

"In a perfect world every dog would have a home and every home would have a dog"
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:00 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Name: Susan
Dog's Name: Mia
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Virginia
Posts: 146

I am so sorry Sprite is not doing well. Me and Mia will keep yall in our prayers. I beleive that even now Sprite is sharing with you and teaching you. You will be a wonderful Vet with alot of compassion and understanding for your patients and their parents. Hugs are being sent to both of you.
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Old 01-16-2013, 07:38 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Name: Marisa
Dog's Name: Obi (Bellarata's You Better Believe It) & Owen (Aria Maltese)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Southern California
Posts: 4,446

Originally Posted by IvysMom View Post
Hi, I'm a relative newbie to Spoiled Maltese so I wouldn't have been here when you were here before. However, I feel kinship to you: I also went to CSU where I got my Master's in Wildlife Biology. I've also taken short-courses at the Equine Research Center there. CSU is a wonderful school.

I also lost my beloved 11 year old Golden Retriever this past May to aplastic aenemia of unknown cause. I understand exactly what you're saying. I expected to be with her for many more years and the shock of losing her way too soon really ripped a hole in my heart that still aches 8 months later. I feel that I should have been able to do something to save her and that she should still be here.

When our dogs live to ripe old ages, 15, 16, even 17 (the age my first Maltese was when she died this past August), we are more emotionally prepared for their passing. We can take comfort in the fact that they had a long, full life. When we lose them at the relatively young age of 11, it seems as if we are cheated and they are cheated out of so many more years together, leaving us feeling far more devastated than we would be if lost them at 17. I lost them both this past summer within a few months of each other. When I think of my Maltese I can smile and fondly remember the joy we had together all those years. When I think of my Golden - which I can hardly do because it is so painful - the guilt I feel for not being able to give her those extra years which in my heart I feel she should have had compounds the pain of losing her and makes it so hard to move past it. I feel I failed her by not being able to give her the long life this wonderful girl deserved. I know that is not logical, there was nothing I could do, but that sense of failing her brings a lot of added pain to the loss.

I suspect this is part of the terrible pain for you. You feel she SHOULD be able to live a longer life than what her prognosis now is; you desperately want to be able to do something to help her. Both of you are being cheated out of your time together. That feeling of helplessness adds to the aching hole you feel in your heart.

While I agree with your friends that it is important to cherish whatever time you have left with Sprite, I also understand that for you that time is tarnished by the pain of impending loss. Try to remember though that Sprite doesn't know. She has no idea that your time together is short. She is still happy to be with you and her joy when she is with you isn't clouded by a sense of loss or fear. Bask in her happiness and joy at being with you and take comfort that she feels no sense of loss or fear. Make your mission to keep her feeling as comfortable and happy as she can be which is how you can best help her now. And when it is time, ease her out of this world as you hold her in your arms, knowing that you gave this little girl a life filled with love. Then you can find peace in knowing that Sprite spent her too short life knowing that she was loved by you.

I'm so sorry for you both that you are having to go through this.
I couldn't have said it better Cathy, you are always welcome to share what is going on. I know that you will treasure each day with Sprite and will make the best decisions on her behalf. thinking of you both...
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