Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Hearts Full of Gratitude

We were stunned this weekend to learn how much money Blueberry's auction raised.  It exceeded any amount that we could have guessed.  We owe a huge debt of gratitude to JD and Max, Frankie Furter, Barbara, the Slimmer Pugs, Ronii and Richie who made the badges, everyone who donated prizes for the auction and bid on things, and to everyone who helped share the word about the auction.  There are more people and dogs to thank than I can even begin to list, so if I forgot to list something that someone did, please know that it was not unappreciated.  I am just in a state of being overwhelmed right now.

Many people have asked us about how Blueberry is doing and what will happen next.  Blueberry is doing remarkably well right now.  She's even grown a nice patch of hair back where she was bald just in time for the nasty winter weather we've just gotten.  Facing her mortality has motivated me to include her in more of our outings and activities, too, which she is happy about.  I daresay, she might even be taking advantage of us a little.  She has a rather long Christmas list.

What will happen next is still up in the air a bit.  I consulted Dr. Cuoto, a really wonderful vet at OSU who specializes in Greyhounds with cancer.  He told me he was willing to consult with my vet.  The head vet at the practice we use is a wonderful man who knows a lot about Greyhounds.  However, he has another, younger vet in his practice who I, frankly, have much less confidence in.  I'll just say that I feel her people skills are lacking and she is not helpful at all in helping you to devise a plan of attack in the face of a serious illness or problem.  I'd get the same reaction from her whether I said we thought we'd just do nothing at this point or if I said I thought we should remove Blueberry's entire head to be sure we'd taken care of the problem.  She seems to understand science and biology well enough, but humanity is a somewhat foriegn concept to her.  She's kind to the dogs and they like her, but well, I'd like to feel like there's some sort of understanding from her. 

One option we are considering is just taking Blueberry to OSU for them to see her there.  I had hoped that we'd be able to deal with things through our vet's office, but I can't wait around for them to get things together forever.  As we know more about what our plan of attack will be, we will share it.  

I hope that if nothing else comes out of this, we will at least be able to someday help someone else feel less alone with decisions like we are facing.  I never realized how heavy the burden of a cancer diagnosis is.  There are so many things I felt like I needed to know and also the pressure of needing to make a decision quickly.  In fact, one of the best pieces of advice that I got was not to rush the decision and to take time to weigh the options.  The desire to make things better is almost overwhelming sometimes.  I have been really thankful to those who have shared with us that they went through the same kind of cancer with their dogs and what they've learned along the way.   One day, I will be the person sharing what I've learned, and it will be a lot of information.

Again, I cannot say enough how much we have appreciated everyone's support, in all the various ways that it has come to us.  We will always be thankful for all that everyone here has done for us.  Blueberry has always been a one of a kind girl, but we had no idea that she was as special to so many people besides us.  Thank you from all of us!

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  1. As we always paw for comments like this, one day it could be any of us -

    So we do what we can!

    Khyra and Her Mom

  2. We're so happy to hear about how much support Bluberry has received. I really hope that she manages to keep getting better and recover. Our fingers and paws are crossed for her!

  3. So glad the auction went well. Hope Blueberry does well with whatever is decided.

    Song and I are sending her big hugs (((Blueberry)))

  4. Wells, Now I am no expert by any means but, I prolly wouldn't recommend removing Blue's head...I dunno, sumptin just tells me her wouldn't look da same.
    Gosh, I so hate dat bout dat young whipper snapper of a DR. Nevers thought too much bedside manners until you get one dat ain't got 'em but we has so we knows what you is talkin' bout.
    Anyways, wonderful news bouts all da monies raised fur Blue. Ya'll has purty great furiends to help and be theres fur ya.


  5. I hope Blueberry's future is healthy and happy, and the worst is behind her. I can't imagine wading through all the information like you've been doing. It has to be overwhelming. Be strong and take care of yourself too. Hugs and scratches to Blueberry!

  6. I know it is not easy to deal with this situation.
    I have been through something like that.
    And yes, the time it took us to decide what to do is very important.
    I'm sure everything will be okay, and that the future of this little princess is full of good things!
    Big Kisses to all!


  7. Hey! That auction thing was super fun! I got to buy momma a present AND help Miss Blueberry.


  8. Sometimes access to lots of information is both a blessing and a curse. No matter what we learn, it's never enough.

    I hope you can find the best team of docs to help you make decisions about Blueberry's treatment.

  9. Im so glad the auction was a success, I hope that blueberry scontinues to be on the mend.
    The young doctors here are the same way... they lack the bedside manner with us humans and seem to lack the personal manner im looking for. Book smarts isnt always the only thing that matters.

  10. I'm happy the auction went so well! And it sounds like you know the steps you want to take for Blueberry's future. You'll be in my doggie thoughts!

  11. So glad to hear that the auction went well, Blueberry has touched so many of us:)

  12. What a roller coaster ride you must be on - highs and lows all over the place. I feel for your concerns with the vet - I've had those same kind of experiences (although I had to laugh at your comment about removing Blue's head to solve the problem!). I'm sure the right people will come along to help out Blueberry!


  13. Your description of the younger vet made me laugh out loud - "removing her entire head". Being a vet requires such a variety of skills, from knowing your medical stuff, to handling animals, to being compassionate to people. When I think of that, I have renewed admiration for my vet!

    It is overwhelming, and I'm glad that you're seeking opinions and researching it thoroughly. I hope that your plan of attack becomes clearer to you soon.

    I'm actually experiencing a bit of terror over here. Last night, a big lump emerged over K's amputation site, which could be super bad news (or, I suppose, just inflammation - but that seems unlikely to me). I couldn't bear to blog about it... but I'm sure we'll be at the vet today.

    I'm so glad that the blogosphere has joined together to help you and Blueberry!!!!! As an aside, every time I see her photo, I think she's such an incredibly beauty!

  14. What is wrong with these young vets? I had the same experience at our previous vet! The younger one is a total moron! When Calhoun was 6 months old. He put Calhoun under anesthesia to do a skin scrape on a place above his eye. BUT there was a place on his side that coud've been scraped with no anesthesia. Calhoun has the short muzzle so anesthesia is a risk everytime. They were scraping for demodectic mange- which he tested positive for. BUT the most common site for this is on the dog's side. I was furious! Don't make a dog mom mad!

    Anyway,I hope Blueberry gets the care she deserves and you get the support you need! Keep us posted!

    The Heartbeats

  15. Blogville comes together to help It's own. We are all willing to lend a paw. Each in his or her own way. It takes a Village with Many Skills and Resources to share and to show we care.
    I would not care much fur that "new" Vet.

  16. I am so glad to hear Blueberry is feeling good. I know how much I have appreciated your thoughts and comments about Dixie. I love my FIGs (friends in greyhounds)! They seem to be the only ones who truly understand me. Love that picture,it is priceless.

  17. So sorry we couldn't participate, we are not currently in the position being loaded down with vet bills of our own at this point for the same specific reason. :( But know our prayers are with you and Blueberry.

    We have been in your position *so* many times having had 19 of them over the years. We've had dogs with cancer two at a time or more, that we have been treating.

    I know how the stomach turns into knots and you even begin grabbing for straws to prop up your hopes. Truth is, you just don't know, you make decisions based on what you hope or on educated guesses, but at the end it comes down to doing what you feel good about and what you feel is right. It is really unfortunate that science is not further advanced enough to be able to really call it accurately and fix things effectively.

    It is a very hard spot you are in, very hard. One thing to always consider, and this is something it took me a really long time to come to, weighing the treatments of such things against what the quality of life is or will be for the hound as they are going through things against what the outcome might be (life expectancy) afterward. Because outcomes are so uncertain, this is really tough to do, but always ask yourself who you are doing this for, yourself or your hound.

    There have been times where we want to do everything and then realize the misery we are putting our hounds through to have them with us for another 6 months. It is the only thing I have to really guide me in all of it...and how far I would go to save one of my loved hounds.

    That said, and I apologize if it is a gloomy bit, I would do anything for my hounds and have. So I know how hard this is for you being where you are. In deciding you just have to follow your gut.

    Vets are actually not supposed to really urge you one way or the other (at least the ones I know and I have worked with quite a few), they are supposed to offer up all the options and lay them before you so you can make as educated of a choice as possible. People feel so many different ways about treatments and all that the vets may have totally different feelings about what you should do, but don't express them to their clients. I personally think it is the rare vet that will tell you what they think.

    I have found myself many times standing before my vets of many years asking, 'well what do you think, what would you do?' And though I get understanding I rarely get the answer I am looking for.

    Again, do the research, ask the hard questions, follow your gut and listen to Blueberry as she will also help you make some of the decisions.

    Fingers crossed and all my love and prayers to Ms. Blue. Lots of hugs to you.

    (Sorry this is so long...but it is a subject that is so near and dear to my own heart I just wanted to share.)

  18. We are praying for you all and hope things go well from here on out. It's a roughtime having all the decisions weighing on you and your right about taking your time. Ms Blue will tell you what she wants, and it's always easier hearing it from them. Thinking of you all!!

  19. It was our pleasure! Your pups bring us such joy.

  20. mee n Richie played a teeny tiny part n wee wished we coulds hav done more. Wee is happi Miss Blue is growin her furs back now ( moms sympafizes she knows day baldie feelin too well ...BOL ). Moms also sayd it is wise not to rush into makin decisions too quickly even tho yoo want to makes her better rite now.
    Wee still sending our bestest healing forts

  21. Hugs and kisses from me and bubbles and pompei. Cept not pompei cause he doesn't even give kisses

  22. Yay! Isn't it wonderful how everybuddy came together again to helps a furend? I think Blogville must be the nicest place on the planet! Don't you wish the rest of the world could be just as nice?

    And my mom says woman's in-too-ish-in is very impawtant and you should listen to it if you don't feel right about that lady V.E.T. We think you'll feel better if you go talk to somebuddy else.

    Wiggles & Wags,

    PeeS. I just read the post about Santa. What the heck? Why would he be skeered to take your leashes? I mean, he flies a sleigh powered by FLYING DEER for crying out loud! Oh, and are you gonna post the picture? I hope so!

  23. We are always happy to lend a paw. Blueberry is in our prayers for a speedy and full recovery. You hang in there!

  24. Oh, Blueberry we are so glad we could pawticipate in this wonderful event. We say our prayers and hold you in our paws every night for a quick recovery. We are just glad that we have been 3 very healthy hounds this year and could help out another hound in need. This just shows us all the amount of caring bloggers out there. BLOGVILLE ROCKS. The HoundDogs and HoundDogMom

  25. We've been away for quite awhile now and so happy to return to your blog and catch up! Looks like so much has taken place and we're so happy to hear how well the fund raising went. Loving the holiday outfit....kudos for keeping it on as long as you did!

    Happy Holidays pups and family! (and good luck with Blueberries giant wish list ;) )

  26. No, thank you for sharing Blueberry (and the other doggies, too) with us. I am glad she is doing well ...

    Your pal, Pip

  27. Job well done for Blueberry!
    Benny & Lily

  28. So happy to helps a furiend! :)

    Woofs and Licks,
    Maggie Mae

  29. Glad to hear that the auction went really Well for Blueberry!

  30. Hang in there. I think the very best thing you are doing right now is all of the quality time with Blueberry. It's good for you and it's good for her.

    I've heard wonderful things about Dr. Couto. The thing about modern medicine is that it is a crap shoot.

    Just know that we've got all paws crossed here.

  31. oh we are fullof the warm fuzzies to know that the auction was a success. please to pass ouw warm toots ofur to blueberry as we continue to pray for her health wiff lotsa luv.

    pibble sugars and wee wiggles
    the pittie pack

  32. I am so glad the auction went well and everyone has been showing such overwhelming support. It doesn't surprise me anymore but the pet blogging community is tremendous. You are definitely not going through this alone. We are all here, cheering for Blueberry with you. Whatever happens in the future, just know that we support your choices one hundred percent. Yay for Team Blueberry!

  33. We all love our greyhound friends. :-)

  34. thanks for the update. I know how you feel. try to put humanity aside in these situations. if she's good medically, then bounce ideas off of other vets for "sanity checks" and use her for what's she's good at. (does this help?) a little? i'm great at dishing out advice. bad at taking it though.

    lots of love to blue from us.

  35. I love you Blueberry!
    I really do!


  36. Sorry we are just catching up... again.... You and your sisters (and mom) are looking very pretty Blueberry, all Xmasy and all!

    We are so happy that you have raised the funds necessary for your treatment(s) to come, whatever they might be. Mum has been staying up and working lots too for my costs and she has those black puffy bags under her eyes. Kinda like a panda.

    Mrs. Taleteller,

    We hope you will be able to work with a vet that you have confidence in and come up with a plan suitable for Blueberry.

    Wishing nothing but the best to you, Mr. Taleteller and the gurrrrrrrrls!!

    Love nibbles,
    Miss Sunshade & mum


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