Our dear black lab, Jack, is 10 yrs. old. When our son was 4, he bought our dog with his saved $20 from Easter/Christmas. The Humane Society where we got him said that he was found in a park full of ticks. No one had wanted to adopt him because people think that black dogs are mean & aggressive. He had the sweetest face and temperament. That was over 8 years ago. Jack & our son have been best friends ever since.
We noticed a few lumps behind Jack’s arms a couple of months ago. As we live on one income, vet bills terrify our budget. I shopped around and found a low-cost clinic that operates through donations. They saw Jack and said that he needed surgery. First, we would need to take him to our old vet for a biopsy. The biopsy said that he had 2 on one shoulder (fatty tumors) and 1 on the other (something different-not fatty tumor). All vets said that surgery was necessary.
I took Jack in for surgery at 7:30am today. I left our 12 yr. old son at home to work on Spanish homework and went to pick up Jack. The vet said that his surgery went well, but there was cause for concern. The “something different” lump might be a Liposarcoma. That is a long word for cancer. Not the “you can live after getting it” kind either. The vet said: “He is 10 yrs. old. He has had a long life.” She then told me that they charged an extra $75 on our bill to send away the growth. The bill so far? Almost $500. However, how much is a loved one worth? We will know in 7 days whether Jack has cancer.
I know that many people look at their dog as a protector of their property. They aren’t attached to them. Our family is totally the opposite of that. Jack is a furry kid to us. He is also my son’s best friend. My heart hurts to even think that the results might come back with a cancer diagnosis. Then what? Does his health deteriorate? Do we just medicate him until the end? Will the vet suggest that we put him down? *deep sigh* My heart hurts.
We had a baseball game planned tonight with our Scout troop. I opted out of it so I could watch over Jack. He is always such a happy, energetic guy. The morphine that they gave him made him loopy and tired. He whined all the way home from the vet. He whined most of the afternoon (when he wasn’t asleep). Poor guy.
If you are reading this, would you mind thinking good thoughts or saying a prayer for our furry guy? I know…he is just a dog. However, to us, he is a son with four legs.