bad

I saw the x-rays. We’re looking at a severely enlarged heart, a possible neurological condition, and the smallest windpipe Dr. Young’s ever seen in a dog River’s size, which is the main problem. This is a genetic condition, apparently usually seen in Toy breeds. Because the size of his windpipe extends from lungs (deep in his chest) to mouth, emergency tracheotomy would be nearly impossible. His trachea has collapsed now, although not bad enough for him to suffocate, and he’s still at the vet on meds to keep him sedate and happy while I deal with the information and try to make enough sense of it all to make an informed decision.

If we examine his trachea, the endoscope could cause further damage and kill him.

Any use of anesthesia could kill him, which makes other treatment dangerous.

The wind pipe/trachia situation is genetic and not going to go away, so he’d be a wheezing dog wanting to run and play, but unable to.

The neurological condition I can’t remember or wrap my tongue around is treatable, but the treatment itself could harm him further. Plus, it would leave him in that horrible wanting to run, but unable to do so condition.

Basically, River is at a “quality of life” crossroads yet again. This dog continues to break my heart.

About timothyjlambert

Timothy J. Lambert is allegedly a writer.
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28 Responses to bad

  1. Damn! I wish I had the gift of words to fully express my sadness at this news. I never had a dog, so I can’t really relate, but I do understand how they can really tug at your heart. Sending hugs and whatever good juju I can conjure up your way.

  2. _jandy_ says:

    oh tim.

    i hate things like this.

    you give river extra kisses for me.

  3. varsitynj says:

    Oh, man… Has he had breathing problems before? It seems hard to believe they didn’t see this with all the vet visits he’s had.

    Damn, Tim. I’m sorry you guys are going through all this.

  4. dogrl says:

    Oh, no!! I am so sorry to hear this! What a bunch of horrible things to think over/decide. I have no idea what I would do if this were happening to one of my girls. Lots of hugs being sent from up here.

  5. rio3001 says:

    i’m so sorry.

    i wish i could fix it in some way..
    i’ll def’ly send warm thoughts that way.

    again..i’m really sorry about this.

  6. marikanola says:

    Oh Tim, I am so sorry – no matter what you decide I will send nothing but big warm thoughts to both of you. I wish there was something I could say or do to make this better.

  7. Quality of life is something that you get to determine. Hard as it is at times. Is he happy? Comfortable? These are the things we have to use to determine what we should do. My cat of 13 years went through a serious change; he became diabetic. I gave him shots twice a day for a long while. Then, he began to walk in circles. He couldn’t stop. But he was still, Whiskey. He was still himself, just with some different quirks. One morning, he began to fall over while walking in the circles, and his head tilted. I made the decision. We determined that he had a brain tumor, but to do surgery was just out of the question. He was too far sick. Remember one thing, Tim, you have to decide what you think is his quality of life. I know being his parent, you will be able to do what is right for you and him.
    If you need me, I am here for you.

  8. smoness says:

    Nothing to say, but…

    …Fuck.

    You know how to find us if you need ANYTHING. Do Not hesitate to call, we’re just around the corner.

    Now it’s my turn to give you big hugs in my head; and save one for Mr. Golden for me.
    -Love You

  9. rhondarubin says:

    Tim…I’m so sorry. I know exactly what you’re going through. You know I’m (we’re) always here if you need anything. I’m sending hugs and good wishes to you and River.

  10. Anonymous says:

    It’s no consolation, but as a dog owner, mine is breaking right along with you. I am so, so sorry.

    Jeffrey dba Gatsby’s Ghost

  11. marikanola says:

    Hey – wanted to let you know I was thinknig of you and River today, please be gentle with yourself ..

  12. Anonymous says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about River. I know how deep these pups can get into your heart.

    I haven’t read all the posts but was curious if your vet had diagnosed heart failure as the reason behind River’s symptoms. My German Shepherd was diagnosed with heart failure a year ago and is doing quite well with treatment. She also has a collapsed trachea and an enlarged heart. The coughing and gagging you describe is a classic symptom of heart failure and what led to my dog being diagnosed. It’s well controlled with medication.

    Sending out hugs and good thoughts to you and River.

    Gwynn

    Gwynn

  13. Anonymous says:

    That’s a really tough position to be in. I’m really sorry.

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