I stayed on my diet and Mom did all she could to keep my stress levels down. We were in the hot part of summer now, and I didn’t get to go in the truck as often because the air-conditioning went out. So I stayed in the house a lot and slept on my couch, keeping cool with my dog and cat brothers and sisters. Mom had some orphan kittens she found in the duck feeder, and she and I stayed up for a few weeks together, making sure they ate every four hours.
It was all normal, but I noticed Mom was looking at my leg and feeling it more often. She seemed worried too. It wasn’t bothering me, but it had grown a lot. It was now softball size, and I overheard Mom say she was worried about it rupturing.
She talked with Dr. Aaron again, about options. They really hadn’t changed. She did a lot of reading on the internet about Soft Tissue Sarcomas and she talked a lot with her friends about my odds if it was this, and my odds if it was that, and so forth.
It seems that if I had a Grade I or II a reduction of the mass had a significantly low chance of metastasizing. But if it was Grade III, those odds jumped to anywhere from 45%-50% depending on what study she read. We didn’t know the grade of my lump, and the diagnostic tests were expensive. She began to consider reducing the mass without the diagnostics and playing the odds and foregoing chemotherapy, because chemo can produce it’s own set of problems anyway.
Now, before you judge my mom too harshly…
I am not the only dog here. I live on a farm with livestock, and everyone must be fed. Everyone has to have their health needs met, and emergencies happen. Two little boys take priority over everything, and there is only one Mom, only one income. We are not the typical family of one household pet who can be lavishly spoiled and no-expense spared. We live practically. I wasn’t in pain. It was just an ugly lump. And there was no affordable option.
Back to reducing the mass. Mom admitted to Dr. Aaron she was more worried about the lump than I was. Turns out reducing it would cost more than amputation, even without the chemo. Nuts. Nobody knew how much time it might take from me, or if it even took any at all. So again, Mom decided to wait and see, and wait for me or the lump to tell her when it was time to be more proactive.
But Mom did start reading about tripods, or tripawds. She found a great site, tripawds.com, and began reading through other people’s stories. You should check it out if you’re considering a possible cat or dog amputation.