On July 12th my puppy, Loki, had surgery to remove what was thought to be an invasive cancerous tumor. Every week for the entire month he was back at the vet at least once, but mostly twice a week. The location of the mass on his leg made it difficult to stay closed and heal. Let alone his Houdini ways with the cone. The good news was, it was not cancer. It was an abscess caused by a foreign object under the skin.
He had one four day overnight stays and a one night stay during that time. I was exhausted, he was in pain and frustrated. He was put on antibiotics and sedatives, and he was crated for 80% of the day for a month. He couldn't go anwhere and training came to a complete halt.
During this time I developed friendships and grew one with someone I didn't know very well, but have always liked. These people were resources of information who truly cared for Loki's well being and my sanity. They eased my worries, gave advice, and sent prayers. I am very grateful for these people. All are involved with dogs in some way. One is a former vet tech and dog mom who gave me all the medical information I needed when I was pulling my hair out. I would send her pictures almost daily of the incision site for her opinion, she answered questions about medication, behavior, and ways to keep him calm. One new friend is also a fellow dog mom who's own dog had surgery in the same area in the past. She knew my struggle. This friend makes reversible bandanas, collar covers, poop bags, and more. She would cheer me up sharing new fabrics, gave suggestions that worked for her, and understood my struggle making me feel not so alone. Both of these friends own bully breeds as well, purebred and mixes. We've had discussions on popular views of these breeds, my fears of being looked down upon walking my little beast out and about, and how sad it is that our dogs are demonized by some people and communities. The third friend is my dog trainer. She encouraged me when I felt Loki was going to forget everything he learned, when he would behave oddly, and whenever we had a set back. Which was almost weekly.
My friends and family were always there too. Social media groups I am in followed our struggle, sent well wishes, and also encouraged me. We are almost to the end of this trial. He is now in his cone part of the time instead of 24/7. He is no longer on antibiotics or sedatives. He even had a small outing last weekend to visit some friends at one of my favorite shops.
I can not forget my vet and her staff. She was new to us. We actually had his surgery the week we had our first appointment. She did everything in her power to help me. She was kind, and when I made mistakes she did not lecture or chastise me. She taught me and supported me. Her staff loved on Loki, took care of him, and was kind.
My husband and my son were the biggest help at home. When I was at work they took care of him. They also didn't mind if I went out for a girls' night to have a break from everything every now and then. When I had already missed a lot of work that week for vet appointments my husband took him for me. Since it was summer time, my son stayed home with him, took him out, watched his wound site, and kept the fort down while my husband and I worked. I am forever grateful and I feel so blessed to have them by my side.
It's been a journey that I never want to repeat, but I know now that if I have to go through this again I am not alone. Thank you to everyone who took this journey with us. Your deeds will not be forgotten.