I drove a support vehicle for the local cycling club on Sunday. It was a 120km road race from Townsville to Charters Towers with just under 50 riders. I ended up doing the support alone as Dee was taking one of our dogs to the Vets. Stanley is one of two dogs in the house- a fox terrier, and an absolute charmer.
Always quick to greet us at the end of a day- no matter how rotten work may have been- he makes us forget all of the bad things we may have had to endure. His only request, "throw the ball for me. Endlessly, if you don't mind." Oh, and his very vocal demands to be fed just as we're trying to prepare our evening meal.
Early yesterday morning he was very uncomfortable and making a lot of groaning sounds. Dee decided to stay home and keep an eye on him. His condition quickly deteriorated and Dee rang a good friend to take her and Stanley to the Vet.
The early prognosis was not good- his liver had failed and he was in considerable pain. Dee left him with the vet and came home to await the news. Last night was a wretched time- both of us absolutely miserable with grief. This morning we were at the vets as soon as they opened for what could well be a last visit with our mate. He was quite bright-eyed and very happy to see us and even though he was on a drip with pain killing medication, we could still see he was in discomfort although certainly not as pronounced as yesterday.
Around 10:30 this morning the senior vet called- they had received the results of further blood tests. There was definitely indication of damage to the liver but whether it was infection, injury or tumour could not be determined. We have agreed to a soft tissue ultrasound to see if a determination of the damage (extent and type) can be made.
The vet advised that the liver has a large capacity for regeneration so we're hoping that it's the lesser of the evils. If not, we will not prolong his suffering but we live in hope.
I hope I have better news to write of next time.
Update 20/04/09 17:00
The news from the vet was unfortunately very bad. Stanley had multiple tumours in his liver and severe thickening of the stomach wall which was indicative of the location of the primary tumour. At 4:45pm today, Stanley passed away peacefully with Dee and I at his side.
Good-bye Mate. I hope you get to chase tennis balls forever.
Cheers- ride safe