Thursday, November 20, 2008

Chemical Warfare Update: Day 8

Today marked the end of the first week of Bailey's chemo. We thought we were lucky and had made it through unscathed, but a late developing infection in her ear proved otherwise and has officially been blamed on the chemo. 

She spent the day at the vet to get treatment #2, but her CBC (Complete Blood Count) test showed she wasn't quite ready for it. Her white blood cell count was 4.6 (6.0 is low normal). He said that's not terrible, but specifically her neutrophil count (which is a type of white blood cell) was below 3000, which is the level they want it to be at or above before each dose of vinblastin. Hers was 2900, but he said if he gave her the treatment anyway, then next week could be even worse and (more) side effects could show up. 

So, we held off. She is still on antibiotics, got her ear all cleaned up and is on hold until Dec. 1 where we'll try again. If her ear doesn't look better by Monday, I'll have to take her back in, but otherwise, we get a reprieve from the vet's office for an entire week...something we haven't done in more than a month! Lucky us...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Chase

We already know Millie is a digger and a chewer. I found her doing both outside this afternoon...the question was, what was she chewing on? Usually, it's just a stick or branch or root or clump of dirt. But after seeing some evidence...

...I was pretty sure she was not chewing on any form of tree or plant. 

So, the chase began of me trying to find out what she was can see how it ended (you can also see  how well-trained my dog is and how well she listens to me. I'm definitely the alpha!) 

The trouble is we have about 10 of these sprinkler heads in our back yard. If she's found this one, she's bound to find the others. I can only hope for colder weather where the ground freezes solid to the point where her claws cannot dig through it. 

Sweet Bailey

Had to share this cute pic of Bailey. Despite the cold weather, she and Millie love being outside. The knot on the side of her face is one of those mean mast cell tumors. But, she's still cute!

Ear We Go Again...

Today marks the end of week one with Bailey's first dose of chemo. So far, she has done great. We've  noticed nothing different about her at all. That's the good thing. 

The bad thing is that I found a new issue yesterday. I noticed when I was rubbing her ears that she yelped a little. I decided to take a look, since it was the infamous 3-surgeries ear, and I immediately saw the problem. It appears that her skin and/or scar tissue in her ear has grown so fast that it is taking over. When I looked at her ear, there was no ear canal, no entry at all. The skin is completely covering the entrance to her ear. It looks like it was just sewn shut. 

I was able to get a few gentle pokes of a Qtip through there, so I know it's not completely closed, but still, it can't be a good thing. As luck would have it, her doc and vet tech are both off on Wednesdays...I really don't want anyone else dealing with it since she has such a complicated history. So, I've decided to wait until tomorrow when she goes for her second dose of chemo. I hope that is not a mistake, but it's what we decided. She seems to be fine although you can tell it is irritating her a little. She is still on antibiotics, so hopefully they are helping to fight whatever could be lurking on the other side. 

Ugh, if it's not one thing, it's another. We'll see how tomorrow goes.