Thursday, May 03, 2007

Bad day

My dog has been unable to pee for some days now. There was a growth... which turns out to have been caused by prostate cancer. They suspected it last week, and we got the definitive diagnosis yesterday afternoon. This sort of thing is apparently fairly common in large dogs.

They put a urinary catheter in him Sunday. After a few times, they gave us supplies to do it at home. That did not work, so yesterday they stuck one in permanently, sutured it to him, and put one of those cone/bonnet things around his neck. The vets said that they shouldn't put another catheter into him; if he couldn't pee naturally by Friday, that would be the end.

I came home and saw him. He looked so pitiful and unhappy. "I wish he didn't have cancer," I tried to say, but couldn't get it out without weeping. I can't even type it now without tearing up.

Well, we drained his bladder last night -- he was very uncomfortable. And I couldn't get the "plug" back in, so he dripped all night.

This morning, he somehow managed to circumvent the bonnet thing. The catheter was lying on the floor. I scolded him mildly and took the bonnet thing off him. Then I took him for a walk. He tried to mark a few trees, but nothing was forthcoming. He enjoyed it anyway.

Unless something extraordinary happens, the vet will euthanize him this afternoon.

"Silly dog," I said. "You shouldn't have pulled that catheter out. It was the last one."

Sorry, I just had to wipe my face again.

Well, he enjoyed his walk. He didn't have to wear the bonnet. That foreign object - the urinary catheter is out. The sun is shining and the sky is blue.

For him, it is a good day to die. For us, it will never be a good day to lose him.

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