Hello friends. As you may (or may not) remember from some of our social media postings, Rufus finally got his anesthetic teeth cleaning on Wednesday, March 13. Yay!!!
He was denied on February 12th, a month earlier, due to concerns with his kidney. Last year (February 2018 during his last annual aesthetic teeth cleaning), he was diagnosed with Stage I kidney disease. It naturally has progressed (as one might expect) in the year since we last officially checked it.
We were thrilled to get Rufus’ teeth cleaning done by our good and gifted friend and canine dental specialist Robert Furman in Santa Barbara. We originally were going to have to wait til April, but thankfully due to a cancellation we got in sooner. #Grateful
Unfortunately when we examined Rufus’ mouth we found a growth on his lip line. Dr. Furman happily removed it, but being safe we sent it in for a biopsy. And one week later, like he promised, Dr. Furman called us with the results. Unfortunately, the results weren’t good. The growth was melanoma. Dr. Furman believes he got it all out, but one can never be sure.
According to the PetMD…
Oral melanomas also have a high chance of metastasizing (spreading) to other parts of the body. The most common locations for melanoma to spread are lymph nodes within the head and neck, and the lungs. Certain breeds are more likely to develop melanoma tumors than others, including poodles, dachshunds, Scottish terriers, and golden retrievers.
There’s a vaccine we can give Rufus, but it’s pretty expensive. At this time we remain undecided how we’ll proceed. What measure(s) we will or won’t take.
So here’s our dilemma. Rufus has had a great life. He’s nearly 15 (August 21, 2019); some dogs don’t ever get that many years so we’re grateful for each one. Rufus is a very well-travelled hound. Some humans would be lucky to have lived the life of this happy hound dog. ❤ We want to ensure Rufus’ last days, months or years are comfortable and posh, but I want him to have the freedom to leave this plane and transition to the next when he’s ready, whenever that day comes.
We’re not pessimists (by any means). But I do consider us to be realists. We hope Rufus will prove us wrong and be around for many more years to come – nothing would make be happier, but realistically his time (and our time together) is limited. I think Rufus’ time here is coming to an end. We’re in the final stretch of road certainly, we just don’t know how much road is left (yet). I personally believe we have between 6 and 24 months left. That’s my intuition. We personally have to acknowledge this possibility so we can prepare emotionally, so I can prepare emotionally. ❤
Now my question to YOU reading this Sunday share / Rufus update is… IF you knew the end was near(ish), how would you spend the final days / months / years with your best canine companion!??! #InquiringMindsWantToKnow
I’ve been asking myself that question a lot lately. And our family has decided that I won’t travel without Rufus, which means my overall travel this year will be significantly less. I’m going to stay home and stay close to our boy, because my singular clear commitment to Rufus during this uncertain time is that I want to be here with him. I want to be here when he takes his last breath; I know if I wasn’t that would be huge regret for me.
I also want to take a lot more pictures. I want to go on more adventures together. I want visit more (if not all) SoCal beaches, dog parks, resume our regular neighbor walks, take hikes, etc. I want to spoil Rufus. I want ensure Rufus’ last days / months / year are pretty spectacular. And I’m happy to bring you all along for the ride, if you want come.
I also welcome your suggestions and thoughts. Rufus is my first dog as an adult and this all is a first for me. I’ve have helped to raise four precious puppies, but this will be my first time to lose one of those puppies I raised. So although I consider myself a very well read person on all things dachshund, I will be experiencing this first hand for the first time. ❤ And for me, it helps to talk about it candidly with our community.
Okay friends. Although this share may seem a little gloom and doom, in truth we’re all doing pretty good under the circumstances. We remain of good cheer and continue to enjoy our daily cuddles, naps and sunbathing poolside. Proof is in the pictures. We’re celebrating each day as a gift, and encourage you to do the same. If you got them, hug them and spoil them, because why else have them if you’re not. 🙂
Thanks for the continued support and love friends. Have a wonderful week. ❤ We’ll share again soon.
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