We were home when Sadie passed out. We rushed her to the vet (we left the front door wide open kind of rush).
We thought she was having a reaction to a pain med that I had given her that morning (not super worried at this point).
A bad reaction was not the case. The vet told us that she was bleeding internally.
I had a horrible flashback. 7 years earlier I rushed my baby boy Shamos to the vet..... Internal bleeding caused by ruptured tumors..... We didn't want him to suffer through surgeries and chemo therapy, only to prolong the inevitable.
Shamos did not come home that day...... a part of me died along with him.
So you can imagine what I was thinking and feeling.
We were fortunate enough to be able to help assist the vet and tecs. We kept Sadie calm by talking to her, petting her head, giving her kisses, and holding her front legs.
An ultrasound revealed that the sac around her heart had filled with blood.... it could have stopped her heart completely. Would have if we hadn't been home.
They call it Pericardial effusion. It can happen for no apparent reason and go away after being drained, or it could be caused from a ruptured tumor.
The vet used a scalpel to open her skin up so that a needle could be pushed in to remove the blood. Sadie is such a strong girl, she had no freezing or sedation beforehand as time was of the essence.
This procedure was very risky because the needle could have punctured her heart. The blood was removed without incident. Sadie's heart began to pump normally, allowing some much needed oxygen to be taken into her system.
This was taken after the procedure while we waited for the blood work up.
This is her about an hour later.
The vet told us that Sadie wasn't fit to go home so she referred us to the animal hospital in Guelph, Ontario.
We should have never been referred there because they don't have a cardiologist on staff (she's off on maternity leave).
We were told that they might be able to get a cardiologist....... No guarantees..... and not until Monday at the earliest. Pffft.
We had to leave our baby girl there for monitoring. I was pretty devastated about leaving her there.
In hindsight, I'm glad we did because Sadie needed more medical attention that night. She had some heart trouble that required strong medications.
On Sunday we got the call...... Sadie was stable and they were able to get a cardiologist to see her Monday afternoon. Yippee.
After blood gas testing, three different ultrasounds, a few ECGs, and the cardiologist consultation, we have inconclusive results.
There were no tumors found in her chest or stomach.
They did find that the lining of her stomach was thicker than normal and that she had nodules on her liver and spleen.
They suspect that she has gastric neoplasia (stomach cancer). We opted out of further testing because if it is stomach cancer, there are no effective treatments. No sense putting her through all that if there is no effective course of action.
We were able to bring her home late Monday night.
We are treating her stomach issues with antacids and other stomach coating meds. There is an off-chance that her stomach is inflamed from something other than cancer. So she was put on steroids to help with that.
It's been 9 days and I'm happy to report that Sadie is almost back to her old self. We have to monitor her breathing, eating, and have to restrict her activities.
We understand that she most likely has cancer. We also understand that she will not remain stable forever.
We don't know if she has days, weeks or months........
we are taking one day at a time.
Gotta cherish every minute we have with her.