August Break: Day 28

I woke up this morning sad and scared. Today was the first time I walked both dogs on my own since Dexter’s “bloody scare.” I’m worried he’ll reverse sneeze himself into another bloody nose, and that this time it might be worse, that it will lead directly to him getting sicker and this will all happen too fast. Eric offered to go with me on our walk, knew I was nervous, but we both understood that I needed to do it by myself. Everything was fine, and Eric’s note waiting for me on the kitchen counter when we got back home was a reminder that I am loved, I am brave, and I am not alone.

A talk with the vet yesterday only confirmed that while we don’t have a definitive diagnosis, all of the evidence supports the presence of nasal cancer, so we’ll accept it as such, treat what we can, do what is reasonable and right for Dexter, and be happily surprised if we end up being wrong.

We could do more testing and cause Dexter more suffering to know for sure, if we planned on treating him with radiation, but we don’t, not at the proposed cost–both financially and for Dexter it’s just not worth it, as the treatment costs the animal a serious decrease in quality of life and the people thousands of dollars, while not buying them much more time. The most telling thing was the vet said “if it was my dog, I wouldn’t do the radiation.”

This cancer typically runs its course in about three months, although in a limited number of cases it’s anywhere from 6-12 months. For now, all we can do is be aware, pay attention, help him when we can, love him as much as we can, and when it gets worse, gets bad enough, let him go.

So I’ll be brave and open-hearted, showing up with love even when I’m terrified, even as my heart is breaking. It’s all there ever is, all I’ve got.

10 thoughts on “August Break: Day 28

  1. LT

    So sorry to hear that you’ve not gotten good news. Jasper’s spirit whispers to you, though, and she says to remember that when given 6 months, she lived 18.

    1. jillsalahub Post author

      Thanks, LT. Whatever time we’ve got, I’m happy with it. That dude has had a really good life, and we’ve had a really good time together. I’ll be sad to see it end, but it always does, one way or another.

  2. Courtney Putnam

    Jill, I feel so close to you and your family right now. Our cat Mountie had a nasal carcinoma, but we weren’t sure for absolute certainty (nothing showed it) and we didn’t want him going through more invasive tests or radiation either. We just loved him up, gave him herbs, acupuncture, treats, and super-snuggles. And so I just want to wrap you up and hold you and tell you that amazing realizations, moments, and insights happen despite this chaos, as you know. Dexter will surprise you (in his case, his HEALTH might surprise you!). You will surprise yourself. You will (and already do) feel such deep, deep love you will think it’s not possible to have more and then you do.

    I am with you with all of this, dear friend. Someday we will meet in person and I will get to tell you in my very own live voice what a brave, humane, deeply empathic, loving soul you are. What a lucky family to have you in it.

    1. jillsalahub Post author

      I don’t know how I missed the this was the cancer Mountie had too, although I’m not sure if you ever said what kind it was. Isn’t it weird how that can make me feel better, that your story had a sad ending but offers me such strength? Mountie and Dexter are a lot alike, I think–the sweetest, strongest, grayest pets. I can’t wait for the day when we can talk to each other, maybe laugh and cry a little too, in our very own live voices, because I know it will happen. You have been such a gift to me.

  3. Eydie


    Yes, you are brave and Dexter is so very LOVED. Creating positive thoughts and energy for Dexter may allow him to surprise you and the vets. Energy medicine can be amazing. I’ve seen many positive results.

    I hope you find the links I sent you to be helpful and encouraging.

    I’m sending you and Dexter an abundance of love and healing light.


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