Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Another Operation

Darcy sporting bling in the
form of Troll Beads - just for 
fun. Copyright © 2013 Mark Kelly.
Being an owner of a pet is a wonderful thing, especially when the pet concerned reciprocates love and affection and is like one of the family. But then there are hard decisions that have to be made which are upsetting for owner and pet alike, especially when it involves the pet's health, and potential quality of life.

So it goes with our lovely girl, Darcy. Two more potential mast cell growths have been discovered inside her left ear, and a possible third on her gum lining between two back teeth.

Yesterday we discussed with the vet the best way to deal with these issues. The least and simplest would be to aspirate a sample from each lump with a fine needle. But, as the vet pointed out, these have been known to be inaccurate and to lead to a false diagnosis. The downfall to this approach is that should the samples prove 'positive', then poor Darcy would have to return again for further surgery, and of course, stress.

The other option is to excise the areas, send off the removed parts for screening and wait, which means the areas cannot be stitched and will be left as open wounds to heal. Basically the dog's ear is like a skin sandwich with a layer of cartilage between the skin layers, so we will be able to see this layer of cartilage.

This is the option we have chosen for Darcy. Our only concern is that should the two removed pieces show to be cancerous, then the vet has said the total removal of Darcy's ear (or pinna, as the floppy part of a dog's ear is anatomically termed) is then likely. My wife has just come off the phone to me, upset and crying, as Darcy is really her baby, and I have to be calm and positive for all of us, even when my wife is describing to me how Darcy wouldn't stop trembling at the vets and trying to pull towards the exit.

I can't help but have a little weep for our little Darcy, but I'm alone, so it's ok.


Tim Shorts said...

I hope everything goes well of Darcy. As a long time dog owner I can relate to your situation.

Maria Zannini said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Darcy. We've gone through it too.

We also beat mast cell. We went the chemo route the first time because it had settled in her lymph node. We also modified her diet to a high protein/high fat diet because I learned that cancer grows more rapidly on carbs. This is when I started cooking for all the dogs. Eggs, chicken, beef, liver and veggies.

I hope with all my heart that Darcy recovers soon.

Elise Fallson said...

Oh no. I was hoping Darcy would be in the clear after the last post you wrote about her. )-: We get so attached to our animal companions. It's heartbreaking when they get sick and don't understand what's going on around them. Hope Darcy recovers soon.

Mark K said...

Thank you all - Darcy is home now, looking a bit sad and sorry for herself, but she still has an ear attached :)

Seeing as no stitches were involved, things look a bit bloody, but we just have to keep an eye on her and make sure it stays clean.

Thank you once again, from all of us, especially Darcy.

Deborah Walker said...

Ah, poor Darcy. I hope it going to be good news.