Amber seems to be trying to pee a little more often, with less and less actually coming out, which is how it goes. I watch her every day to see that she can still pee. I'm sorry for the tmi. At home she can lie (I almost wrote "lay", Morris) around on the couch or in the grass for long periods of time without having to pee but on a hike I think the running motion makes her feel like she has to go more often. It is painful for me to watch but doesn't seem to bother her at all.
After taking her to a specialist last week and after way too much deliberation and backing and forthing on the subject we have decided to take her for chemotherapy treatments starting next week. I have always said that I would not give a pet chemo. I didn't really have a reason, I guess I thought it was prolonging their life just for the sake of their owner, not for the good of the dog. It sounds like dogs handle it much better than humans, so we are really hoping it doesn't have any ill side affects for her. If it does I would not continue with the treatments. It may shrink the tumor and it may slow it down, so we will hope for that. It feels good to have decided.
I have no good excuse for why it has taken this long to get a diagnosis and start her treatment. I have been feeling VERY guilty. When the biopsy forceps first broke, during the first biopsy, I should have taken her right away to another clinic to get it done. I talked with my vet about doing that and he said we should try one more test, that bladder tumor antigen test, and if it came back positive then he would recommend getting the biopsy done as soon as possible, if it came back negative then he said I could relax for a little and get the biopsy done at a later date. The test was new to my vet, he hadn't used it before but felt confident in the results. Then it came back negative! I have to admit I didn't ACTUALLY think it would turn out to be cancer, not MY dog! So when we got the negative antigen test I DID relax.
I feel like crawling in a hole and never coming out again when I think of the last few months. I can't believe she got that MACH title only two months ago. I wish the agility gods would take back their stupid title and give me back my healthy dog. It's very hard to feel proud of it.
I don't mean to be such a bummer but I felt the need to write this down.
Today I took Amber to a Rally trial that I had entered a while back. I haven't worked that hard on intermittent rewards with her and it turned out to be a lot harder than I thought doing a whole course with no treats! You'd think all that agility would transfer over to Rally in her mind but it didn't seem to. With treats she can do everything pretty well! Even right before going in to the ring this morning she was very attentive since I had cheese and salmon treats. In the ring she was a little slow and didn't seem to love it all that much. Still, she came away with a score of 94 and a 1st place. The judge said she lost points for lagging behind and a few slow responses. It was our first ever attempt at Rally-O.