Good evening to All.
I hope this post finds you doing well and that you have truly had a Magnificent Monday.
Here, not so much.
Campbell has had what I must say has been the worst day of his life ever, and I don’t hold out a lot of hope for a major improvement.
As many of you know, Campbell will be 12-years old in November. Most of you also know, that Campbell is my now retired Seeing Eye Guide Dog and that he worked for me 8 and ½ of the nearly 10 years he has been with me.
You also may know that he has over the last couple of years dealt with several illnesses brought on by aging, and one of those is Arthritis in his back.
Over the past few months his back issues have been getting worse, and along with this his back legs have been weakening.
We’ve tried various medications and treatments including a combination of pain, and anti-inflammatory medications and acupuncture.
Many of you who have been following our progress for some time now, also know that over the last year Campbell has on top of all the other things listed here, been dealing with cognitive issues.
Over the past few months, I’ve seen an increase in the cognitive issues as well as leg weakening.
Since September 11 we’ve been more aggressively treating the cognitive issues, pain and leg weakening, and we are regrettably coming to the end of what we can do which will keep him comfortable and allow a decent quality of life.
This morning when we went out for his first relief all seemed OK. I was aware he was having a bit of trouble walking but as he got out into the yard he seemed to level out and though his pace was very slow he asked to leave the yard to walk up the walk a bit so he could sniff some of his favorite spots.
We’d not gone far when I realized he was slowing further, and his gait was changing. I quickly turned us around and headed back toward the house. We’d only gone a short way when suddenly, he collapsed at my feet, and rolled onto his side with a yelp of pain. For Campbell to cry out I knew he had to have been hurting as he is normally quite stoic.
Kneeling beside him I attempted to get him up and onto his feet. As I lifted and steadied him his legs began to collapse yet again and as they did, he lost control of his bladder.
Lowering him to the ground I sat for a few moments trying to reach someone on the phone who could help. After a few anxious calls with no luck and knowing I must get him out of the morning air and back into the house, I called 9-11. After listening patiently to my need the dispatcher stated that she would send someone straight away and for me to remain where I was. I didn’t bother to remind the girl that I couldn’t go anywhere thus the reason for my call, instead I thanked her and hung up.
As we sat there on the ground together, I rubbed Campbell’s legs and soon he was trying to stand. After a couple of failed attempts, he was once again on his feet and tugging his leash in an effort to get me to go with him. He was shivering and panting but he was also incredibly determined to see us back to the house.
I walked slowly beside him allowing him to set the pace and soon we were carefully making our way home.
I called the 9-11 dispatcher back and told her we were up and moving and gave her another location according to what my phone read and told her we were going back to our house and gave her my address.
An officer did come by to check with us even though I’d told them they didn’t need to send anyone. He said he was already nearly here when the call came to cancel and he decided to make sure we were OK.
Once we were back inside, cleaned up and calmed down, I began to make his breakfast and while I mixed in the medications my phone rang and it was one of the friends I’d called who is also the lead receptionist at our vet.
I explained what had happened to Campbell and after some discussion on the phone and then via text we decided that since I was scheduled to bring him in today for an acupuncture treatment that it would be a good idea for us to go ahead and come even if a treatment was not done.
We did go and after a thorough exam it was decided that we would try a week’s worth of steroid treatment along with another acupuncture and an added vitamin B 12 shot.
He had the shot and the acupuncture today.
For the next two days I must take him off the anti-inflammatory medication and once that has left his system, we will start the steroids.
We have made the decision that if this does not show a Marked_ Improvement_ that we will assist him to the Rainbow Bridge.
Please folks, do not send me more treatment ideas. Campbell is not happy. He spends most of his days hiding in his crate. Yes, he will come out and say a happy brief hello to visitors and then he’s either back in the corner of the living room on his bed or hidden off in his room.
He shows little interest in anything much more than a short walk in the yard, and if he does go for a longer walk up and down the block, he pays for it mightily for the next two or three days.
I will Not_ Allow_ him to suffer.
I must also say that when he has accidents inside, which he is now doing when trying to stand if I don’t take him out at least every two hours he gets extremely upset.
He has also become very fearful of loud noises. Fireworks, thunderstorms, and loud slamming of doors and car alarms send him into a complete panic. he cannot stand for the TV, Radio, or talking books to be loud and he cannot at all tolerate my talking screen reader’s chatter. I must wear headphones all the time else he starts pacing the floor.
What I would like is for everyone to simply pray for the highest good to be done and for him to not be too uncomfortable over these next few days.
The vet has told me that due to his age and all the other things he has going on along with the back and leg issue that we are at the end of our treatment options.
I have done a considerable amount of reading. I have spoken to The Seeing Eye and I feel that unless this steroid treatment makes a huge difference that to let him go is the very best choice.
One thing I’d like to add is that I believe Campbell is done and that he’d like to be allowed to be free of this.
He has always been extremely easy to medicate. Over the last week or so however, he has become argumentative about taking meds, and tonight when I gave them mixed in his canned food which is soft and very moist, he dug and spit them out into the floor. Had I not been sitting beside him I’d have never known it. I had to force them on him and ladies and gentlemen considering how little good the damned things are doing I will not let that go for long.
My heart is shattered, and I feel as though the world is crashing in around me. This is not a decision I’ve come to lightly.
I appreciate all your love and well-wishes.
I ask you lend your strength during this exceedingly difficult time.
This message will be posted several places so if it is a repeat for you, I apologize.
I will not be dealing with anymore email or Social Media tonight.
Thanks to all.
May Harmony Find You and Blessid Be.
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