Thursday, February 21, 2013

A lot of help!

AP here:
For a few weeks Tonka and I were on a roller coaster ride. I was scheduled for a couple of procedures that would leave me incapable of lifting him for 7-10 days. So while I fretted and stressed about what to do with him I then made matters worse by watching some youtube videos of my surgery. Sometimes knowledge is not such a good thing. Little did I know while I was totally freaking out the Tonka support team quietly assembled in the background and started planning out the week for us.

Diana and Chris presented me with a calendar for the week with days and times marked off as to when they would be at the house to take care of him. They are two very smart people - they knew if they asked if I needed help I would just say "no", so they didn't ask, they just stepped in and took care of him.
Caitlin came every day and twice on the day of the first procedure. Carol volunteered to come up every morning at 4:45 and get him up and moved since that is his normal routine. Robin and Donna would come by at 7:00 to get him in his wheels so he could eat and then go for a little walk. Carol would come back at 5 or 6 to get him in his wheels again so he could eat and walk if Caitlin or the others couldn't be there and CM had late night shift. Chris even worked it out so he could get to underwater treadmill at least one of the weeks. Tonka's Aunt Nancy and Aunt Denise were messaging me every day to check on us and Lisa and Laura were my (can't sleep) nightly support team on twitter.

A week before surgery Tonka started squinting his eyes and panting like crazy. He was in obvious distress and so I rushed him to GAVH for a late night emergency appointment. His Aunt Gina met us there for moral support knowing that I was already stretched a little thin. His temperature was elevated and so was his heart rate and he reacted painfully when Dr. Gerity moved his head up and down. Since he was painful they took a set of x-rays to see what was up. Naturally being Tonka his pictures came back beautiful and normal so a prescription for muscle relaxers and pain killers was prescribed. He was already on an anti-fungal for a skin problem so I was a little leery about giving him too much medicine since he never does well with medicine. Next he started having to urinate every 1/2 hour and his urine had hardly any color to it. He started consuming 3 quarts of water at a time and so I took him back to the vet and they ran a urinalysis, did an ultrasound and blood work
Shaved Ultrasound Belly
The urine showed nothing but the ultrasound revealed a small mass that should not be there. The mass most likely had nothing to do with his symptoms unless it is an adrenal gland tumor. His blood work came back with an elevated red blood cell count so an adrenal gland tumor although a stretch was a possibility. I took him back to get his blood pressure checked since that would also be one more thing to add to the theory. The techs came out to the truck to test it and that way he would not have to get up and into the wheels and possibly raise his BP. Once again Tonka in true Tonka fashion had a normal reading. A normal BP still did not rule out a tumor but I was not ready to go down the exploratory surgery road with him. Instead I started treating the pain as if his rib was possibly out by propping a folded towel under his ribs when he would lie down. Caitlin and I started icing more of the rib area and I worked on massaging the area at night. I took him off the anti-fungal medication and started limiting his water intake to see if he could concentrate his urine. Once I took him off the meds he started to improve and his urine started to darken up. It seems it was 2 issues that happened to coincide at the same time. His pain level went down with what we were doing with his rib and the excessive thirst and urination resolved once the medication was out of his system. The issue of the small mass is still to be resolved but right now he and I are both doing well and we are going to leave it at that for now. Knowing Tonka that small mass could be a third kidney he was trying to grow - he is after all my genetic mutant :-)

I cannot possibly ever thank everyone that helped out for the two weeks and I am sure I have left some people out of this post. Please know that Tonka and I love you all very much and are extremely grateful.


liparifam said...

Goodness, it takes a village sometimes, doesn't it? What a blessing to have so many great friends!

Tonka said...

liparifam - Yes, and he is such a creature of routine and it was nice to be able to keep those routines in place as to not stress him further. They are all such wonderful people.

Ray the Blind Dog said...

Wow. You have such great friends. I sure hope you and the Tonk are doing better and both of you are up and around soon.
jean and ray

Tina said...

Team Tonka Rocks! Hope you're both feeling better. Liam sends his love.

Tonka said...

Tina - yes they do. Tonka is much improved -like nothing ever happened -my mystery boy. Hugs to you and the pack and a big kiss on the nose for my leapy lee.

Tonka said...

Jean and Ray - We are very blessed to have such wonderful people in our lives. Give Mr. Ray a belly rub for me please.