Sometime in the night I awoke to an odd sound – sort of a ::flapflapflap:: sound. I got up and turned on a light and looked for Mina. She was curled up in a corner of the plastic-covered couch, sleeping. I gave her a kiss and went back to bed.

Around 3:45 a.m. I heard the sound again, got up again, and found Mina on the opposite corner of the couch and that’s when I smelled the pee …

Poor baby had pee on her back, her legs and her tail. I got her off the couch and onto the sheet/blanket/towel-covered floor, and got a warm, soapy washcloth and cleaned her up. I did find some patches of hair missing with those black spots on her skin so we’ll show that to the VIMP vets on Tuesday. I don’t think yeast is supposed to make her hair fall out in spots.

After I cleaned off the plastic couch cover it was nearly 4 a.m. and time to get up so we went outside in the still-pouring rain and Mina had to be coaxed to the grass to pee. She was already half wet so I don’t understand why she balked.

When we got back inside I dried her off and she laid down with her head between her paws and her ears tucked back and looked so … embarrassed. I gave her a little extra almond butter with her pills and tried to assure her that I really don’t mind cleaning up all the pee. I swear she rolled her eyes at me.

s.

Advertisements

I’m not a fan of three-day weekends. I never have plans and I end up at home doing chores. This year, Mina and I are at home and I’m cleaning carpet and cleaning her and mostly just worried about her lack of interest in food. Yes, I know that’s one of the big side effects of the doxorubicin, but she’s so thin her hips are starting to look like a cow’s hips.

Mina also had diarrhea today – the first time since starting chemo. I consulted the notebook I keep of all her discharge orders, CBC results, and other information from her vets, and gave her one 2 mg. tablet of Immodium. Yep, that’s another side effect of the doxorubicin. So far, she’s had ’em all this time around.

Today I took Colleen’s suggestion and bought a packet of brown gravy mix, made it, cooked a fresh batch of Chow Now and some brown rice. I put it all in her bowl and covered it in brown gravy. She ate it up. So, I put more in her bowl, and made a small batch of instant mashed potatoes, which she promptly ignored. Well, she did lick the gravy off the mashed spuds which, IMO, taste like box. I don’t think we need to try those again with Mina, she just doesn’t care for them.

She took a couple of good walks today and seemed pretty perky, but inside the apartment she just sleeps. I’m betting the doxorubicin is kicking her little butt. She’s still incontinent, although not as bad as with the full dose of prednisone. Still, I’m doing lots of laundry and cleaning lots of carpet.

She took her last dose of the mirtazipine today. See the Drugs and Doses tab for her current meds.

Tuesday is the start of her rest week and I’m hoping she’ll feel like eating again and put on the weight she’s losing this week. I’m also hoping there’s an improvement in her spleen and the rest of the enlarged lymph nodes. I just want it to be Tuesday already.

s.

OK, so after reading all about the possible side effects of the various drugs used for Mina’s lymphoma treatments, and Berry the dog’s reactions to some of them, I’m kinda freaked out. The one that’s coming up on Thursday is Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide). Here’s the info from Berry’s Web site:

Cytoxan is an alkylating agent that interferes with the replication of cells. It is a nitrogen mustard and is related to gases used in chemical warfare. Cytoxan is given in pills, which must be handled with extreme care. Cytoxan is an inactive drug in the capsule. It is activated in your dog’s liver, where it is broken down, and then it is broken down again in the bladder. It is extremely important for dogs to receive ample water while on Cytoxan so that the drug wastes can be flushed out of your dog’s organs. Your dog also needs to be let out often to urinate while taking Cytoxan to remove the waste products from his bladder as quickly as possible. Detailed information about Cytoxan is available at: http://www.marvistavet.com/html/body_cyclophosphamide_.html.

From what I read on that link, you can’t even touch these pills with your fingers, which makes me wonder how I’m supposed to give them to Mina? I would assume it’s bad if the pill touches the inside of her mouth? Will a Pill Pocket work? I’ll write down my questions today so I have them for our next visit to VIMP on Thursday.

Also, I may not be entirely out of the chicken cooking business, UNFORTUNATELY. I can’t seem to find a doggie snack for Mina that’s not full of grains and stuff she doesn’t need. She’s not bugging me for snacks now because she eats four to five times a day, but it’d be nice for her Aunties Lori and Sherrie to have something easy to give her. Any ideas? Hints? Suggestions? Today, we have some chicken breast in the fridge that she can have for snacks, but I’m not looking forward to doing that on a regular basis because I’M TIRED OF DISMEMBERING CORPSES IN MY KITCHEN.

So, this morning we were up after about five hours of sleep to go outside in the pouring rain. Gotta hand it to Mina, she’s tough because she managed to do all her business while getting soaked as I stood in the breezeway and watched. She got a nice rub-down with the towel when we got inside, something she particularly enjoys. Pills, food, laundry, carpet spraying, pack lunches, eat breakfast, finish laundry, get ready for work, leave a sad-eyed Mina behind. I wish I could set up a little corner for her here in my office but this is not a non-human animal-friendly workplace.

Generally, she seems better, even broke out the trot for a bit this morning and yesterday. She still sleeps an awful lot, but she did invite me to play a couple of times yesterday but wore out after just a few minutes. She’s still eating enough for three Wheaties, though, and still drinking lots of water but I’ve noticed that’s tapered off. She’ll need to drink tons while taking the Cytoxan, so I may employ Colleen’s sneaky method of getting her elderly pooch, Tosca, to drink by putting a little chicken broth in the water. Eww.

s.

I’ve decided I can balance the amount of water I’m using everyday to wash out all the carpet coverings by not showering.

We got up after four hours of sleep to go outside and then start the laundry. An hour later the “famotidine alarm” went off and we went outside again after I gave her the pill. At 5 a.m. the “prednisone/Tramadol/Dasuquin” alarm went off and I meant to wake up, but somehow didn’t. Mina came to get me around 6:20 a.m. Outside for a potty break, back in for some pills and a hearty breakfast of Chow Now, boiled chicken, and mashed potatoes.

The laundry’s done for the morning and Mina has eaten twice. I’ve cooked more Chow Now and some boneless, skinless carcass and all is sanitized and clean again.

I feel like I’m living in an alternate universe. I see people, I hear from friends every day, but this is such an isolating experience. I lied about not dwelling on the news that the lymphoma may be in her bone marrow.

s.