I want to first thank those of you who came by and wished Loki a happy 5th birthday. He loved his ⅔ pound steak burger from Hardyâ€™s and savored every bite. The folks at the clinic adored the card and sent a card in return, and the cake went over well as expected. The picture, included with the card, was drawn by one of his doctors (Click to Biggify).
Anyway, today has not gone very well. Loki has been limping for a couple of weeks now. Thus far we had been treating it with an anti-inflammatory medication, but that had stopped working so well. We took him in today to be assessed and to get films (x-rays) of his leg.
The vet had him walk around for a bit and she and the staff had pinpointed that it was his right elbow, so they took films of that. They called me shortly before lunch saying that he was ready to go home and that coming in right away would allow the doctor more time to speak with me.
In short, the films were bad. His elbow looks destroyed. The cause could be from one of many different things: congenital condition, septic arthritis, benign or malignant cancer. Currently, he is being treated for septic arthritisâ€¦what we hope it is. He has had immunosuppressant therapy for the lymphosarcoma and is on consistent steroids, so itâ€™s the more likely possibility at this time.
They took synovial fluid from his joint to be analyzed and his films are being sent to a radiologist. If either of those things indicates that this could be cancerous, he will get yet another biopsy. Ugh.
Hereâ€™s the bad partâ€¦even if it is septic arthritis, the damage to his joint is permanent. This dog has an incredible tolerance for pain, or should I say, he fakes health really well. He is all about us and wants to make us happy, so he doesnâ€™t show his pain. I told the doc that before, but I donâ€™t think she believed me until today. She said that as she was sticking the needle into his joint to get the fluid, you could hear crunching and the obvious sound of the needle hitting bone and he didnâ€™t even flinch. They all referred to him as an angel because no other dogs have responded that way. What Iâ€™m trying to get to, is that he is in some pretty serious pain right now even though he doesnâ€™t appear to be in any.
While weâ€™re hoping that this is septic arthritis and that he responds well to treatment, we all have a bad feeling about this one. We have a really, really bad feeling.
So, some good doggy thoughts and prayers would be appreciated at this time. We want him to get better so badly. But if he doesnâ€™t weâ€™re going to need some prayers for strength to ease his pain. Weâ€™re pretty sure that God is insistent about getting that guard dog sooner than we want to give him up.