Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Since you asked

Or even if you didn't...

Emma: She is doing great! We give her extra love everyday and that seems to be just what the doctor ordered. Well not really considering our love is FREE and the what the doctor ordered was $3000.00.

Car Shopping: Still looking. I just want the car to be in my parking spot and not have to deal with all the shopping. And especially all the car sales men, give it up Jack. Armen, so far so good.

Presidential Bid: I'm still running. Don't forget to vote for me.

What else? How come when I'm in the car I can think of 100 million things to post but now that I'm here, nothing.

This weekend my sister and her family are coming for a visit. I really should be getting the house into visitor shape, but I don't wanna.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

June brides

We went to a wedding on a yacht yesterday. It was a beautiful wedding and we spent a fantastic afternoon chatting with old friends. We cruised around the Newport Beach Harbor, the sun was bright and the sky a perfect blue.

Self portrait

Monday, June 11, 2007

Little Baby Girl

I thought that I'd let you know what has been going on with Emma.

The weekend we returned from Michigan we noticed that she just wasn't herself. Not really eating and some excessive drooling. Matt took her to the vet last Tuesday and they kept her all day and did some tests. We were not sure if the loaf of bread she ate on the prior Saturday was causing her some gastric issues. They planned to do some blood tests and x-rays.

I got a call telling me that the x-rays were normal and that we could pick her up at 6:15. The blood results would be in at 6.

We got there and the doctor told us that the x-rays seem normal, the urine and most of her blood work was also normal.

Except for the liver tests. He believes that she has liver disease. They only way to determine what kind and how bad is with an ultrasound and a guided biopsy. He said she is a very sick dog. She vomited bile at 5:30 despite having fasted all day. She had an injection of pepcid and received some fluids.

He recommended that we keep Emma overnight and she receive a bleeding time and IV fluid. The following day she would have the ultrasound and if necessary they'd put her under for the biopsy. Then she would need to stay for a few days and recover.

The results of the biopsy/ultrasound would tell the MD what type of liver disease she has, hepatitis, chronic, inflammatory... Without the tests he cannot treat her.

Then we get the estimate. One for the preferred treatment and one that is bare bones. $2500 for the full deal and $1100 + $940 for the lesser. Either way we were looking at $3000+ for the first day including $700 we had spend for the day at the vet. Plus min. of $450 per day for 3 days after the biopsy.

They left us to discuss things and we were really balking at spending another $2000+ on an old pet. I'm still recovering from Chase-er-meow-meow just 5 months ago.

We decided we needed to think about putting her to sleep. The MD said he would not disagree with that decision, especially since even after knowing what type of liver issue she has her quality and term of life might only be 6 months.

So we decided to put her to sleep last Tuesday night.

Then the MD recommended that we think about it overnight and take her home. She isn't in pain and we could at least spend the night loving her and saying goodbye. Then we could put her down on Wednesday.

We took her home. She ate her kibble, ate treats, cuddled with us on the couch and in bed. And she seems 100% normal and fine.

We decided we would not to do anything. We plan to add some chicken breast to her diet to increase her protein and maybe some other stuff to keep her healthy and happy.

Until she shows us some sort of visible decline, we're going to just love her.

We just didn't know what to think. Maybe the blood tests were abnormal or a fluke or if she really has some sort of liver issue.

On Wednesday evening we went back to the vet to pick up some medication as recommended by the Vet.

She received the first round of pills beginning Wednesday night.

Thursday I came home to find her lying on the bed soaked in urine. Not good and for sure not normal.

Friday she peed in the living room. And the same on Saturday. She peed without any sense of urgency, no asking to go out. She was just standing there peeing.

I researched online to see if any of the new meds could be causing this side effect. If it was a side effect. We called Jeanne, a nurse, and asked her. Nothing should link the two together. She had been drinking more water, which of course would cause more need to pee, but not like she was doing.

We decided to stop the pills altogether, she hasn't peed in the house since Saturday morning. She is running around at the park, eating and drinking, peeing outside and pooping. Normal dog stuff. She still barks at the television and at the little pain in the ass dog across the way. She is 100% Emma.

Today I called the vet so that I could tell them I wasn't going to do a f/u and to get copies of the lab work and x-ray.

The tech was pretty rude and said he'd check with the doctor to see if he would ok the release of the labs. I questioned this practice and asked that they be ready by this time tomorrow.

I vowed right then to never go back to them.

Then the Dr. called me back. He had lots of questions and seemed really concerned. He was pleased to find Emma doing well. He hoped that I would go for a second op. and he also really hoped that I'd go to a specialist. I said that I've split Emma's care between them and another vet and as soon as I said the other vets name he got excited. He said to please follow up with him after I go for follow up blood tests.

He did concede that there was possible lab error. I know for sure after spending 4 years working at the lab, that it is a valid possibility. I can't remember exactly the stability of the blood for liver tests, but as soon as I see the names it will come back to me.

I told him about the peeing in the house and how it seemed like she didn't even have any urgency and why I thought there was a correlation between the meds and her peeing. He semi agreed, but only because of the timing and not because of any of the meds. He also asked that I bring them in to make sure there was no medication error.

I feel better about the vet. Not good enough to bring her back. I said that the soonest I would consider going to the other vet is next Tuesday. He said that is fine given her current condition.

So until next week I hope to put any additional worry and concern out of my mind.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Margaritas vs. Street Fair

Summer is almost here! Not that it feels like summer, it hasn’t been above 75 degrees in weeks. I am excited for all the kiddies to be out of school, my commute is always about 10 minutes less during the summer.

As I posted yesterday we had decided to go to the Los Feliz street festival. We were a block from the subway and noticed that the new grocery store was open! We just had to take a detour and check out what the store has to offer. It was a shiny and new, the produce all piled up in an artistic manner, and a lovely floor free of grime and dirt.

Halibut was on sale, $14.99/pound for the filets. About $10 less than Whole Foods and Gelson’s! We are walking back to the store tonight to pick up some halibut for dinner. I asked Matt if I should prepare it differently than lightly breaded and pan fried in butter/olive oil. He thinks I have a good thing going with the current method and why mess with a good thing. Yum!

After shopping at the grocery store we decided that rather than going to the street fair we’d rather have a margarita. For whatever reason, full bars are hard to find in our immediate neighborhood. By immediate, I mean within a 5 minute walk. Beer and wine are plentiful, just not liquor, save for a hard core gay bar or two. We decided to walk to the lone Mexican restaurant, which we thought was about 4 or 5 blocks away. About a mile or so later we were still walking and vowing to enjoy our margarita’s and take a taxi home. As we continued to walk block upon block, finally we could see the sign for Karaoke and Margaritas. Fortunately, the karaoke wasn’t happening and we drank our salty rimmed margaritas and ate chips with guac and salsa.

We did walk home. I promised that the walk home would do us well and the sun was shining and we had a buzzy spring to our step.

I’m not sure if the margarita was a better decision than the street fair. But we for sure got more exercise walking the 4 miles round trip for the drinks than the few blocks we would have walked at the fest.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Back to normal

We spent a week in Michigan. The weather was mostly great, it only rained a few of the days. We were able to see lots of family and old friends.

Today we are taking the subway to a street fair.

I'm out of the blogging habit, I hope to make a triumph return ASAP.