Day: September 6, 2008

Ouzo at the vet again

By Thursday, Ouzo’s breathing had become very labored. Throughout the night Thursday night/Friday morning he didn’t sleep at all because he could barely lay down comfortably. I spent most of the night trying to get him comfortable enough to sleep. He couldn’t put his head on the ground, presumably because of the fluid in his chest, so I gave him a bunch of pillows to rest his head on. That worked for maybe an hour and he slept a little (and so did I). Friday morning we took him to the vet to have his chest cavity drained of fluid. That took over three hours and they drained more than one liter of fluid.

He’s better today and can move around more easily than he could this week. But he still barely eats and I have to carry him up and down the stairs. And he still has a lot of trouble sitting or laying down. His breathing seems to be less labored, but he still seems to struggle to breathe.

We’ve come to the conclusion that we aren’t going to do another chemo treatment. He doesn’t respond well to chemo — he vomited and had diarrhea all week and was very lethargic. And given that he will need to have fluid drained more frequently, which is rough on him too, we feel like we’re prolonging his life but it’s not a very good quality of life for him. So unless he has a miraculous recovery, we’re going to have to let him go sometime in the next week.

The vet, by the way, has doctors and assistants that are knowledgeable and have good bed-side manners, but the customer service is lousy. We got to the vet by 10am, they took Ouzo almost immediately and told us that they’d call us when he’s ready. The time estimate was an hour. So we went to a mall and then to Starbucks for lunch. An hour-and-a-half later we hadn’t yet heard from them so we called. They said they had _just_ started the draining process. We asked how much longer it’d be and were told that it’d be done “shortly” and they suggested that we come back to the vet and he’d be ready to go by the time we got there. Ten minutes later we arrived back at the vet and, again, they said he’d be ready “shortly”. Another hour-and-a-half later, he was out. I took Ouzo and Hudson out to the car while Gay got the discharge papers and to pay the bill. Twenty minutes later, Gay was still waiting for the discharge papers and the bill! You’d think they were really busy, but they weren’t. They always have about 7 people hanging out behind the desk doing little or nothing. Eventually, Gay just walked out and told them to call her when they want us to pay. The place has “mixed reviews”: from other people.