Ami (Amadeus) 7/7/08 - 12/23/18
First, I apologize for not being on here more frequently. I was on here so much during Ami's early years, and then life got in the way and I wasn't able to come back and spend time here. It's a community I miss so much, and one that's been so supportive with knowledge, great listeners to funny stories, help when there's questions or uncertainty, and overall... one that's been an integral part of my journey as a dobe lover.
Everything happened so fast and it's been really hard to share or talk about. She was a part of mine and mu husband's lives for 10 years, from our 20s right into our 30s. She grew with us. She picked up our funny habits. She had the most personality out of any pup I've known. She's road tripped across country with us multiple times as we moved, from city to city and new home to new home. The house is really quiet without her here, and it's been really hard.
On the Thursday before Christmas, she started throwing up and acting very out of character. She's done this in the past and it passed within a few hours if she ate grass or had an upset stomach, so we made her some rice and kept an eye on her. After a short while she was clearly struggling to walk and something was very wrong, so we rushed her to the emergency vet at midnight. They immediately checked for bloat, and we were relieved it wasn't that. But what we saw was heart stopping.
When they showed us the Xrays, she had a gigantic mass on her spleen that was pushing it upwards and completely displacing it. There was some fluid in her stomach so they feared that it started a slow rupture. They gave us the option to have emergency surgery that night. They said we could wait, but it was bound to fully rupture and she would be in a much more dangerous spot at that point. They said it would be about a 12-24 hour recovery and most of the time it's an easy one for a dog that's in good health like her. We knew it was risky at her age, but it was a ticking time bomb inside of her and also had no clue if it was cancer, and were going to have it biopsied.
We were lucky that she had surgery. The mass was the size of a head of lettuce, and she had ruptured about a liter of blood by the time she was under. What they (and we/our vet) didn't realize was that her liver was in horrible shape and close to failing. We had a blood panel a few months prior and her liver values were slightly high, so we starting Denamarin and were about to go in for a follow up to re-check her values. That obviously changed her ability to recover how they had originally thought.
After surgery, she needed multiple blood transfusions and her red blood cell count was very low. They said that her back leg was dragging a bit, and it seemed to have some nerve damage. The following night was the most restless night we had, with our ringers on and continually waiting for updates. We went in to see her, to see if we can help her eat or get an appetite, but she was struggling to even move. They had to sling her back end to get her to walk out, and we couldn't even recognize the look in her eyes anymore. It was clear she wasn't OK.
The next set of details continue to be painful, but she stayed another night, and they said they didn't think she would make it out of the hospital at this point. She was really struggling to recover, and if we brought her home, it would essentially be hospice until we made the decision that they, and we, knew had to be made. We couldn't bear the thought of losing her while she was in a strange hospital and we weren't there.
We brought her home, made her a bed on the floor of blankets, and wrapped her in her favorite one. We laid with her all night, until we had someone scheduled to come Sunday morning. It was excruciating knowing we couldn't do anything for her, but we told her how good of a girl she was, and that we loved her from when we brought her home, until they came the next morning.
She didn't even care that a stranger was here, or what they were doing. She kept floating in and out of consciousness, and I can't stop thinking about the look in her eyes. It hurts to have her here one day, full of life and energy, and then having to watch her close her eyes for the last time a few short days later. She put her paw over my arm and held it the majority of the night, still trying to comfort me like she was so good at doing, even though she's the one who was suffering. Her love was unconditional, and I only hope she knows how much she was loved. I thought I was getting better until the emergency hospital sent us surprise flowers a week later, in memory of her. And then the tears started to flow again.
I'm trying to not let the guilt of the decision to have surgery haunt me, and I'm trying to stop replaying all of the options in my head. For now, we've left her bed in her favorite sun spot so it shines down on it every morning. I like to think she's still sitting there and soaking up the sun.
She was our whole life and I feel like a part of my identity has been wiped away. I know this feeling will pass, but the emptiness is so much to bear sometimes. If it's OK, I'd love to leave you with some of my favorite pictures of her below. The last pictures I shared on here were when she was maybe 2 or 3 years old. I may have to add another post, because of the file limit.
Last edited by Amadeus Von W; 01-06-2019 at 02:32 PM.