Sam has an enlarged spleen we discovered over a year ago. All the blood work and tests came back clean, so there was not much we could do about it. Lately, he has been having some bowel troubles. I took him to the vet, and we found out he has lost over 10 pounds in the last year. Nothing in his diet or exercise or routine has changed, so the weight loss is a little concerning.
Anyway, the vet said she suspect there is slow-growing cancer in his abdomen. She said we can do all sorts of tests and ultrasound to find out what it is, but we need to also consider what the implications are if we did find something. At Sam’s age, the vet said, she recommends quality of life rather than quantity.
Sitting there in the vet office, listening to her trying to be sensitive with the way she gives me the news, with my faithful pal Sam sitting next to me, I all of a sudden lost all control and started bawling. We adopted Sam just over 7 years ago. His family was moving back to the UK, and they were giving away two dogs and two cats. We met Sam and fell in love with him. Cliff and I were so excited to welcome Sam to our family. We took him everywhere we went. In fact, for many years, Cliff took Sam to work with him everyday.
It is easy to take Sam for granted. He is the most faithful companion. He spends hours in the winter time warming my feet while I sit on the couch. If I ever had a bad day, I just need to take one look at his earnest and goofy face, and I would forget all my troubles. When I am sad, his big brown eyes makes everything better. He never complained when we started spending less time with him because Joshua and Savanna arrived. So it’s only natural to assume that he’s going to be there for me forever.
I kept sobbing in the vet office. Sam puts his head on my knee, looking up at me with his big brown eyes.
We spent the rest of the time talking about pain control options. I paid the bill, listened half heartedly to the instructions on giving the meds, and took Sam home.
We don’t know how much longer we’ll have Sam. It could be 6 months, and it could be another 3 years. All I found out at the appointment is just a confirmation that we don’t have forever with Sam.