Saturday, June 6, 2009

Sweet Pea's Final Surgery

Sweet Pea

I know it's been a good while since I posted, but things have been busy around here. My daughter's beloved little Sweet Pea had to have surgery again. She was clear of cancer at her last checkup on April 6, but on Mother's Day, May 12, I discovered another lump on her shoulder. The cancer had returned! That was 3 times in that same exact spot! So, after discussing the pros and cons of this latest surgery, we had to give her another chance. The oncologist said when this type of cancer returns like this, it comes back with a vengeance! So on May 18, her left front leg was amputated, including the shoulder where this cancer seemed to return each time. This was the only way to get rid of the cancerous tumor, so we had no other choice but to go this route at this time. Sweet Pea had her surgery on that Monday and was discharged on Wednesday. I met my daughter there on Tuesday, the day after surgery, over her lunch hour so we could visit Sweet Pea. I have never heard that cat so much as meow her entire 14 years of life, but that day she actually was communicating with my daughter! Everything Tammy said to her, Sweet Pea responded with a little meow. I was absolutely stunned!

She was confined to a 2x4-foot crate for 2 weeks, but I was there every day with her until Tammy got in from work each evening. We let her out of the crate several times a day to walk a little and gain her strength and confidence. Her appetite was unbelievable! She had no problems at all adjusting to 3 legs...none whatsoever! The first thing she did when I got her home was hop into her litterbox and use it! She now gets around as if she had 5 legs...up and down the stairs and jumping up onto the bed and sofa. Just amazing! She is receiving a new kind of chemo for 6 rounds, given at 3-week intervals. This is the same kind Buster has been getting, and his tumor this time disappeared entirely after only 2 treatments! He has just one more round of chemo to go, and Sweet Pea has 5 more left. It doesn't make them sick at all. The only effect it has on them is that can lower their white cell count, so they are usually put on antibiotics to ward off infections. Their blood is checked every week. Sweet Pea cannot receive any more radiation treatments now, as it has to be 2 years between treatments so that the skin can heal thoroughly. But she is going strong once again! She has gained over 2 extra years of life since her first cancer surgery, so we feel it has all been worth it. We would do this for our child, so why not our pet? I have seen many 3-legged dogs getting around like normal, and cats are no different....they adjust so well, and you'd never even know she had just 3 legs to see her running around. The surgeon was very optimistic about her surgery as he removed as much of the surrounding tissue as he possibly could, and the lab report came back that there was no cancer in that surrounding tissue. Maybe this surgery bought her another year or two...who knows? She's going to be a hard one to let go as she has been just the best cat! But we do know know when to do that last thing for her.

My little feral kitty, Miss Cookie. is doing well! She had 6 more ounces of fluid drawn off her chest 2 weeks ago, but the internist added another diuretic called spironolactone, to her meds, and this is the longest she has gone without having to have fluid drawn off. She is due for another cardiac ultrasound this week which will tell us how her little heart is responding to the heart medication. She really is a great little kitty!

As for myself, I have been battling an addiction. I am addicted to Farm Town, a game on Facebook! It is normal for me to stay up all night harvesting others' farms and replanting my own! LOL I am not alone, trust me! There are many others in the chatrooms on Farm Town who speak of their own addictions! It is really fun, and the hours seem to fly by! Before I know it, it is daylight! So, blogging has taken a backseat lately to it...and I apologize...but I do plan to visit all of you this week and catch up a little!


Diane@Diane's Place said...

Glad to hear the kitties are all doing well. Hopefully y'all have found the right combination of drugs for Cookie and she'll make it okay for a long time.

As for your Farmtown addiction, I resemble that remark, lol! ;o)

Love you girl!


Mrs Mom said...

Go Pea and Cookie!!!

Take care up there Miss Nancy- make sure you get SOME rest! ;)

Renie Burghardt said...

Hi Nancy,

Just got home a bit ago from a Sunday outing and saw you had an update.

I am so amazed how well Sweet Pea always does after these surgeries, and even on three legs. She is a real trooper kitty for sure! They all are.

Glad to hear too that Miss Cookie is doing so well.

As for your addiction to Farm Town on Facebook, well, you could be addicted to much worse. Haha. I wish I had more time for Facebook. It is a lot of fun, as is Twitter! Yep, I do Twitter as well. Haha.

I hope you have a good week, Nancy, with low humidity, and well being for you and your fur kids.

Take good care!



Jess said...

Hi good to read a post...and so good to hear about those kitties!!! You are very right about knowing when to do the right things....tell everybody else I said to mind their own biz! LOL Just teasing you.

About farmtown...that's why I stopped going on myspace and why I havent joined facebook...i do not want to be addicted to anything else....I would have no time for anything.

Love ya girl


Happy Sunday and Happy New Week

BClark said...

That is just such super news about the cats. Amazing what can be done for them now.
Farm town eh??, glad it gives you relaxation and fun. You can harvest my crops anytime you want. I always forget them,lol.

Sharon said...

Glad to year that Sweet Pea is getting around so well.
I stay off of Facebook and just try to keep up with blogland. Glad that it gives you fun and relaxation tho.
Have a blessed week

hippo chick said...

I'm so glad she is doing well after her surgery. Most of that is due to the excellent care you and Tammy give her, I'm sure.

Also happy to hear about Miss Cookie.

Glad you blogged again. I miss your updates.

I plan to post about the weekend later today.

Take care of yourself.

~hippo hugs~

Patty said...

Hope all is going well with the kitty's and you. I like playing Farm Town, but I don't think I'm addicted yet, but close. LOL Hope you have a good week.

Diane said...

So happy to hear good things about the kitties! You are a blessing to animals...truly a gift from God.

OMG, I'm getting to love FT more and more...your farm looks great! LOL

I've been SO busy lately too. Seems I'm never home anymore. I'm working extra to cover for vacations, plus trying to do what I can for Steve's dad.

Love ya!

PEA said...

Hellooooo dear Nancy:-)

I'm SO glad to hear that Sweet Pea is doing so well after her last's amazing to see how an animal (and even a human) can adapt to anything, even a missing limb!! I admire you so much for everything you do for all of these sweet kitties, I hate to think what would have happened to them if it wasn't for you caring.

I'm still feeding the mama kitty and her kitten...well it's as big as her now! lol I have stopped trying to get Pet Save to come out and get them, I mean how many times do I have to call them??? They keep telling me to wait for their call whenever they have room...almost a year has gone by now since I first started feeding the mama and calling them. I'm pretty sure she's just recently had another litter so I'm waiting for her to bring them over...they will be trapped and brought in to the SPCA since they'll have a good chance of being adopted because of being small kittens. I won't bring the mama and her older kitten there, though, since I know they'll put them down right away. I'm saving up money to have them both fixed:-)

Ah yes....Farm I needed another addiction! LOL It's such a fun game, though, and like you said, the hours just go by so fast when you're playing it. When I wake up during the night and can't sleep, I go to the Marketplace and find myself a few harvesting jobs! hehe

Sending you big hugs across the miles. Love ya girl!!! xoxoxo

Midlife Mom said...

So glad for the good report on your furry kids! Animals adapt very well to three legs, I have a friend whose dog had cancer in his leg and had to have it removed and he lived a long happy life! You are so decidcated to your kitties, they must feel the love you have for them!

Now what is this Farm Town???? I'll check it out but I can't have another addiction! lol! How do I get on the site? Just checking you know!! :o)

Now you get some rest and take care of yourself Nancy!! xoxox

Merle said...

Dear Nancy ~~ Nice to see an update on the cats. So glad that Sweet Pea
is managing so well with three legs.
I was amazed at how she answered everything Tammy said to her when you both went to visit her after her surgery. Obviously telling how traumatic it had all been. I do hope the cancer does not come back.
I am glad you enjoy Facebook like so many do. I am not one of them and only stay on because I have 9 grandkids on it and various other relatives to keep in touch. I am glad you enjoy the hot humid weather. We are in Winter and it's not too bad yet. Take care, dear Nancy, Love, Merle.

Midlife Mom said...

Haven't had a chance to do Farm Town yet, can hardly keep up with the 'ole blog lately! If you get a chance stop by and see the two new additions to our family!!!!! Actually it's my neice Funsize but I feel like a new grandmother again! heehee! Bet you can guess what she has............

Quilt Works said...

Hope Sweet Pea is doing better - she is a real cutie!

Black Cat said...

Sweet Pea is, yes, a sweetie and you are a great cat mum! I've just sent you a Friend Request on Facebook but it went all wonky so if you get lots fro me, please forgive! In Blogland I am at and my kitties are Alfie and Simba. :)xxx