Friday, December 11, 2015

With a heavy heart

It is with a heavy heart that I post that Patton has passed away.  Not because of his hips, he at 9 1/2 years was having no problem getting around. If you are confronted with you puppy having this was the best money I ever spent.  You would never have known he had hip dysplasia even at the end.

In the last year his kidneys began failing.  In late summer we noticed his vision was also beginning to go.  A trip to the vet last week sent him off to an animal Ophthalmologist confirming that he did not have cataracts but detached retinas and high blood pressure.  They did a full Heme work up on Patton and found that he was very Anemic and had very low platelet count, they suggested he see an internal medicine special list to find out what was going on immediately.

Off to Internal Medicine we went on 12/8/15.  Ultra sound and x-rays found nothing.  No tumors, no internal bleeding.  It was determined that he had ITP, an autoimmune disease that has the spleen attacking his red platelets.  A round of chemo was ordered to see if they could stimulate his bone marrow to make more platelets.  Unfortunately, it didn't work.  He began bleeding and bruising Wednesday evening.  He was bottoming out.  Thursday saw some slight improvement (very small at that)  but now he was so anemic, so the decision was made to let Patton go.  We said our goodbyes and he went very peacefully.  Not an easy thing to do for anyone, it was very hard to leave him when he looked so at peace.

Patton was the most amazing dog I have ever owned.  I loved him like crazy, he was my buddy, my companion, my baby.  He was so smart...sometimes too smart for his own good.  He learned to open cabinets and doors. When it was bed time he would open the door to upstairs and wait for me until I came up.  If I was too slow, he would start barking for me to hurry up.  He loved to go hiking and camping with us.  He would get so excited to go anywhere in the car with us, didn't matter where we were going as long as he was with us.

There is a huge whole in my heart,  and the tears won't stop falling. I miss him like crazy but it was the best for him. I love you Digger Bear and remember Friends don't eat Friends.  RIP Patton.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

It's been a few years(well ok a lot of years)

Just a quick update.  Patton will be turning 8 this year! Amazing it has been 7 years since his surgeries. I received a phone call yesterday from the University of Wisconsin Vet center.  They are conducting a study on the long term effects of this surgery on the dogs.  They want to include Patton in the study! How cool is that?!  So on February 28 he will go back in and they will do an exam to see how things are doing.  I told them that it was worth every penny to have the surgery done.  At almost 8 years, he still runs around like a puppy.   If you didn't know what he has been through, you would never think there was ever an issue.  He's bouncy and still full of energy.  Chasing balls and rabbits is still a favorite pastime.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Hope all are doing well

Patton loves the snow
Originally uploaded by sufras.
Sorry for the long dry spell on posting. Life just gets so hectic.

I have received many responses from folks regarding this blog on how it has helped them with their own dogs. I am so glad that I have been able to help. It is such a scary time and I know when I started on this little odyssey there were only medical sites to go to that weren't all that helpful. Ok, so I know what the surgery is, but what does it all mean as far as recovery, and the future for my dog. So if I have made things easier, I am so happy. And if you are just starting on this adventure, it really does get better and quickly.

Patton has spent the winter tearing around the snow and climbing the snow banks around the house(thanks to the 80+inches of snow this winter). You would honestly never know he had two hip surgeries last winter. (Glad it was last winter and not this. Way too much snow)

Patton and I would like to give a belated Happy Birthday to Dewey! I am so glad to hear you are doing so well. Many more years of chasing bunnies and birds for you!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Patton plays in the snow V.2007

Patton plays in the snow 2007
Originally uploaded by sufras.
Winter has arrived once again to Wisconsin and Patton gets to enjoy two of his favorite things outside. Eating snow/ice chunks and chasing tennis balls. With temperatures in the 20's and lower, his tennis balls have become big ice balls which is fine with him. Two for the price of one.

With the anniversary of his first surgery fast approaching(Dec 9th), it was great to watch him run around like a nut in the snow since he was unable to last year. Yes, what a difference a year makes.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

One Year Ago...

patton bathtime
Originally uploaded by sufras.
As Thanksgiving approached this past week, the stark reminder of where we were a year ago came to mind. It is hard to imagine that our odyssey began then. It seems like a lifetime ago now. All the fear and unknowing of what kind of life my 7 month old puppy would have in the future. Would he be able to run with us, hike in the woods, and well, just be a dog?

One of the many things I gave thanks for this past Thanksgiving was, "Yes, my dog is going to be ok " and there are many that I owe a huge thanks to. I know I have done this in the past, but as I watched him run around the yard on Thanksgiving I thought of everyone who took part in making his life what it is now. If you were to see Patton today you would never in a million years know what he has been through. He tears around the yard like a demon in search of squirrels and rabbits, and the occasional bird that flies too close. He will chase tennis balls until his tongue drags on the ground and he passes out from exhaustion. Yup he is just another goofy Golden Retriever/lab. Lovable and mischievous.

As the one year anniversary of his first surgery approaches I want to give thanks to all those that made Patton's life what it should be. Dr. Gooch at the Animal Health Center for always taking care of the "golden child" from the day we brought him home to the many years to come. As well as everyone else there for taking such good care of him. I have never had a dog that LOVES to go to the vet/kennel. He loves his visits with you guys.

Thanks to everyone at the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital at the University of Wisconsin-Madison for taking such great care of Patton while he was staying with you. The phone calls before and after surgeries to keep us posted on how he was doing were great and made a scary situation a lot more bearable. You guys are the best. A HUGE thanks to Drs. Manley and Schaefer for doing such a great job on Patton's TPOs. And last but certainly not least, Courtney Arnoldy, Patton's physical therapist who got him moving again. Our family thanks all of you for doing what you do.

About the picture of Patton you see, this was taken after a week of camping this past summer. After swimming in lakes, rivers and rolling around in dirt for a week he definitely needed a bath. He wasn't too happy with me, but if you notice how brown the water is, a certain necessity

From our family to everyone, we hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Patton at Lake Superior, Duluth Minn.

Patton enjoying two of his favorite things, playing fetch with a stick and swimming. Could it get any better for a dog?

Hope all had a great summer

I am sorry that I have not been keeping up with Patton's blog this summer, been very busy between work and, well, playing with Patton.

So what has Patton been up to.... A lot of camping for one thing. Somehow a quest of sorts started for Patton. How many different bodies of water could he enjoy this summer. He hit quite a few, from Lake Superior to the Wisconsin River. I think he enjoyed Lake Superior the most, deep enough for him to actually swim in. The only river he really wanted to get in that he couldn't was the mighty Mississippi. We could not find a good access point for him.

He has also enjoyed playing fetch with his toys this summer. We bought a "Chuckit" for him(enables you to pick up and throw tennis balls instead of picking up wet yucky tennis balls with your hands). He will chase tennis balls and bring them to you for hours. A nice way to wear out a dog I do say. Eventually he gives up and heads for the back door as if saying he surrenders. After all he has been through watching him bound after tennis balls like nothing happened is a GREAT feeling.

Recently, he has also discovered that he can turn on the water himself in the bathtub. One night while folding laundry upstairs I heard the water running and thought one of my sons had turned it on for him.(We do this frequently otherwise he paws at the tub until we do) As I walked into the bathroom I noticed my bath scrunchie was shredded a little. I asked my son why he had let him do that he said that he hadn't been in the bathroom and he thought that I had turned on the water for Patton. Apparently, Patton found if he pulled the scrunchie hard enough he could turn the water on. I think I have to find a new hanging place in the shower..

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Patton playing in his pool

Patton playing in his pool
Originally uploaded by sufras.
So it was really, really hot outside a while back and my youngest son insisted that Patton needed a pool. So the "golden" child has his own personal swimming pool. He LOVES his pool. First place he heads when it is filled, he doesn't lay in it, or sit in it....He stands in it. He will play fetch with you and get whatever you throw, but it will end up in the pool before he gives it to you. When it is upside down(when not in use) and is filled with some rain...that's ok, he's stand on the pool in the collected rain water.

Patton and his tennis ball
Originally uploaded by sufras.

Patton was playing with a puppy friend of his, a chocolate lab puppy, and they would chase each other around the yard. Patton would grab the ball from Max and promptly run and stand in Max's pool. Now Max will swim in a lake, but wants nothing to do with his pool. So Patton would take the balls into the pool and play keep away from Max. Quite humorous I might add. That and them chasing each other around a camper and Patton deciding that chasing Max is nuts and turns around and meets Max head on in order to take the ball that way. Ah the advantages of being older and wiser.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Patton takes a bath

Patton takes a bath
Originally uploaded by sufras.
Ever since Patton's physical therapy sessions and his swim in a lake, he can't seem to get enough water. One night while I was upstairs folding laundry I heard him scratching on something. When I went to find him, he was no where to be found until I finally checked the bathroom and lo and behold, he was in the tub scratching on the tub. I turned the water on and he stayed in there for about half an hour splashing around.

So now it is routine, as soon as I go up stairs he heads for the tub and waits for me to turn on the water. Some days he just drinks from the spigot, other times he splashes around. But it is definitely HIS tub now.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Patton has a seat

Patton has a seat
Originally uploaded by sufras.
Amazingly enough, he knows he is not allowed up on the furniture at home. Camping? It's all fair game.