Second Chemo tx and Elgin’s ongoing progress

As you can see, Elgin is taking it easy after his second round of chemo. He continues to astound us and the neighborhood.  He is now pulling me around the block on our browndog walks.  He is so robust, that I have to look for physical signs that he’s wearing himself out… he blushes pink around his eyes and his tongue curls up when he pants (he always pants really hard, so I can’t use that as an indicator). He also starts to “sink” when he’s fatigued… he hops, but his back end gets lower with each hop, like he’s in quicksand.  After my workout at the gym yesterday, I can easily imagine how his leg must be burning!

This week the weather here was incredibly hot, over 100 on a couple of days, and so after our walks, I broke out his pool and let him lounge in it for a while. I think it must have felt funny on his incision because he hung his bum out over the side while he was laying in it.  It was pretty funny looking.

So after the second round (which took 5 hours!) he had no loss of appetite, no lethargy, and just no signs of side effects at all.  Elgin is daily returning to all of his previous mannerisms… plus a few new ones.  While he can hop up the stairs on his own, If Gary is around he will put his front paws on the step, and pause, while looking back over his shoulder with his eyes only-not turning his head, to wait for Gary to pick up his back end and put it on the step, and they make it up the stairs in this way. You can’t tell me dogs are dumb.  This one’s got it all figured out!

He sleeps with us on our bed (good reason to upgrade from a queen to a king) and instead of laying nicely parallel between us, he has begun to lay perpendicular at the end of the bed… I imagine if someone took an aerial photo, we’d look like the pie symbol. What takes the irritation (almost) out of this, is that he lays on his leg-less side.  He’s begun doing this little by little, now, after 5 weeks post-amputation.  We imagine his body was pretty tired of laying on just one side all the time. The bed must be soft enough that the pressure doesn’t hurt so much on that hip socket.

Now he’s trying it more on other, harder surfaces.  He never lays long on that side, but it’s good to see that he is apparently not in ANY pain anymore.

He is a little aprehensive when we leave him alone, and this manifests in him licking.  He has always licked his front legs when he’s nervous, and now he licks his hip/incision too.  But it’s not obsessive. Thankfully.   Poor guy, after being babysat attentively for 5 weeks, he’s uneasy when he’s left alone.  But he’s getting over it.

One last picture; here he is, in his favorite sleeping position on the stairs.  I always joked that it looked like he had a bad wreck on the stairs, but now that his leg is missing, it’s even funnier! (Yes, I’ve been accused of having a warped sense of humor… I guess it’s true. 🙂

11 thoughts on “Second Chemo tx and Elgin’s ongoing progress”

  1. Ha ha ha. that pose at the bottom of the stairs, is fabulous. We call that the ‘pornstar” pose. sorry not PC, but still funny. The bum out of the pool is also very funny. (I wonder what he is thinking??) Oh, if only we knew!!!

    He looks so strong, and so very happy. I am glad for the updates. Fenway has started (31 days post op) to lay on his right side as well. Never on the floor or hard surfaces, only on the softest of beds or occasionally on the lawn (the grass is a little high, so its extra cushy).

    I have to thank you Ann, you were one of the first people I intercated with when finding Tripawds community, and your help and information made our decision to amputate a little easier. If a big dude like Elgin can do it, so can Fenway.
    Thanks again.

    Keep up the good work Elgin!!!
    Fenway, sister Macy, and Mama Sue

  2. Maggie also lost her left rear leg. Eventually that became her preferred side to sit and lay on. She even developed a move where she would sort of fall into a sit to change directions on slippery surfaces, and she landed right on her little nub.
    The back end sag is how I moderated Mag’s activity too. She had always been a bit of a lazy pug and would sit down on walks so I couldn’t use her sitting as a guide. But if she started sinking or trembling I could tell she was truly tired.
    Good to hear Elgin is tolerating his chemo so well.

    Karen and the pugapalooza

    1. How interesting that she preferred that side! I’ll watch and see what happens with Elgin.

  3. Dear Fenway and family,
    Glad to hear from you! I’m so very very glad that you found help in our posts. Amputation is such an emotional, gut-wrenching decision. We found alot of guidance browsing the posts and stories on this site too. Hope Fenway continues to improve and get back to his old, energetic self, with no signs of the cancer.

  4. Glad to hear Elgin is doing so well!! Remember that chemo is cumulative, so don’t get too worried if he gets a little tired, or loses his appetite as the treatments go on. Our Max did 6 rounds of carboplatin. He did great on treatments 1 – 4, but had a few issues with 5 & 6. Lethargy, diarrhea, and loss of appetite. Other than those last 2 treatments, our guy pretty much breezed through chemo. I hope that is the case for your boy too! Be sure to let him know he’s got a lot of fans, and everyone is thinking of him and wishing him well!!

    1. Dear Maximutt,
      Thank you for the head’s up! I either didn’t know it was cumulative, or forgot. I’m glad you mentioned it because it would have been disheartening to all of a sudden see him show these signs, after tolerating it so well. That’s why I love this site, lots of good info gets shared!

  5. Elgin, those photos of you just crack us up! I love that first one especially.

    I never realized your tail was so long!

Comments are closed.