I was actually in bed and realized if I did not post this I would have hell to pay. From the other day:
So, Walter had his evaluation for the clinical trial I’d mentioned. He was not a good candidate, since he has issues in basically all of his joints and this trial only treats one. The good news is that he’s an excellent candidate for the stem cell trial, which will treat multiple joints. The even better news is that even if he winds up in the placebo group, at the end of the trial he’ll get the same treatment as the control group. I can also keep him on the Rimadyl, so yay.
Before the trial starts he’ll get a full work up; blood, x-rays of his hips, elbows and knees, etc. Today they diagnosed him with a moderate case of laryngeal paralysis. It’s not a super huge thing, but it was another reason he was not a good candidate for the injections trial, as that required anesthesia and laryngeal paralysis complicates matters. It also explains the excessive panting and his lack of barking. It won’t be an issue this winter, but next summer he’ll have to be kept cool and quiet so he doesn’t overheat. They also kind of want to poke the tumors and biopsy them. The vet in charge examined him and afterward looked him in the eyes and said, “Is there anything normal about you?” Walter wagged his tail.
He had stress shedding, and an increasingly pungent odor about him that I also attribute to stress (like a wet dog rolled around in popcorn). It’s a good thing I have an appointment with the groomer on Saturday, as I’m pretty sure my dinner guests on Sunday won’t find his particular fragrance an enhancement to their appetite.
And from today:
Took Walter to the groomer and he got a bath to get rid of the aforementioned order. His coat, despite some bare patches, actually looks really thick and glossy where it’s fullest, so I have hopes it will fill in nicely.
I’m scheduling him with a canine massage therapist. She specializes in sporting and agility dogs, but also works with a lot of geriatric dogs, so I think she’ll be a really good fit for Walter.
He’s making it up the stairs every night now, and sacks out on one of his orthopedic beds next to mine. I’ve caught Julian sleeping next to him, but I’m never fast enough with my phone to get a picture.
In short, he’s doing good. He’s on track for the stem cell trial, is getting bloodwork done this weekend to make sure the Rimadyl isn’t fucking him up, and will probably get a full body massage twice a month.
I don’t get a full body massage twice a month, the lucky bastard.
No One You Know
This sounds like great news! I sure wouldn’t mind full body massage either (riffles through Contacts list)
That must be a lot of money.
Yay, Walter! And, Cole, it sounds like he’s getting better health care than I do, too.
Good news to hear before bed, thanks.
Mingobat f/k/a Karen in GA
Professional grooming, massages and stem cells would do me good.
Walter is extraordinary. As are you, debit, and you Cole – also too.
Dear Debit — those stem cell studies are pretty amazing. Back in early 2013, when our Siamese was 20 going on 21, she was diagnosed with renal disease — which is to be expected in all cats when they get very old. In humans, our cardiovascular system will eventually wear out; in cats, it’s their renal system because they’re evolved for desert climates. Given that we knew we were going to lose her eventually, and knowing that she was incredibly chill with anybody who gave her attention, and didn’t mind being in the car if she could drive/navigate, we signed her up for a stem cell study at CSU. Three months later, she had 50% of her renal function back, which is plenty for a cat to function with, and she maintained it until her death last year (of an unrelated brain event – stroke or aneurysm) at age 23. She had a wonderful, long life and those stem cells gave her both more years and a significantly better quality of life during those years. I cannot say enough good things about university veterinary programs, especially those that are advancing stem cell research. Not only are they improving the life and health of our four-footed companions, those studies do eventually become human medicine, too. So thank you, Debit, and thank you Walter, for advancing science.
Good boy, Walter and good job, Debit. I want one of those massage thingies, pls.
Great news. Walter is one very lucky doggie. Thanks Deb(it) and John.
Tumors? What tumors? I must have missed an update.
Up the stairs every night! Yay!
Thanks for the update. So happy that Walter found a home that loves him so.
Debit and Cole: You are good people. ???
Just a quick “Huzzah!” And seconding of what rikyrah said.
after all he’s been threw
walter is adored
So appreciate the Waltergrams. With all the crap surrounding the run up to 11/8, Walter’s journey is pure therapy of the best kind. Debit & Cole, thanks so much.
Ps: so glad Walter can go up the stairs to be sleep with his pack.
Love to think of Walter getting massages. Who’s a good doggie?
Good to hear about the stem cell trial.
Debit, I’m so pleased that you adopted Walter. He’s a lucky pup.
We can learn so much from our dogs. Despite their tribulations, they greet us with wags and kisses.
Thank you for sharing John. Some good news, and our four legged overlords help make the daily mayhem we live with somewhat tolerable
Lovely post and video. It’s always great to hear about Walter.
So happy for Walter. He hit the doggy lottery. Thanks to debit and Cole.
Thank you debit and John for sharing. We have a family saying that all our cats live in kitty heaven with us – where their every need and want are anticipated and met. Walter is obviously in doggy heaven, and it is such a great thing after his previous situation.
Debit, the love and care with which you are showering Walter isn’t just changing his world into one of widening beauty, it is doing the same for ours. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
@Pogonip: When John took Walter to his vet they discovered several tumors along his rib cage and diagnosed them as the harmless, fatty kind dogs can get as they age. My vet concurred, but this is the U of M vet clinic, aka the Mayo Clinic for pets. If they still want to biopsy at our next visit I’ll give the green light, but I’ve been watching them and they don’t seem to have grown.
I’m so glad Walter has found a place to be loved and cared for. It’s great that he can get upstairs to sleep with all of you. He’s truly home.
May myriad blessing be bestowed on all those involved in bringing Walter back to life. He looks so shiny and alert. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Makes me smile to think of him sleeping in your room, family style, with his pal Julian beside him. He’s truly a wonder dog! And, you–debit, and JC–are angels on earth, pure and simple. It’s amazing to contemplate just how quickly and dramatically life turned around for him once John Cole walked through that door. Never fails to get me and makes me instantly more loving to all those who have to deal with me — that’s for sure.
@debit: So like a Lipoma for humans. Debit, you are giving that old, abused dog a good life, finally. You are a credit to the human race.
Where’s the signup sheet for going to live with debit? Is it a permanent link under Quick Links?
I lost a three year old cat named Walter to FIP this year. I love these updates. You guys really put the human in “humane”.
These updates make me so happy. So grateful for everything you’ve done for this wonderful old guy. Yay Walter
To paraphrase Charlie Pierce: “Is this a good day for Walter news? It’s always a good day for Walter news!”
Thanks for the update!
J R in WV
Thanks for the updates, and for the great care and attention Walter and his mates are getting. Hope the Vets don’t get too intrusive for the old guy!
A wonderful story with a happy ending, who could ask for more?
Keep up the good work!
J R in WV
PS at first I felt sad for Walter that he was leaving the green rolling hills of West Virginia, but I guess it’s working out well for him. Maybe the long van ride with Tim was a useful transition from hell to heaven?
I always read the updates and I’m so happy for Walter. Debit and John are such good people. Thanks.
@Mark: I’m so sorry.
Thank God for these Walter update posts. I’ve been stressing myself beyond belief over this election. I finally stopped myself and went digging for the Walter update you promised last night and it’s exactly what I needed.
La Caterina (Mrs. Johannes)
What everyone else said. Thanks so much Cole & Debit and all the Walter contributors and caregivers. The updates are a real stress reliever in these crazy days.
I live in south Florida. Walter should be a snow bird. With his orthopedic problems, he will fit right in.
@RoonieRoo: Me 2. Besides, Walter is smarter than trump or his disgusting family. Walter is also smarter than Mike Pence’s poop.