He has been losing power in his back legs, which is not unusual for a dog his age (over 14). After breakfast, he went to back up in the living room and fell on his back leg. He screamed in pain and could not bear weight on it. I got him to lay down for a bit, wanting to see if a rest and a little time would make a difference. When it didn’t, I gave a call to our vets (The Veterinary Health Center at Kansas State University) and took him in.
Our vet, Dr. N. and our student gave him a thorough exam, then Dr. N. asked one of the Orthopedic Surgeons, Dr. R. to take a look. He agreed that it was most likely a fracture - so we had x-rays taken. The x-rays revealed not only a fracture, but even worse news - something has been eating away at the bone, most likely osteosarcoma - bone cancer. It could have been some sort of aggressive fungus, but either way, it would not be repairable. Our only option other than euthanizing would have been amputation and chemotherapy - at his advanced age, it would have been very tough on him — and would not have given him the quality of life any of us want for him.
Knowing that it would not get better and that he was in a great deal of pain, we made the decision to let him go.
1 JAN 2000 - 17 APR 2014
He was our lover of adventure, a friend to all (cats, bunnies, geese, ducks, deer, etc.), and was one of the best friends his dad and I could ask for. He survived being chained to a tree and half starved for a year and a half before he entered our lives, three cystotomies, and two cancer surgeries. He was so very brave, never complained, and had such a zest for life.
Please do not share this to your blogs. Especially during this most holy of weekends for those of us who are Christians, please don't spread the sadness. Please do NOT take photos off our blog or our Flickr account and post them to your blog. Let Zim's story be told here.
If you'd like to do something to honor him, grab your pups or a friend and go on an adventure. Dream big dreams. Make friends with another species.
|Seriously. You know you want to go!|
God willing, he has been reunited with Stormy, Ammy, and Dave, and the Army of Four are together again.
|Left to right: Zim, Ammy, Dave, and Stormy.|
The Army of Four.
Thank you for celebrating Zim's life with us. We will be taking a short blog break, while we regroup and celebrate Easter.
Celebrate life! Have a blessed Easter.
KZK and MPK
with Cammie and Mags
PS: I would be remiss if I didn't say a few words about the wonderful people at the Veterinary Health Center at KSU. Everyone - our vets, vet techs, students, and the staff/administrators - were and are so supportive, so kind to us and to Zim, and exemplify kind, caring professionals. Many, many thanks to all of them for helping us give ALL of our pups the best quality of life possible. You ALL are the best.