Rusty, can You Get HBO with that Thing?

Well, the visit to the vet wasn't exactly ideal. I didn't walk out of there feeling very good. Rusty didn't walk out at all - he had to be carried. Not that he can't walk at all, but you can tell it's painful and it's not too hard to pick him up (at least for a grown man, it's a bit hard for me - he's almost 1/2 my weight).

Basically, I was on the right track with the antibiotics. Actually, it's the only track. If this doesn't clear up with twice-daily paw bathing with antibacterial shampoo and oral antibiotics, it's either a systemic fungal infection or tumors/cancer. The vet said there are no treatment options for the latter - at least he didn't recommend them because it would be "too much suffering" (as he put it - his English is so-so, I believe he is Korean) for a dog that is 12-14 years old. I would tend to agree. But it's a bummer because he is not "senile", he is still very mentally with it. He can see and hear ok (I mean, not perfectly, but he's old), he's got a steel trap bladder, and a happy disposition. As much as he has driven me crazy this year, the idea of putting him down is sad. Sure, when I found the trash strewn all over the first floor, and he was pooping out wrappers from getting into the Halloween candy, the thought - "when is he going to buy the farm" - crossed my mind. Now that it is a possibility, I am cursing that I even thought it, hoping that karma isn't biting me in the ass for having the thought. But I don't want him to suffer, so we will see how the next week or two go.

This morning, one paw looked a little better, the other didn't really look better, maybe marginally, but it still nasty, still some gross oozing. I'm not sure if the small improvement is from the antibiotics or the spaceman/satellite dish he has on his head that is stopping him from licking. Maybe it's both. It's day two of meds so I am thinking tomorrow it will really start kicking in. Once the infection is under control though, he may still have the swelling/lumps and then we'll have to go from there.


  1. Is Rusty a certain spice-named dog from your childhood? One dog that, perhaps, loved to hump blankets with abandon on the living room couch?

    I didn't know he was still alive! I hope his paw gets better.

  2. Rusty is a new dog - the Savannah replacement - after the "big fight" and we had to give her up, we basically traded her for this old man (I wanted a mellow, old dog. No more drama). We've had him for almost a year.

    My childhood dog would have been 17 now - my parents put him down probably 4 years ago... (he was getting to be a liability since he was starting to bite and stuff).

    I didn't even know I had a comment from you until I looked at my blog! I must have some setting messed up b/c there must be a way to have it email me to tell me...


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