Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Is Cookie Going To Be Another Medical Challenge Or Are We Looking To Closely?

Cookie finished her series of ten underwater treadmill sessions and we took her to the primary vet for evaluation to see what will be our next steps. She seemed doing well, it's been a while I've seen her favor the leg. She wasn't limping even after her weekend farm visits, though I'm still on pins and needles. I suppose I'm going to be that way for a while now.

According to the evaluation, the legs are doing well.

Her primary vet couldn't identify any painful areas and the muscle size is almost back to symmetrical. Seems the therapy worked well.

The swelling on her left ankle is still there and requires further topical treatment but that one never seemed to bother Cookie at all. It is a low movement joint and the injury doesn't really interfere with function.

Cookie's ears also looked good with a regiment of weekly cleaning only.

That's the good news.

However, during this last check-up, her submandibular nodes were enlarged.

I really don't like words like enlarged nodes.

She isn't acting sick but it certainly gives me something else to worry about. Examination of the mouth didn't reveal any issues. Our vet feels it's the immune system's reaction to some irritation and might resolve on its own.

It is true that on Friday I had her veterinary chiropractor check them also and she said that one felt normal size and one just a tiny bit enlarged. To her they were returning to normal from whatever made them angry. I certainly hope so. Meanwhile, I'm watching Cookie like a hawk.

Unless something else happens in the meantime, her vet wants to see her for re-check at the end of the month. Fortunately, that's is going to be next week.

Why am I so worried about the nodes?

Jasmine had them very enlarged once, so much so that it was making her cough. According to Jasmine's vet at the time it was a toss up between an infection and lymphoma. We started antibiotics and, fortunately, the problem resolved and never came back. However, Jasmine also had a fever, Cookie does not.

The most likely reasons for these nodes to be enlarged is a regional infection or neoplasia. That's one of the words I'd like to erase from the dictionary right there. Infection could be in the mouth or in the ears, which both seemed to check out fine. Lymphoma or melanosarcoma are things I don't want to think about.

Really hoping that on the next check-up the nodes will be back to normal and remain that way.

Cookie's primary vet doesn't seem overly worried, so there is some comfort in that. That doesn't mean that it's not going to sit on my brain until I hear that the nodes are normal.

Are they trying to kill me?

I never said those words out loud, even though I was thinking it. My dear friend Dr. Krista did. "If they're not worried, they shouldn't have even told you and just put it in the notes."

I concur. That is one down side of online medical records, though. Even if they just put it in the notes, I'd still see it there anyway. Might as well just discuss it with me.

Am I a jinx for the girls I love?

Let's see ... Cookie has been with us for five months now. She already had a mysterious lameness which turned out being a porcupine quill in her foot that she brought along from her previous life. She almost choked on a dental chew and she managed to find outside and swallow what could potentially had been a pot brownie. She had an ear infection. Then she injured the leg. And now the damn nodes ...

Maybe we're just looking to closely?

Maybe it's just the downside of looking so closely. The harder one looks, the more stuff they find. Maybe, if she wasn't at the vet's to evaluate progress of the leg injury, nobody would know about the nodes and life would go on.

Well, it is what it is. For now, I have something else to mess with my sleep.


Related articles:
From The End Of A Lead Line To Casa Jasmine: Meet Cookie, Our New Adoptee
And So It Begins Again(?) Our First Health-Related Heart Attack With Cookie 
I Didn't Know I Could Fly: Why Cookie Wears A Harness Instead Of A Collar
C.E.T. Oral Hygiene Chews For Dogs CAN Be A Choking Hazzard 
Our First Health-Related Heart Attack With Cookie: The Knee Or The Foot? 
Creative Solutions And An Incidental Product Review
Too Young For Pot: Cookie's Snack With A Side Of Hydrogen Peroxide  
Taming Of The Wild Beast: Cookie's Transition To Civilization  
Staying On Top Of The Ears: Cookie Is Not Impressed  
Putting The Easy Back Into Walking
Cookie's Ears Are Still Not Happy 
The Threat Of The Bulge Is Always Lurking 
Today Is Cookie's Three-Months Adoptoversary  
Cookie Meets The Electric Horse Fence And Her First Chiropractic Adjustment  
Why Examine Your Dog's Vomit? 
Why Is That Leg Still Not Happy? Cookie's Leg Keeps Getting Sore 
Cookie Too Is Insured With Trupanion
Does Being Insured Mean Being Covered? Our First Claim With Trupanion
Is Cookie's Leg Finally Getting Better?


  1. Sometimes knowing all that you know must be a real double edged sword. It's hard to keep calm when you not only know the worst case scenarios, but know the symptoms and the progression and possible treatments. No matter what, Cookie is a lucky girl to have someone who loves her enough to look closely. Even if she has contrived to murder sleep for you.

    1. Yeah ... sometimes I wish I was as ignorant as I used to be. But I'm sure Jasmine taught me all she did for a reason.

      One thing is for sure - Cookie is one happy girl.