About a week before I arrived, Max had surgery to remove some tumours and a few days after I got here, we found out that those were malignant tumours. Long story short, after several rounds of testings and ultrasounds, we decided that the best course of action was to send Max for radiation therapy because the Vet couldn’t remove all the bad stuff.
Max is a loving and super friendly Black Lab that T adopted from a shelter about 4 years ago. He was originally named Droopy and T paid for his eyelid surgery to correct his you-guessed-it droopy eyelids. Max is not just a dog. Max is family. To be precise, T calls Max his ‘fursborn” child.
So early on Monday morning, we went off to rent a car to take Max to the California Veterinary Specialists in Carlsbad, California. We picked up the car from ENTERPRISE Rent-A-Car (this time we rented a black FORD Focus for under $35 a day including taxes) and I drove it home, following behind T’s Corvette. By 8.30am, we’ve packed Max into the car and were headed to California. The drive was long and Max had no idea where we were taking him. It broke my heart to see him wagging his tail happily and I was teary-eyed almost all the way. Our appointment was for 3pm but because we’ve never taken this journey, we left early and got there by 1.30pm (even with 2 pitstops where Max got out to stretch his legs, drink water and do his business).
Max will be boarding in the facility for the next 25 days or so to receive radiation treatment. When the 2 nurses came to take him away, he was confused and maybe a little scared. He kept trying to jump into T’s lap and pawed him. We had to walk a few steps with him so that he would budge. I was fighting to hold back my tears. One of the nurses saw my red eyes and tried to reassure me he’ll be fine and well taken care of. Instead, she herself started crying and said that they will email to update us regularly. T feels that it’s a good sign that the nurse cried because that means she knows how we feel and they will be gentle with Max.
This is definitely emotionally and financially draining. There was no question that for T, saving Max was of utmost importance and putting him down was a last resort. So, we’re now trying to figure out where all this money will come from and are trying to sell some of our stuff to pay for everything. When it rains, it pours. But I think we’ll be okay because we’re together, you know? We’re told that Max will have a 85% chance of full recovery and now that I’m here, T won’t have to take the dreary drive across the desert alone. We will be visiting him every weekend till he’s ready to come home.