“A Very Mumford Christmas” – A Recap

Happy Fourth Day of Christmas, everyone!

(Yes, I sure do celebrate all 12 days of Christmas. Just because the day, itself, is over, doesn’t mean I can’t keep eating Christmas cookies, watching Christmas movies, listening to Christmas music, and enjoying my lights!)

Mumford and I had a very nice weekend in Orange County. He’s always the hit of any event, of course – and my 18 month old niece and he are completely in love with each other.

I was so, so thankful that Mumford was here for the holidays, and tried to appreciate every moment. I’m so happy he could be here and that he seems happy and comfortable.

Yesterday, Mumford’s other best friend, Derek, arrived back home from Arizona. Sometimes I joke that Mumford is so happy when the three of us are together, I can picture him singing “we’re the three best friends that anyone could have!” I think he loves when his little “family” is together. Luna probably enjoyed our time in Orange County, leaving her alone.

Mumford’s also increasingly tolerant of Luna – although sometimes jealous when she curls up on my lap. She has taken to trying to eat his leftover food (something I consider Karma after he was continually eating HER food when she first arrived.) I know he hates it, but, he’s taken to leaving her alone and allowing her to snack on his (prescription, way too expensive, killing the bank right now) food. He is just the best.

We are wishing you all a wonderful Christmas and New Year and hope that your time was filled with family and fuzzy snuggles!

Happy Christmas Eve Eve!

Happy Christmas Eve Eve!

I’m happy to report that Mumford’s limp is pretty much gone today. Yay!

We’ve been hanging out most of this rainy day, trying to make it through cheesy holiday movies on Netflix. The one I’ve gotten the furthest so far is “The 12 Dates of Christmas.” It’s produced by ABC Family (**now Freeform**) so had the most promise, and actually came recommended from a friend… as far as you CAN recommend this type of movie.

Also, his prescription food is damn expensive! I feel for those of you pet parents who feed prescription food full time. A small bag of his I/D food cost the same amount as his normal large bag (of an also, expensive fancy food)… and only lasted two weeks. Sigh.

Thanks to my dear friend Victoria, who sent me some prints of photos I had taken of Mumford and me two days after his diagnosis, I now have some framed photos of him/us. That along with the painting I did of him, and the artwork friends have given me… my apartment does look like a shrine-to-Mumford. I’m okay with that.

He’s doing okay today, which is great. I’m so thankful he’s here for the holidays. It’s hard talking about next year, and being realistic that he **most likely** won’t be around. I was chatting with the boyfriend, who went home for Christmas, and his mom since I stayed behind and Mumford was one of the primary reasons, and it was suggested that next year I can go. And while that would be fun, the reality behind the **why** is tough. So, again, just trying to cherish every minute with my buddy I can.

I’m so thankful for all the supportive friends during this time who continually call, text, and check up on how he and I are doing. I’ve also gotten some fantastic advice for going through this process. As it all starts to play out, I’ll be sure to post it here.

I really hope this blog can help other pet “parents” who are facing similar situations, so please be sure to share with your friends.

I know this was really a non-update, but I think it’s important to chronicle how he’s doing and check in daily, so thanks for reading. 🙂

I’ll leave you now with some snaps I took a couple minutes ago of Mumford with me, just because. 🙂 Happy Christmas Eve Eve!

Day to Day

Caring for a dog with a terminal illness is weird.

Some days, he’s completely his old self and everything seems to be going great.

Some days, he’s a bit slower and I’m second guessing every pant, movement, and wince.

Today’s one of those second guessing days. Yesterday wasn’t; people were asking how he was doing, and I would reply “great as ever,” joking that he doesn’t know he’s sick – we’re the ones who know.

We’re pretty confident his cancer is lower intestine/colon, and now he’s on Hills I/D which has greatly been helping, along with a pain medication and a steroid. Despite the tumor continuing to grow, his behavior is pretty normal (when he’s not peeing every two hours from the steroid making him thirsty.)

It’s all things that are manageable; I have pee pads in the apartment (luckily hardwood floors), and I’ve lifted up all the floor rugs. And, just in case of any little misses, I’m being pretty diligent about giving the apartment a good mopping weekly.

Increasingly often, he’s been waking me up in the middle of the night panting. He usually licks my face to wake me up, and I snuggle up and roll over to go back to sleep, but that’s starting to increase as I suspect the pain may be bothering him at night.

Derek and I went to Disneyland last night when he was off work. We’d been trying to go see the Christmas decorations for weeks. Mumford and I chilled all day, and he seemed great. I took him outside to pee, and we had our usual routine of me taking his leash off him, and us running down the hall back to the apartment (I’m sure, to the disdain of my neighbors.) It was fun and felt like old times – I even commented how well he did.

When we got inside, he stood by the front door, and I noticed he wasn’t putting any weight on his front right paw, which has a medium-sized tumor on the back of his leg (which has been growing, but nothing obstructive.) I tried calling him, and he limped quite noticeably. He couldn’t jump back onto the bed, so I picked him up. He’s limped from being tired before, but usually after long walks. I examined his paw and figured he may have just strained himself.

Derek and I went to Disneyland and didn’t get home until about 1:30 am – six hours later. When I get home, Mumford’s always laying next to the front door. Last night, he was still on the bed, exactly where I left him.

The hard thing for me is figuring out the line between overreacting and being in denial. I don’t want him to be in pain or suffer, and I want to give him the longest (comfortable) life possible. I wish he could just **tell** me how he feels. It’s a tough guessing game.

A Party For a Dog

A couple weekends ago, we had a “Happy Trails, Mumford!” party for him at Lake Hollywood Park. This was a great opportunity just before the business of the holidays to gather his friends while he still feels well enough to play and visit.

Lake Hollywood Park is an unofficial dog park in Los Angeles (in that, owners bring their dogs and have them run off leash until the park rangers come and start citing them.) It’s so much nicer than a *real* dog park, and the location under the Hollywood sign is prime. We had a great time with a bunch of food, and lots of new puppy friends.

Thanks to my friends who took the great photos below!

Hello!

Oh my goodness… it’s been a long (long) time since I’ve blogged. Probably about three years to be exact. **Where does the time go??**

To those of you who somehow stumbled on here, I’m Katie – and I had the idea to start this blog for my dog, Mumford, in his last months with us. Mumford is the greatest. He’s also got cancer, and his collective family of me, his many friends, and admirers, are trying to make his end of life as awesome as possible. I thought I’d document it along the way for those who may also go through life loving a terminally ill pet.

I thought I’d document it along the way for those who may also go through life loving a terminally ill pet.

But it can’t **all** be sad, right? So, I’ll probably end up just blogging about life and life with Mumford along the way. I hope you stick around, and have fun with us.

Happy Trails, Mumford!