I'm a SURVIVOR!
I'm so glad to see there are other 3 legged dogs out there just like me!
I am 6 years old and am part Rottweiler and part Black Lab.
My mom calls me a Labweiler
(because I look like a rotti, but act like a lab).
I met my mom in June 2003 when I was about 8 weeks old.
I am her first dog, and boy do I have her wrapped around my little paw!
I love playing fetch, going to the park, swimming,
playing with other dogs, and riding in the car!
I've been quite spoiled by my mom and my grandparents.
Mom used to let me sleep in the bed with her, until I got too big.
My nana and papaw help my mom take really good care of me.
Papaw even built me a doghouse so I have shade from the sun
and shelter from the rain.
The best part is, it's big enough for me AND my best pal, Zoe.
We are like brother and sister.
She is 1 month younger than me, and we have grown up together.
On March 18, 2009, my mom took me to the vet,
because my front paw was hurting
and I was limping and yelping out in pain.
We just thought I had broken or sprained something.
The vet did some x-rays
and when they got the results, they told my mom,
"Well, we have some news, and it's not good."
Mom and I were thinking, "How bad could it be?"
We never dreamed in a million years it would be so serious.
The vet said I had Osteosarcoma (bone cancer)
and probably had 6 months to live.
Osteosarcoma is a very aggressive,
very painful type of cancer
that attacks the bones and then organs of most large breed dogs.
Based on the x-ray, the vet wasn't 100% certain
and wanted to consult with another vet before confirming.
They sent us home and my mom was so upset.
In fact, I don't know if I had ever seen her cry before that day!
My mom has a childhood friend who is also a vet,
so she called her to see what our options were.
Dr. English said she'd be happy to take a look at me
and offer a 2nd opinion, so that's what we did.
Dr. English wasn't convinced it was bone cancer either,
so she ran some other tests.
After multiple tests and a very painful biopsy,
they confirmed it was bone cancer.
Dr. English advised my mom to amputate my leg.
After a lot of research, that is what my mom decided to do,
so that I wouldn't be in any more pain.
On April 7, 2009 (3 days after my 6th birthday),
Dr. Haig (Dr. English's boss) removed my leg.
For my size (130 lbs), I did miraculously well.
I was already walking on my own within 24 hours of the surgery.
After a couple of days, I developed an infection
that really slowed down my healing process.
I ended up staying in the doggy hospital for 15 days
(most dogs stay 3-5) and my sweet mommy came to see me
every day (except Sundays, because the hospital was closed).
After a while, nana, papaw, my uncle, some of mom's friends,
and even Zoe came to visit me.
That made me feel so much better.
On April 22, 2009, I finally got to come home!
The infection I developed made a lot of the skin
around my wound die and Dr. Haig had to scrape a lot of it out,
so I came home with a big open wound.
Mom and nana had to clean me twice a day
and apply ointment and bandages.
It was hard work and I hated it,
but I know they were just trying to help me get all better.
Since then, I have had a few bumps in the road,
but have continued to get better.
I am back to a normal life, for the most part.
I still gallop around the yard and play fetch as best I can.
I've had a really tough year, but I'm doing as well as I can be,
considering my circumstances.
I was diagnosed in March and given 6 months to live.
As of June 6, 2009, the cancer had not yet started spreading
(in most cases there would be 40-50 tumors, by then).
Dr. Haig told my mom in October,
"For all practical purposes, Bailey should no longer be with us."
Although, shortly after that, Dr. Haig found the start
of some small metastases on my lungs.
I have still beaten the odds, and hope to continue to do so,
because I'm a FIGHTER!
On October 24, 2009, I supported my mom's friend
(who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer)
in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.
My mom is driving me crazy with her camera
and taking a million pictures,
but I realize our time together is limited,
so she needs those memories to hang onto.
I have had a GREAT life, and will continue to enjoy what's left of it.
I hope my fellow tripods do the same!
Barbara & Bailey Wallace
Thursday October 29, 2009