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Looks like it will be a bit longer before I can get back to even semi-regularly posting or reading blogs. Though I was able to get a few posts mostly put together over the last couple of weeks and will be (hopefully) finishing those off this weekend.

A lot has happened this last couple of weeks. On the work front, we got our big installation done on time … despite a minor design problem that added two days to the mess. And we managed to do a check-out of the software commanding the motors that move this thing. Since this is all brand new stuff, I was really glad to finally get all that behind us. At least work should be mellow for a few weeks.

In the midst of all the work chaos was the concern that Darling Daughter would have her little Aurora at a time when I really shouldn’t leave the floor. Guess I shouldn’t have worried … while she is technically in labor, things are progressing really slowly. She just wants to be done with all this (a feeling I remember very well) and little Aurora is being stubborn. So we’re still waiting …

As if the stress of all that weren’t bad enough, our pup Cindy is in the midst of a crisis. When we were on vacation in Shasta, our last 5 days or so were consumed with trying to get her through an episode of Idiopathic Vestibular Syndrome. Long story short there, she basically had a really nasty case of vertigo from the nerves between her ear and brain having swelled. Since there normally is no known cause for this, it’s common in older dogs, and it usually doesn’t recur, we just chalked it up to bad timing and mushed on.

This past Monday, as I was getting ready to leave for work, Cindy had a grand mal seizure. We got her to the vet as quickly as possible (unfortunately our regular vet is on vacation), and after they checked her out and all the bloodwork was fine (actually not just fine but “perfect”) we took her home. They suggested that we could have a neurologist look at her and that he might want to do an MRI. We talked about what possible issues she could be having, and the big concern is that this could be a brain tumor, especially after factoring in the incident in Shasta. Bottom line, if it is, why put her through an MRI and yet another doc if we won’t consider surgery? And at this point I won’t. It’s risky surgery, has a high risk of developing an infection in the brain (that would likely be fatal), and she’s no spring chicken. At 15, she’d be around 90 something in human years.

Unfortunately, she had another seizure just after midnight Monday. I think I got about three 20 minute naps between 3 and 5 am that night. I stayed home with her Tuesday to keep an eye on her and so we could get some anti-seizure medication started as soon as possible. And I’d done a little research overnight. The two most likely possibilities are brain tumor or idiopathic encephalitis. Treatment for idiopathic encephalitis is anti-seizure medication and corticosteroids to reduce swelling assuming it’s not bacterial or viral (which would have shown up in the bloodwork). If it’s a brain tumor and surgery is out of the question, treatment is anti-seizure meds and corticosteroids to reduce swelling so the dog can be more comfortable and hopefully function until such time that the tumor gets so big you have to euthanize.

So we’ve opted to just treat with meds and see what happens. If it’s idiopathic encephalitis she should improve. If it’s a tumor, she’ll improve for a bit, then get worse. So we’re waiting here too. And despite their best efforts, docs don’t have all the answers. They initially put her on the “lowest therapeutic dose” of the anti-seizure meds … but the poor girl was completely out of it and had almost no muscle control after 2 days. Called the vet and talked about the dose, with them finally agreeing that we could halve the dose if we watched her closely (like I’m not going to do that!) and that we’d need to up the dose if she had another seizure. I cut it to a 3/4 dose for 24 hours, then to a half dose 24 hours ago … no additional seizures yet. More importantly, she’s regained about 60% of her muscle control.

Yeah, it’s been a little “fun” around here this past week or so. I’m ready for the emotional roller-coaster to stop. If baby Aurora shows up in the next couple of days, I’m taking all of next week off to spend some time helping the kids out. If not, I’m taking at least Tuesday off to get a little extra rest. So for the next couple of days I’ll be working on catching up with the posts I have in work, and hopefully will have a bit of time to catch up with all of you as well. And I’m really hoping October will be completely boring and uneventful.

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