Abbye Update

Abbye survived the night without food and water, although we weren’t sure that we would. A couple of times we awoke with the disturbing feeling that we were being watched. Sure enough, Abbye was sitting on the floor, in the dark, and glaring at us as if she could will us to get up and attend to her needs. It almost worked. In fact, I woke up once feeling really thirsty and couldn’t bring myself to go to the kitchen to get a drink, out of guilt.

Anyway, she had the ultrasound today and the preliminary results are mixed. She appears to have a tumor, but it’s on the pituitary gland and not the adrenal as we expected. In addition, the vet said that her gall bladder looked “sludgy” (which, believe it or not, appears to be a legitimate medical term of art; in a human, it indicates a gall bladder filled with stones…we’re not sure what the canine application entails).

Until we visit with Abbye’s regular vet, after he gets the final interpretation of the scan results, we won’t know the treatment options. But some quick research on the ‘net indicates that surgery to remove pituitary tumors is extremely rare; it’s just too delicate and complicated. They may be treated with radiation, if they’re really big.

But the other apparent option is to not do anything for the pituitary itself and instead treat the adrenal symptoms which are being caused by the former gland.

As for the gall bladder, it may be treatable via medication.

So, while we know a bit more, we still have more questions than answers, but those answers may be just around the corner. We appreciate very much all the expressions of concern and caring for the little dog, who is really enduring more than she deserves, but is doing so with her usual stoic grace. If it was me, I’d be a whining mass of self-pity; thank goodness dogs are wired differently. But, of course, that makes it all the more difficult to watch them suffer.

We’ll let you know what happens next.

Categorized as Abbye...


  1. Finally! I’ve checked all day to find out what you learned. I hope Abbye has been able to relax and enjoy a good dinner tonight. How good for her that there were no rainclouds even in sight so she could even go outdoors in peace with no risk to her little noggin! How soon will your vet get a report?

  2. The final “official” report is being prepared…somewhere (Dallas, College Station or somewhere in Colorado)…and it should be available in 3-5 days.
    She’s had plenty of treats and lunch meat tonight, although her first concern when she got home was to tank up on water…which she promptly disgorged. Fortunately, she politely asked to be let outside before doing so. 🙂

  3. You take awfully good care of her, you know.
    Brian, she’s part of the family, you know. Of course, unlike with human children, there’s a point where “heroic measures” must be balanced with financial considerations and with quality of life issues. We’re trying not to dwell on those potentialities.
    We appreciate all the support; you guys are great!

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