Something told me to take Heather to bed with me last night. I can't explain why. I just felt it was important she spend the night with me. So, I scooped her up and to bed we went. Less than two hours later, I woke up to the sound of quick, short breaths. Heather was sleeping but she was breathing incredibly fast. I shot up to check on her and surprisingly, her breath normalized shortly thereafter.
I tried to settle back in and was just dozing off when Heather suddenly stood up and stared across the room. I watched her carefully and a few minutes later, she relaxed and sat back down. Fast forward maybe another 20 minutes or so, and it happened again. This time, she looked directly at me. I coaxed her to come to me so I could pet her and make her feel more comfortable. It worked but I quickly realized there wouldn't be much sleep for either of us that night.
And so it went on, hour after hour. Nothing really appeared to be wrong - only twice during the night did she seem like her breath was labored. The rest of the time Heather was inexplicably restless. I was terrified and woke up with a start any time I felt my eyes closing. Was she still breathing? Was this really it? She seems fine but why so restless and why had I felt compelled to bring her to bed? I'm usually not the superstitious type but couldn't help wondering if this was some kind of sign.
Finally, sleep found us both. And in the morning, Heather enjoyed a big bowl of boiled chicken and rice - now her favorite meal. There were no breathing issues and she seemingly was fine once more. I couldn't help but think of what a strange night it had been. What did it all mean? Was I missing something? Is she really okay? What if she's in pain and I have had no idea? When I came home from work this evening, Heather was in her usual spot, resting on the floor vent soaking up the AC.
I smiled and said hello but Heather didn't get up. I moved closer and pet her gently but still she did not get up. Her eyes weren't as bright and happy. I scooped her up and put her on all fours only to find that she slid back down. My heart stopped. How had her health declined so fast? Was this a result of the clot in her leg or was this a symptom of the cancer progressing? I took her outside where she promptly took care of business and actually took a few steps on her own before lying down in the warm, green grass. Suddenly, reality set in and I knew we very well could be at the end of the road.
Once again, she enjoyed a full meal. Although, she had to eat it while lying down. Her back legs have lost almost all function in a matter of hours. Just a few days ago, you wouldn't have been able to tell that she was sick. Tonight, after a conversation with the V-E-T, I'm left contemplating next steps. Heather will be going in for an evaluation with the V-E-T first thing in the morning but the anxiety is high and the heart is heavy tonight in light of this turn of events. Of course, I'm hoping for the best but knowingly preparing for the worst. Please keep my sweet girl in your thoughts tonight.