Saturday, September 1, 2018

Not What We Expected

Look at that Frankenstein belly!
Wedgwood went for stomach surgery on Tuesday.  Morning traffic was slow and aggravating - it gave me additional time stress about past surgeries that didn't go well.  I was a tad emotional when I got to the vet.  But the vet techs were wonderful, told me Wedgwood was everyone's favorite and assured me she was in good hands.  I left feeling better than I arrived.

Surgery started out well, but they soon discovered the culprit of the stomach issues - a large tumor growing out of her pancreas.  Not partial torsion after all; Wedgwood's stomach was being squeezed by the tumor.  Because of the size, position and amount of blood vessels entwined with the tumor, the vet was disinclined to mess with it.  It was a nasty surprise from how she described it.  We made the joint decision to leave it, but it was disappointing to put Wedgwood through the surgery and be unable to fix anything. 

I remember when I had mono how sick I'd feel after a car ride.  I can only imagine how the nearly hour long drive home felt for Wedgwood after having her guts pulled out and repacked.  She perked up a little when we came in the door.  Wedg knew she was home.  But it was a miserable evening, holed up in her cozy, occasionally crying.  I felt awful for her, wondering if it would have been better to chance removing the tumor.  I gave her a little critical care, made sure there was food and water in reach, and left her in the recovery cage for the night.  I was not feeling hopeful.

But... on Wednesday morning I was greeted by a pile of poo and a standing Wedgwood with her nose buried in a pile of hay.  Oh, joy!  I had not anticipated such a dramatic turnaround.  Given how miserable she was only hours before, she was acting like her usual self.  Amazing!

She waddled around the cage like a crippled old lady.  Poor thing.  But Wedg chowed down pellets, kept her nose buried in the hay and accepted treats with enthusiasm.

Mabel came to visit for a short time.  I thought a little company might be nice.  Mabel was interested in Wedg, but more interested in the cage and the food.  When Wedgwood started to tell Mabel to get out of her face, I decided visiting hours were over.

Wedgwood spent most of Wednesday sleeping and eating.  She was walking fairly normal by Thursday afternoon.  I decided that it might help her appetite if she could see and hear Mable eating her food (because all food belongs to Wedgie).  I spent some time blocking off the upper levels in the cage (no jumping for a week!) and let her in.  Wedgwood spent several minutes inspecting the place, then settled.  There was some whining and complaining about unwanted attention from Mabel.  Mabel was bitten a few times just to make sure she got the message.  There was peace and quiet.

It's now another two days later and Wedg is looking and acting like her old self.  Her weight has been stable and she's pooing like a champ.  Occasionally she waddles a little - that scar on her belly must feel funny.  It feels weird to me every time I pick her up!

Reconfigured cage with no (accessible) upper levels

So now we're stuck with an inoperable tumor on Wedgwood's pancreas (the photos were amazing - and gross).  Her intestines weren't normal, either.  This was my worst case scenario:  a slow decline that can't be fixed.  Seriously sucks.  However, I am so thrilled to have Wedgwood back and acting like herself.  I wish she'd gain a little more weight in the last couple of days, but after going through major surgery?  She's doing great.  Having the information helps knowing what I'm in for.  For now, days are good, and I'm hoping Wedg will continue to heal quickly from the surgery.


  1. Sally, I'm so sorry. Sadly, I can relate to finding piggie digestive tumors that were unexpected during surgery. But Wedgie will have love and treats for as long as possible, and that's what matters.

  2. Oh Sally, so sorry to hear that Wedgwood has an inoperable tumour, a horrid shock as you say `not expected´ but how strong she must be to return to her normal self the very next day after all the hassle. Could the vet give her any treatment?

  3. What a nightmare for you and Wedgewood. I'm sorry you didn't get better news at the vet, even though you now know what you are dealing with. I hope her tummy heals well and quickly and that she is with you for a while long

  4. Sally I am so sorry to hear your news, but at the same time glad Wedgwood is home and seems to be okay at the moment, and gradually returning to 'normal'. I hope she gets to enjoy her time left. I hope she doesn't have any pain from it. Good to see her with Mabel.

  5. oh no... just like life! More waiting and watching and powerlessness.
    You are doing what you can and more.

    You are healing energy for her, and Mable will learn to be a better nursemaid. Poor Wedgie... so much for a pig to deal with.
    Be strong my friend... thinking of you and this tribulation.

  6. So glad Wedg is recovering rapidly from her surgery! It must have been both scary and frustrating to go through all that stress beforehand and then find mid-procedure that the problem was a tumor considered inoperable. Like you, I would have wondered afterward if I should have risked removal, and hoped for the best. But that's the hell of these situations - there's just no way to know. Even now I can't think about Kitty Rex's last few months of life without thinking of what I would have done differently if I had known what was coming. Oh well, we do our best and surround them in the best day-to-day life possible, and that's a lot - as Wedg and Mabel can testify by their chirpy wheeky ways :)

  7. This is not good news. It is great Wedg is healing from her surgery and getting back to her normal self. What a trooper she is. Sending you a big hug.

  8. Ohhhhh poor baby! I am so sorry this is happening to the both of you xx. Sending positive thoughts xx.

  9. This is so sad. I'm sending hugs to you all. I'm so sorry Sally.

  10. Oh, dear. I understand how heart-wrenching this is. We always have a tendency to second-guess ourselves (and the vet!) But we can only make the decisions with the information we have. It may sound trite, but I hope you enjoy every moment with her.


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