November 12, 2012. The memory of certain days will stay in my mind forever. November 12, 2012 is one of those days. November 12, 2012 is the day we said our final goodbyes to Maggie.
It was about a year ago when I noticed Maggie seemed to be drinking a bit more water than usual. Then she had an accident in the house. She hadn't had an accident since she was a puppy so I knew something was wrong. A trip to the vet revealed she had an infection and after a couple days on antibiotics she seemed normal again. We finished the antibiotics and everything seemed good. A couple weeks later, the same symptoms appeared again. Another trip to the vet and more antibiotics but this time I asked for blood work to be done. The blood work came back with high Creatinine and BUN levels. They were more than three times as high as normal. The vet did an ultrasound and found significant scarring on both kidneys. To try to bring those values down, Maggie spent a week at the clinic getting IV fluids to try to flush her kidneys and bring those levels down. It helped a bit, but not as much as we hoped. At this point she was eating okay and seemed very normal but it didn't take long and her appetite started to go downhill. I cooked her special kidney friendly meals but when she didn't want to eat them I would give her anything she wanted just to keep her eating. Much of my days revolved around finding things that Maggie would eat - what was good one day, she turned her nose up at the next. Scrambled eggs, roast chicken, A&W hamburgers, steak. Anything Maggie would eat, she would get.
To try to keep Maggie's kidneys working as well as they could, I was giving her sub-Q fluids at home. A litre every day. She was such a good girl about the whole thing and would lay on the couch and get her treatment. I am certain the sub-Q fluid treatments were a big factor in keeping Maggie's kidney levels stable - they kept her hydrated and took stress off her already damaged kidneys. Unfortunately, it didn't work forever and her values started to creep up and she began to get too weak to have the quality of life that she deserved. It was a very hard thing to see - her mind was still active and her eyes still bright but her body was too weak to go on.
November 12, 2012 we had to say good-bye.