The results of Max's tumor swab came back on Monday and it turns out they didn't confirm cancer. Now that doesn't mean it isn't cancer... but it does mean, at least, they didn't confirm it is. The report suggested infection, and so my vet, while still professing to have "a bad feeling", put Max on a 20-day regimen of Baytril.
I got the news at work. The funny thing is, when the vet told me he thought Max had cancer, I was quietly horrified and very sad, but I managed to hold onto it. When the news came it might be just an infection and they were going to treat it, for now, as such, it nearly overwhelmed me. I felt weak and I had to struggle to maintain my composure in the office. A co-worker suggested I work from home that afternoon, which I did, after picking up Max's pills.
I also got Pill Pockets, in which you hide the pill. I got a bonus first pill free down the hatch from Max. Afterward, he's suddenly decided he's not interested in treats anymore. After repeated attempts to pill him by stealth during the day, I had to fight the second one into him last night. No dice tricking him this morning, either, even ground up in salmon (wasted salmon, wasted pill). I'm so not looking forward to giving him this pill. I'm thinking of biting the bullet and calling the vet for some oral liquid. He might manage to spit some of it out, but at least some of it'll have to go down, too. If it's an infection strong enough to make a vet think it's cancer, it's not going to get better on its own. It's going to be chronic unless we knock it out. And the little bastard is not cooperating.
None of them are. Bonnie doesn't like tuna. Bonnie doesn't like salmon. Bonnie likes the crappy goo off Friskies canned cat food. I've got umpteen opened cans on the go now. A month ago, I opened a can of Friskies, made three meals out of it twice a day, and boom, I was done. This weekend I was using the Magic Bullet to puree tuna so Max could eat it, having to open a can of something else because Bonnie wouldn't, and having to chase Ally away before she sucked up the food Max needed to stay alive.
Things are a little better now. Max's appetite seems more reliable; he's been showing up again in the kitchen at breakfast time and I don't have to puree things. If it weren't for the fact he favours the right side chewing and sometimes shakes his head while eating, at the moment I honestly wouldn't know there were anything up with him. Even if we get no further than this, it's pretty good. If only he'd make life easy and eat the Pill Pockets with the Baytril in them...
I'm not sure what to think but after a weekend of expecting I should number my days with Max on my fingers and toes, or even just my fingers, I'm honestly grateful to have the luxury of thinking that fighting pills down his gullet might mean our time together opens up considerably again. Who knows? But no matter what happens, just having that has been pretty sweet.