We arrived at the hospital for check-in at 8:00 a.m., and I started to feel like I was going to have a full blown panic attack or pass out. The receptionist kindly offered to let me have a moment with Munch in a private room prior to taking her back to prep for surgery. I went into the room and stayed strong. I didn’t want Munch to feed off of my emotions and tense up. I just kept thinking to myself, “Am I doing the right thing? Should I just run out of the hospital with her before it’s too late?” We spent about ten minutes alone, and then it was time. Here’s a short video and the last photo I will ever have of her right front leg. RIP cancerous limb.
I waited at the hospital until the surgeon came out to greet me. She explained that surgery went well. The entire limb with the scapula was removed and sent for biopsy; this would determine the grade of the cancer and whether chemotherapy was in our future. I was relieved. Munch was sent straight to the intensive care unit and put on Fentanyl through her IV, which ran continuously through the night to keep her comfortable. I cried on the way home, grieving the loss of her leg… it was an overwhelming feeling knowing that we had to make a wrenching decision to save her life. Having hardly slept, I went home to rest while she recovered, and returned to the hospital that evening with my husband.
Our first time seeing our fur baby post-op was heartbreaking. She was sedated from the heavy pain medication and I felt so terrible that my husband wasn’t prepared to see Munch without the leg. She was brought into our room with no dressing in place, wrapped in only a blanket. The blanket fell down on the side of her surgery and my husband lost it. Everything became very real and final during this visit: our sweet baby girl was now a tripawd. Luckily Munch was so medicated that she wasn’t able to get upset seeing her papa cry.