Pablo has a new nickname. It’s Bumble, after the Yeti-like beast in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. That’s Bumble after his tooth extraction by Herbie. Unlike Bumble, however, Pablo still has a few teeth in his head, but not many.
The saga started right before the holidays when we took him to a new vet for a check-up. Since Pablo wasn’t experiencing any problems, I was expecting a short meet-and-greet and then a few shots to bring him up to date on his vaccines. When the vet showed us a mysterious bump/lump/growth on his upper jaw, my heart began to thump. She said that it could be a number of things, but we should get it checked out, the sooner the better, and gave us a referral to a dental surgeon. Trouble was, we were leaving right after the holidays to Utah to visit K’s family. No way could we safely squeeze in surgery. So we spent a very anxious Christmas and New Year worrying what that mysterious bump/lump/growth could be.
Last week Pablo finally had his appointment. He knew things were not going well when we couldn’t feed him breakfast. He looked at us with eyes that said, “Ya gotta be kidding me.” At the hospital, the vet took a look and didn’t seem too concerned about the bump/lump/growth. He focused instead on Pablo’s teeth, saying that most of them were in terrible shape and could cause him serious problems down the road–the worst case scenario, a broken jaw. (Our last vet’s attitude had been, “It’s pug teeth; what can you do?”) We left Pablo in the arms of a nurse and spent an agonizing day waiting for the phone to ring.
In the end, almost all of his teeth had to come out. The vet took a biopsy of the bump/lump/growth but didn’t think it was cancerous, although he did send it out to be tested. We’re waiting to hear the results. Meanwhile, we took the patient home, still groggy from anesthesia. After a rough couple of days, he was on the mend. Today, almost a week later, he’s back to his old self. (Except he’s still on meds and has to eat soft food.) Next Thursday he goes back to the vet for a check-up and hopefully it’s clear sailing from there. Yes, we could have taken the money it cost us and gone on a trip to Europe. But then he smiles at us with that goofy, toothless grin. Priceless.
UPDATE: This just in. I heard back from the vet right after I posted. Good news. The biopsy showed that the bump/lump/growth isn’t cancerous. It’s probably just residual tissue that built up after a previous extraction. So relieved!