Today I took Queenie and George to Ohio State. Queenie needed a hoof trim, and George needed a hoof trim as well as a health check-up. He has been losing weight recently, despite having his food increased and getting treats. He also developed a strange odor.
First the easy part, Queenie – She did great and had her hooves trimmed back. Because she doesn’t walk very well due to joint issues, her hooves grow rather quickly. She will need to have hers trimmed every 3 to 6 months. If anyone is willing to donate their time and/or their gas to drive her down for one of her appointments in the future, let me know. It would be greatly appreciated!!
Now for George – I pointed out his two bumps that we have found on his right side. While he was under anesthesia having his hooves trimmed, the vet and vet students biopsied these bumps, along with about four other small ones that they discovered while checking him over. Because of his old age and the concern of possible cancerous lumps, they wanted to do a chest X-Ray on him. Unfortunately, they discovered a small lump/mass on one of his lungs. They sent the material from his biopsy out for histopathology. If these come back cancerous, then the mass on his lung is likely also cancer that has spread.
While trimming his tusks they checked out his teeth. They palpated a strange bony area along his jawline, so they investigated further back in his mouth. They discovered what appears to be either an abscess/bad infection, or a cancerous growth. They did some radiographs to find out what it might be. Infection/abscess would appear more clear and more of a pocket. A growth would be darker white and look more like bone. So far, it appears to be a deep infection. Unfortunately, based on where it is and the extent of it, treatment could be very extensive and possibly cause damage. They are concerned that digging out the infection could end up fracturing his jaw and creating other problems.
In addition to everything going on, George had a slightly difficult time recovering from the anesthesia. His body temperature dropped quite a bit so they put him under a blanket with a hose that blows warm air. Well then he was so comfy that he didn’t want to get up. He kept trying to lay back down and go to sleep. We eventually got him settled in a stall and his temp was normal again. (Also the vet students got to spoil him a little with some strawberries and a bite of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich)
For now, they recommend waiting about a week for the results of the biopsy to come back. If it comes back that it isn’t cancerous, then we can decide what to do about his jaw. If it is cancerous, there may not be much that they can do.
Instead of transporting him back and forth for appointments, they recommended leaving George at the hospital so that they could monitor him, and also the sites from his biopsies can heal (they have staples in them).
Because we didn’t want poor old George to be lonely and scared in a strange place, I decided to leave Queenie with him as a companion. (So don’t panic that Queenie is in the hospital. She is alright, she is just keeping her buddy company)
Please send tons of prayers and good energy and healing for George.