Update and Diagnosis for Lucy

Update and Diagnosis for Lucy

So many of you have sent prayers and been so kind about my Lucy, I wanted to share an update. We went back to U C Davis yesterday for a sit down with the surgeon and learn about the test results. Lucy was much braver than I was. Since the culture had shown no infection, we were worried it was cancer. A Well Styled Life at UC Davis with her dog LucyHer surgeon is the kindest, most competent and articulate vet we’ve ever met. And that’s saying something because we’ve met a lot of them!

The biopsy didn’t show cancer which is great news!! It turns out Lucy has a Papilloma Virus wart between the pads of her paw. Because of its size and location, it’s excruciating to walk on. They also suspect she had a severe reaction to the silk stitches used by the old vet which caused tremendous inflammation.

The surgeon explained her wart is too large to remove and that many dogs need to have their paws amputated. We won’t do that to the sweet old gal. There could also be underlying cancer weakening her immune system but we’re not going there right now.

Our goal is to get the inflammation down without using anti-inflammatories which weaken her immune system which needs to be strong to fight the virus. They’ve ordered interferon for her which should boost her immune system. We’ll also be starting a topical cream once the wounds heal.

The interferon takes several weeks to get and several months to see any improvement.Lucy leaving UC Davis

They rebandaged her foot and replaced her fentanyl patch. Her days are spent on the couch next to us, in our arms, in her car seat if we go out or rarely, contained to a small spot in the living room on her featherbed with fresh water close by.

We see the surgeon again on Friday to see if the stitches are ready to come out. Right now she’s fairly content. Pain is controlled and she’s being hand fed warm chicken. Once her bandage comes off she will have to wear a cone to prevent her from licking the foot and she’s going to hate that.

I can’t thank you all enough for your thoughts and prayers! I firmly believe they have helped and I feel blessed to have your kindness and support.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!






  1. Maureen
    November 14, 2017 / 9:34 am

    Nothing but good wishes and prayers for you and your girl!

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:37 pm

      Thank you so much Maureen!

  2. Kathleen O'Brien
    November 14, 2017 / 9:35 am

    Oh my dear! Our sweet furry “kids” just mean the world to us – Sounds like Lucy is going to have a short rough road but is going to be back to her sweet self soon. Especially when she’s lucky enough to have a “mommy” like you. Sending good thoughts for a speedy recovery.

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:36 pm

      Thanks for your kind wishes Kathleen! She is a darling and we’re so anxious to have her feeling better.

  3. Lianne MacGregor
    November 14, 2017 / 9:38 am

    She’s adorable!! Wishing her the very, very best (and you, too).

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:33 pm

      Thank you so much Lianne!

  4. Deborah Davis
    November 14, 2017 / 9:38 am

    Oh poor Lucy! We hate to see our furry family members in discomfort!! My Lily just had a fatty tumor removed from her hip and thankfully the stitches will be removed tomorrow. Sending hugs and prayers that Lucy will be back on her “paws” very soon and without the pain!! Thanks for the update!

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:33 pm

      Sending best wishes to your Lily!! Thank goodness it was just a fatty tumor and she is ok. It is so hard to see them suffer. Thanks for your prayers and hugs. They all help.

  5. Elaine
    November 14, 2017 / 9:39 am

    Hoping for a speedy recovery for Lucy!

  6. Betty Krekorian
    November 14, 2017 / 9:44 am

    So happy you’ve found the right vet/diagnosis/treatment for your precious Lucy! You are wise not to give her too many meds since they can trigger other ailments. We experienced that with our much loved shihtzu, Max, whom we had to let go last Thanksgiving day. We miss him dearly and felt your pain as you described your vet experiences in your messages. Thank you for sharing and thank God your faithful Lucy is on the mends.

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:30 pm

      I’m so sorry to hear about your Max, Betty. It is so painful to lose our faithful furry loves. Sending warm thoughts your way and thanks for your kind words.

  7. Lee
    November 14, 2017 / 9:44 am

    Thank you for update. Sounds so stressful. I pray all continues to move forward and she can enjoy being herself again. Give her a hug from me. She is just precious.

  8. November 14, 2017 / 9:48 am

    I’m glad to hear it wasn’t cancer! And that her pain is controlled.

    BTW, they now have inflatable “donut” collars that do the same thing as a cone, but don’t inhibit the animal’s ability to eat and drink, or movement through tight spaces.

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:23 pm

      Thank you so much Susan! I am on a hunt for one for her now!!

  9. Dorothy
    November 14, 2017 / 9:49 am

    Oh how sweet she looks . Seems like she is in the best of hands now. Continued prayers.

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:22 pm

      Many thanks Dorothy!!

  10. November 14, 2017 / 9:49 am

    My dogs are my only family. My ears perk up when I know about other people who love and care for their dogs like you do. It sounds like you’re doing everything right. I hope the pain meds kick in, and she’s not too groggy, and all heals well. Tell her there are a lot of us who care about her. xoxox, Brenda

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:20 pm

      Thanks so much Brenda!! She is a sweet girl.

  11. Karen H.
    November 14, 2017 / 9:55 am

    She is such a precious baby, and looks adorable in her seat in the car! Keeping her in prayer for fast healing. You are such good Lucy parents! She will receive lots of love and prayers.

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:19 pm

      Thanks for your prayers Karen!!

  12. November 14, 2017 / 9:58 am

    Poor sweet Lucy. I’m glad she is getting good care. I’m sure the warm chicken is distracting her from everything going on. It’s so hard when pets are sick. I’m thinking of both of you. xo

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:18 pm

      The chicken has her head spinning and she is totally intoxicated with it! Thanks, Jen. xx

  13. Judith
    November 14, 2017 / 9:58 am

    Thanks for the update….our thoughts and prayers are with you both. Take care of your Baby!

  14. Karen
    November 14, 2017 / 9:58 am

    Jennifer – Our dog Molly, age 14, had surgery on her foot earlier this year. We were given a cone for her to wear after the surgery and she just hated it. She did not sleep with it on, couldn’t get comfortable and just looked so very sad. We used a bad tasting wound tape on her foot and also had her wear a “boot” – actually an IV bag from the vet with the top cut off. This worked really well. Maybe if Lucy doesn’t tolerate the cone well you could use bad tasting tape and a boot.

    Good luck and love to you and Lucy.

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:14 pm

      We have tried the cone for her other times and she detests it. The nasty tasting tape sounds like a really good idea Karen. We are also going to investigate a blow-up collar that might not be so uncomfortable for her. Sending good wishes to your Molly!

  15. Roxanne
    November 14, 2017 / 9:59 am

    Oh wow, what mixed emotions over this diagnosis for sweet Lucy. Of all possible diagnoses, this is a better one but to have her in so much pain must be very difficult for you. Lucky she has a good mommy and daddy. Dogs can develop some really unusual problems. We rescued a dachshund from PuertoRico when she was 6. It was believed she escaped from a puppy mill where she was used for breeding. Rosie had an autoimmune reaction to her shots which caused part of her pinna (the floppy part of the ear) to die and had to be amputated. She doesn’t care, she is just happy to have a home and lots of love. Rosie sends Lucy a get well hug!

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:09 pm

      Bless you for adopting Rosie! She’s a very lucky girl. Dogs are pure love and deserve all the best care we can get for them.

      • Roxanne
        November 15, 2017 / 6:18 am

        Jennifer, another reader mentioned the inflatable donut collar. We got one for our other dog from Amazon. Buddy did not seem to mind it, and was able to rest his head comfortably when he would lie down. They look a bit like those pillows people wear on planes.

        • November 15, 2017 / 11:36 am

          I just ordered one in 2 sizes and hope they work for her. I hope she likes it:)

      • Roxanne
        November 15, 2017 / 8:40 am

        Jennifer, we had really good luck with the donut E collar one of your other readers mentioned. It is very soft and our Buddy dog never fought wearing it. It doesn’t block their vision like the Cone of Shame! Bought ours on AMazon. He would rest his head on it for naps. Kind of reminds me of those pillows people take on planes.

        • November 15, 2017 / 10:19 am

          I’m finding lots of options online…was yours literally called E-collar? The ones that look the comfiest seem to have a fabric covering.

        • Roxanne
          November 15, 2017 / 10:28 am

          It is called a Kong cloud e collar…covered with soft blue fabric. Little Lucy may need the cat size, measure her neck.

        • November 15, 2017 / 11:13 am

          Thanks Roxanne! I found it and just ordered it in 2 sizes to be certain it fits because her stitches are supposed to come out Friday and then the bandage should come off too.

  16. Veronica
    November 14, 2017 / 10:07 am

    Glad you finally got a diagnosis. My lab had the same thing, only on the top of his toe, rather than the pad. We opted to do nothing. Sometimes it’s the best choice for an animal getting on in years. Quality of life, that’s the thing, I think. Hugs to little Lucy and a life full of love and warm chicken!

    • November 14, 2017 / 8:01 pm

      I hope this tumor shrinks and is something she can live with. I don’t want to put her through painful procedures and want her to have a good quality of life.Thanks Veronica!

  17. c cartwright
    November 14, 2017 / 10:24 am

    Thank you for this update on Lucy. I have been so concerned about her and you guys during this time. I am so thankful that you have found a doggie surgeon that you are very comfortable with.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:59 pm

      Her surgeon is amazing and we feel blessed to have found this team. Thanks for your kind thoughts!

  18. Cynthia Baker
    November 14, 2017 / 10:33 am

    I am so sorry for you and for your lovely Lucy! We just had to put our dog down, only a few weeks after her diagnosis of bone cancer. Everything happened so fast. I am sending good thoughts that Lucy’s strength returns and she’s able to fight this.

    Concerning the cone: would you be able to use one of the new ‘neck pillow’ type of cone?

    Sending good thoughts,


    • November 14, 2017 / 7:58 pm

      Dear Cynthia, I am so very sorry to hear about your sweetie. It’s beyond painful to lose our fur friends. They take a piece of hearts with them when they go. Sending hugs your way.

  19. November 14, 2017 / 10:45 am

    Jennifer, I’m so happy the diagnosis isn’t as dire as cancer! We’ll keep you all in our prayers and hope and pray for a good recovery for sweet little Lucy!

  20. dee
    November 14, 2017 / 10:46 am

    We will continue to raise up Lucy. Animals quickly become family members. They just want to give us love, how could we not try to help them. She is on the path to feeling better.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:54 pm

      Thank you Dee!! I am praying so.

  21. Judith
    November 14, 2017 / 10:55 am

    Thank you sincerely for the update. You and Lucy have been much on my mind. You could not be in better hands than UC Davis. Lucy could not be in better hands than yours.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:50 pm

      I feel so fortunate to be able to take her to UC Davis! Those vets are amazing!! Thank you for your kindness Judith. xx

  22. Lynn
    November 14, 2017 / 11:04 am

    Your poor baby! I too, have an elderly Lucy and her issue is her back. It’s so hard watching them age. What I want to say though, is that the cone won’t be so bad. They have soft ones now and when one of my dogs wore one for a week or so, he got used to it pretty quickly. It did get in his way if he tried to jump up on the sofa or bed but was otherwise a bearable time. Prayers for your Lucy!

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:48 pm

      Thanks Lynn. I’ll be looking for one of those for her. She’s tiny so her her neck is short so soft will be better.

  23. Helen
    November 14, 2017 / 11:06 am

    Awwww, I’m so glad to hear the news but know it’s still an uphill battle. She is adorable and I will pray that she is happy and finds relief with the meds. Please keep us updated as you know more..

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:46 pm

      Thank you Helen. I will keep everyone posted.

  24. Kathy
    November 14, 2017 / 11:09 am

    That is encouraging news, Jennifer. Hope Lucy continues to heal and get better!

  25. Joanna
    November 14, 2017 / 11:39 am

    The poor little baby. I know you and your new vet are giving her excellent care. What can I say but give her lots of loving.
    I learnt a lesson from my first dog. She was 14 which is old for a medium size dog. We all loved her dearly so we treated her and treated her. She would rally and then crash. Finally, I told the vet and my husband, “enough!” It was selfish of us to want to keep her alive even though she was obviously suffering. So…we made the tough decision to say good-bye. I’m not saying it’s that time for Lucy but just a gentle reminder.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:45 pm

      I appreciate that reminder, Joanna. I know that struggle well. We went through it with our last boy, Finn. I finally insisted it was time and have never regretted that decision. This came on suddenly with Lucy so felt it necessary to get her treatment until we knew what was happening. Those are painful choices to make but our responsibility as owners.

  26. Donna
    November 14, 2017 / 11:50 am

    Lots and lots of prayers going up for Miss Lucy!

  27. Julie from Melbourne,Australia
    November 14, 2017 / 11:51 am

    Jennifer thanks so much for the update and at least you now know what is going on,which will give you peace of mind and the ability to go forward with knowledge.Sending special hugs to you and Lucy.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:40 pm

      Thank you so much Julie. Knowing is a great relief.

  28. Karen
    November 14, 2017 / 12:07 pm

    Thank you for the update. Our fur babies are so important in our lives. Sending love and prayers to all of you. When my huskey had spindle cell carcinoma n his foot, they removed it and put him in a walking cast which relieved pain and pressure. Wonder if that wd help Miss Lucy?

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:38 pm

      I will ask about that Karen. That’s partly why they keep bandaging her paw. To provide additional support. She is a little sweetie and we adore her.

  29. Terry
    November 14, 2017 / 12:24 pm

    Good news/bad news situation, Jennifer. I know y’all are thankful for the definitive diagnosis and you have a plan now. Praying for sweet Lucy ‘s inflammation to subside and for her to be free of pain. Thanks for the update.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:36 pm

      Thanks Terry. Knowing is a great relief and now we go forward to get her the best care we can.

  30. Diana
    November 14, 2017 / 12:27 pm

    Alison Gary of wardrobeoxygen.com found a much moreover comfortable looking cone for her dog. Unfortunately, I can’t find any of her pictures but I’m sure she can tell you where she bought it. Prayers for Lucy.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:35 pm

      Thank you Diana! I will write to Alison and ask her where she found it.

  31. Jill
    November 14, 2017 / 1:03 pm

    Good girl, Lucy! Thank you for the up date. It sounds as if Lucy is getting the best of care. She will get used to the cone or neck contraption. Please keep us posted.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:33 pm

      She is getting the very best care at UC Davis! I feel so lucky there are available to us.

  32. November 14, 2017 / 1:44 pm

    I am so glad she will be with you longer! Such a cutie!

  33. Betty Goodwin
    November 14, 2017 / 2:12 pm

    Hope Lucy is feeling better soon.so glad it wasn’t cancer.

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:32 pm

      Thanks Betty! Me too!

  34. Olwyn
    November 14, 2017 / 2:33 pm

    Love that you are feeding her real food and not processed dog food which is probably causing so many believed pets their health! May she heal wonderfully!

  35. November 14, 2017 / 3:45 pm

    I’m glad she is doing better and pray that she will continue to heal well. What an ordeal you’ve been through… Sending hugs to all of you!

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:30 pm

      Thanks so much Andrea!

  36. Ramona Black
    November 14, 2017 / 3:50 pm

    I feel for you, have been through scary medical things with my dogs. Have to say that your worry may pass and it will all be fine (based on a frightening experience we had where we even considered an amputation- thank god we didn’t do that!) Our regular vet and a holistic vet saved the day. We continue the regimen the holistic vet prescribed and our dog is doing great!

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:30 pm

      That’s wonderful to hear Ramona! I did just find a holistic vet and will be following up with her.

  37. Trish Hertsgaard
    November 14, 2017 / 4:04 pm

    Continued prayers for your adorable fur baby. I pray she continues to improve and that her pain is minimal.
    Please keep us posted!

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:28 pm

      Thanks so much Trish, I will!

  38. Rosemary
    November 14, 2017 / 5:01 pm

    Thoughts are with you all. It’s so hard to see someone – anyone- you love, in pain.

  39. La Contessa
    November 14, 2017 / 5:30 pm

    Poor Lucy!

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:28 pm

      I feel so bad for her

  40. Janet
    November 14, 2017 / 7:16 pm

    Poor baby! Sending positive thoughts your way!

  41. Catherine
    November 14, 2017 / 7:27 pm

    Hello Jennifer, Great news that it is not cancerous and hope and pray that this new drug will assist in a full recovery. Our pets are near and dear to our hearts and we all do what it takes to improve their quality of living. Sweet Lucy is very fortunate to have you and your husband ensuring that she receives the best care. She is adorable and love the sparkle on her collar!

    • November 14, 2017 / 7:53 pm

      We are thrilled it’s not cancer but know she has some struggles ahead. We are so fortunate she can be seen at UC Davis…they are amazing!!

  42. Deede
    November 15, 2017 / 2:59 am

    Wow…Great news for Lucy…Your life will now be day to day continuing to love and support your little girl…The cone is just awful…I would try the suggestions here to avoid putting that piece of torture on her…I used baby socks in layers for Tobs…and it worked…I taped the top to keep them on…You will be able to gauge her needs…
    Wish I could wave a wand and make this go away for Lucy and for you…Since my powers only go so far…smile…I instead keep your little one close to my heart…Be kind to Jennifer just now as you search the universe for ways to make Lucy comfortable…My absolute BEST for you two..Deede

    • November 15, 2017 / 9:57 am

      Thanks so much Deede, you are such a dear lady. I did buy socks for her but never thought of the tape!! Great idea because there will be times any collar is awkward. Have a great day! xx

  43. Becky Van Noy
    November 15, 2017 / 4:40 am

    So happy to hear the diagnosis isn’t cancer, Jennifer! I won’t stop praying … Lucy is a beautiful girl and deserves good health!

    • November 15, 2017 / 10:05 am

      Thanks so much Becky!xx

  44. Brenda Barker
    November 15, 2017 / 6:39 am

    Jennifer – instead of a cone what about finding a toddler one piece pj set with feet that would prevent her suckling on her foot. I did this with a cat – I purchased 3 – that I washed – cut a hole for her tail and the drop seat I pinned open for her to use the litter box. She was much happier and I wasn’t having to fight her with the cone – she was really cute and cosy warm.

    • November 15, 2017 / 10:17 am

      That’s such a cute idea! Lucy always seems cold these days so we have the furnace pumped up. Those cones are torture devices and I just can’t do that to her.

  45. Melissa
    November 16, 2017 / 5:13 am

    Poor little girl, it is so hard to see them in pain and discomfort. I hope that she gets better soon, but don’t rule out amputation. Dogs and cats get on fine on three legs. We had a cat we rescued that had an horrific injury to her front leg. I think she may have been caught in a rabbit trap for a number of days which killed the blood supply to the leg which sort of mummified. The whole leg was amputated right up to the shoulder but she recovered very quickly and ran around on three legs as happy as can be. Thinking of you in these trying times.

    • November 16, 2017 / 8:55 am

      Thank you Melissa. Your poor kitty!! Caught in a trap. It breaks my heart to think of her suffering through that. Bless you

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