Being a puppy mommy has been the best thing of my whole summer and I wouldn't trade it for anything. I love my little (not so little anymore) boy so much and want to spoil him to the best of my abilities. But this also means that we are responsible for him in every since way and that adds a lot of worry to both J and I. We worry that he's eating too much/not enough. We worry that he's getting enough exercise. We worry that we're teaching him the things he needs to be a mature, happy, and well behaved addition to our family for many, many years.
And then we got home from our walk last night to find this on his leg.
It's bright red with thinning hair. It's about the size of a blueberry. It's completely solid but doesn't hurt him at all. First thing that pops into my head is that it's a tick; that somehow we missed the early signs and now it's dug its way into his foot but it seems odd for this area. Then I think maybe it's a puss filled cyst; but it's completely solid so that's out. Then I think maybe he got bit by something (which is the scariest option for me given that the people I nanny for just lost their dog to an unknown, potential bug bite); a spider or something else mean but it doesn't hurt him at all, we didn't notice him favoring this foot at all, and we didn't year him cry from the actual incident.
But literally, this scary thing seemed to come out of nowhere and extremely fast. I had just cut his nails the other day and know I would have noticed something that close to his toes. We were a little comforted that it wasn't bothering him but we were still insistent that we get it checked out, and ASAP. So early this morning and we were off to the vet.
Thank goodness, the doctor explained to us that, because of his age, it's most likely a histiocytoma: a benign skin growth that is most usually found in dogs under the age of 2 years old. They appear rapidly, typically don't bother the dog (unless their location is in an inconvenient place like their ears/face), pose no harm, and go away within a few months.
I bet the doctor could see our shoulders ease and hear both of us sigh a big breath of relief when she told us our boy was fine. The only way to definitively diagnose his growth as a histiocytoma (and not something more serious) is to take a biopsy so we paid the money and should know within 3 days. I am so happy that we hopefully have nothing to worry about with our baby. I still feel like I'm keeping a special eye on him and probably will until this thing is gone forever.
He was given a little bandage because of some bleeding when they did his biopsy. It wasn't anything serious, they just wanted to keep pressure on it until we got home. Even though I know I have nothing to worry about, I was still so sad to see his little foot all wrapped up. He tried to lick it a few times but did really good with his wrap and hasn't bothered the spot all day. I'm so proud of him.
But man, can I please have a healthy boy for the rest of his life? I can't imagine how I'd feel if it was a bigger deal than this relatively
freaky small growth.