It is difficult to write an update on Alissa. It would be easy to say what is happening to her body, but then people would think of her as this pathetic patient – which is not how WE think of her! We don’t want people to just see the tumors that are growing so large they tear at her skin. We want them to see the same Alissa we do; happy, full of excitement when she sees a new person, sweet, and affectionate.
Alissa has gone from one of the easiest dogs we’ve ever fostered, to requiring quite a bit of care. It doesn’t matter, she makes us happy to put in the effort. My husband and daughters all pitch in to change bandages, cover furniture with old blankets, cook for her, and try to cajole her to eat. They have rearranged schedules to make sure someone is with her 24/7. And we all act like nothing is wrong so that she isn’t affected by our emotions – and so that we can enjoy this time we have with her. I don’t say this to elicit “thanks” – it is no more than any of my fellow volunteers would do, and have done before.
Alissa also has a canine friend watching out for her – our dog Charlie. Now, Charlie has rightfully earned her title as “Little Sh*t”, by exerting her dominance over many a dog in the past. But Charlie has been nothing less than amazing with Alissa. She follows her everywhere. She sleeps inches from her, often resting her head or paw on Alissa. She sits and waits patiently as we try to feed Alissa.
Feeding has definitely become a challenge as Alissa looses her appetite. Her breakfast plate looks like some weird buffet with hamburger, cottage cheese, peanut butter cookies, boiled eggs, and sweet potatoes. This morning, the cookies and eggs were the winners. Tomorrow, she will choose something else. We had been cooking healthy, balanced meals for her, but she won’t touch it anymore. So, we will give her whatever she will eat – whatever makes her happy.
We can’t predict how much time she has left. I hope it is months, but we will take what we can get. I am trying not to think of what it will feel like when she’s not here, but I know it would have been far worse for her if she didn’t have the rescue to take her out of the shelter. We are happy to be her family for as long as we can.
Learn more about Alissa’s journey here.
It would not be possible for us to rescue and provide medical care for dogs like Alissa without the support from those who continue to generously open their hearts and wallets to help. Please follow this link to learn more about how you can donate.
Thank you from Alissa, and all the volunteers at the California GSP Rescue