I really don’t even know where to start on this post. This past week I’ve felt like my whole world has seriously come crashing down around me, and we’re only at the beginning. When we went to sleep last Sunday everything was completely normal, and then on Monday everything changed.

Monday morning when I woke up and went to work, Dart was acting like his usual self. He jumped down off the bed and got in his dog bed and waited for his usual doggie treat, except that he wasn’t very interested in the treat at all. I didn’t think anything of it to be perfectly honest, and thought that maybe he had a stomach bug because he’s a dog that is prone to “garbage gut” as my mom tends to refer to it.

Well Dart didn’t really stop acting weird that morning, so Chris thought that it would be better to take him into the vet just to be on the safe side. They ran a bunch of tests at the vet and what they found was that he actually had bleeding in his abdomen. There wasn’t anything that they could do for Dart at our normal vet, so they sent us on to a specialist.

When we got to the specialist, they walked us through everything that was going on with Dart and what it could possibly be that was causing the bleeding in his stomach. They had taken an ultrasound of his stomach and found that it was more than likely coming from a tumor that had ruptured on his spleen, and the only way to make it stop was to remove the spleen through surgery. They also told us that 75% of the time the reason that these tumors form is because of a very malignant form of cancer that the survival rate is just really small.

Once the vets had gotten Dart stabilized, we knew that surgery was for sure the way that we wanted to go. We didn’t want him to be in any pain, and even though it was a small chance that it wasn’t cancer, we knew that it was a chance we’d want to take.

We got to say goodbye to him before his surgery and I pretty much lost it right then and there. The last time that we saw him hooked up to all of the tubes and lying in a hospital kennel was right after he had his accident, and it just brought back so many hard memories. We went home after they took him into surgery, and we got a very happy call from the surgeon saying that everything had gone well with the surgery about an hour later.

The Wandering Weekenders- Life Can Change In An Instant

The next few days were very tough. We got to go back to the hospital to visit him every day, and he was definitely very out of it the first day, but each day he looked better and better. On Thursday we got to take him home, and we were so incredibly over the moon. We still hadn’t heard back from pathology about if the tumor was cancer, but seeing him so happy and basically back to his old self was giving us hope.

The Wandering Weekenders- Life Can Change In An Instant

We literally pulled into the driveway when we got home, and that’s when everything just came falling down all over again. The vet had just gotten the pathology results back and it was cancer. I basically spent the rest of the night crying and cuddling with Dart as much as possible because I just can’t imagine life without him. He’s my baby, the very first dog that Chris and I got together, and there will always be a hole in my heart that nobody or thing will be able to fill.

The Wandering Weekenders- Life Can Change In An Instant

We have our meeting with oncology to talk about our options on Friday and I’m hoping against hope that there will be something positive that comes out of that meeting. But until then we’re just trying to spend as much time with him as possible, which meant that we spent the whole weekend all three of us just cuddling on the couch together.

I think that a blogging break last week was just what I needed when everything was going on. But I think that coming back to this space every week will be something that will help me to keep my mind off of everything, so I’ll try to keep everything light and bright because that’s what I need right now. But if I’m a little slow to respond on things, you’ll know why. Thank y’all for all of your thoughts and prayers for our little guy to make a full recovery.

  • Stacy

    Sending you, Chris, and Dart endless love, hugs, and puppy cuddles!! I am so sorry y’all have to go through all of this, but thank goodness for amazing vets in Houston! ❤❤❤

    • Exactly! I feel like we’ve also been really blessed because all of our vets seem to have sighthounds, so they know exactly what to do in order to help us out.

  • I’m so so sorry to hear that. Dealing with pet medical issues is so hard. Take all the time you need to be with your baby. Sending thoughts and prayers your way.

    • Thank you so much! I feel like this must be what happens when you have a baby because they can’t tell you what’s wrong. He’s already feeling so much better which is really encouraging for us.

  • I’m so sorry. Thinking of you all!! Hope you get in lots of snuggles and that he heals.

    • Thank you! He’s definitely already back to being his old self which helps so much! And I think that he’s probably feeling overwhelmed from all of the snuggles we’re giving him!

  • Ashley!!! I’m so so sorry to hear this. Thinking about you guys and sweet Dart.

    • Thank you so much! It was tough right after his surgery because he was so weak, but now he’s definitely back to being his old self which helps so much!

  • Jen

    Oh sweet friend. I am so so sorry. Sending lots of love your way. Dart is so lucky to have you guys, I am sending lots of love and cuddles his way.

    • Thank you so much! It was really hard the first few days, but once he really started to act like his old self it got better. We still have a long way to go, but we’re trying to stay positive.

  • Oh gosh, I’m in tears for you guys. Sending you all the love and positive thoughts this week.

    • Thank you so much! I know that it’s been a lot tougher on us because we know what’s going on, but we’re trying to stay positive and happy just like him.

  • Christina Sotherden

    So so sorry to hear this! Pups are the biggest part of our families so I’ll definitely be sending a lot of prayers and thoughts this week.

    • Thank you so much! I seriously don’t know where we’d be without our fur babies in our families, but we’re just trying to stay as positive as possible right now.

  • Starla

    My heart aches for you. So, so sorry to hear this. I am in tears and I know there is nothing that can be said to make it better. Praying and sending lots of love. Hoping for good info from oncology! xoxo

    • Thank you so much! The good news in all of this is that he’s pretty much back to his old self, which has helped us to stay positive. We meet with oncology on Monday, and we’re just praying that it goes well.

  • girly i’m so so sorry to hear about poor dart – and it must be the toughest thing ever. i know as jack gets older i just get more stressed about these things. i am sending all the love and good vibes your way!

    xoxo cheshire kat

    • Thank you so much! I think that we always know that we’ll outlive our pets, but they’re just such a special part of our lives that it’s tough when they have to go. The good news is that Dart is already feeling like his old self after his surgery, so that’s helping us to stay positive too.

  • So sorry to hear this. I have heard wonderful things about the veterinary cancer center here in Houston, so I hope they have some ideas of things you can do!

    • We visited Gulf Coast Veterinary Center, and they have been so amazing! They actually film Animal ER there from NatGeo I think, so there were camera crews there the whole time. We have our meeting with oncology on Monday, and I’m hoping that we get some good news too!

  • Ashley, I’m so sorry. We found out a year ago that Peyton had cancer and my world came crashing down. I’m praying that you have positive results from the oncologist and that they can do something.

    • Thank you so much! Pets are just such a big part of our lives, so it really hurts when something happens to them. We have our meeting with oncology on Monday, and I’m praying that they have some good ideas on how to get everything under control too.

  • Living on Cloud Nine

    Oh Ashley, I am so very sorry! I know how much Dart means to you. You know my husband and I went to the same thing with our sweet Daisy at the end of last year, weeks and weeks of worry and finally major surgery so I know the agony your heart is going through. I will pray for the best for you all!

    • Thank you so much! I think that it’s so hard with our fur babies because they can’t tell us what’s wrong or how their feeling. I’m just glad that Chris reacted the way that he did so that we could get him in quickly enough for surgery. He’s already back to feeling like his old self though, which is definitely a positive thing!

  • Ugh, I can’t even begin to imagine what you’re going through right now. Our pooches are our whole world, aren’t they? I hope you hear some better news this week.

    • Thank you! Our fur babies really are such a big part of our lives, and it sucks when they have something happen to them and we can’t fix it. The good news is that Dart is already back to being his old self, so that’s helping us to stay positive!

  • 🙁 I’m so sorry to hear this! Pets definitely become family and imagining life without them is hard. I am hoping for the best for Dart and that your meeting with oncology goes as well as it can. *Hugs*

    • Thank you so much! We took him in on Friday to get his staples out, and already the vets were talking about how much better he’s already doing. We have our meeting with oncology on Monday, and we’re hoping that goes well too!

  • Oh no. I’m so sorry!! Take a break. Pets are family.

  • I’m so so sorry to hear this, Ashley. I know how special Dart is and I am hoping that the vets can do something for him.

    • Thank you so much! The specialists that we saw already have done so much for him, and I’m hoping that we hear some good news from oncology on Monday. So far though, he’s already back to his old self, which is helping us to stay positive through all of this!

  • I’m so so sorry about Dart — sending lots of positive vibes your way and hoping for the best. Our dogs are our babies and I can only imagine the pain your family is feeling right now. Sounds like you’re doing all you can right now, and letting him know how dearly loved he is.

    • Thank you so much! I don’t think that you realize how big of an impact they have on your lives until something happens to them. He’s definitely getting lots of cuddles and doggy treats and just being all around spoiled and I know that he’s totally eating all of that up and starting to feel better too!

  • Oh Ashley, I’m so sorry to hear this. I hope you get some positive news on Friday. I’ll be thinking about all three of you this week. <3

    • Thank you so much! We ended up having to move our appointment with oncology to Monday, but our appointment on Friday to get his staples out went really well and he’s already back to his old self!

  • oh Ashley. I am so so sorry. Fingers & toes crossed for Dart and your family. Hugs girl.

    • Thank you so much! He’s already back to feeling like his old self right now, which is a good sign and helping us to feel better too!

  • Nadine

    I hope that you get some good news from oncology. I am sending you guys all the hugs right now, because after losing Gracie last year…I know the pain all too well. Dart is lucky to have you guys through all of this.

    • Thank you! I think that we always know that we’ll outlive our pets, but it doesn’t make it any easier, does it. It feels like a part of your heart goes missing. The good news is that Dart is already starting to feel like himself, so we’re starting to feel a little more positive too!

  • Ashley, I am so so sorry. Sending you prayers and hugs. Hope your meeting on Friday brings you hope. 💜

    • Thank you! Our oncology meeting ended up getting moved to Monday, but we did get to talk with the surgeon on Friday and she really gave us so much hope and support which meant so incredibly much. She has whippets and had went through something similar with one of hers, so she definitely knew what to say to us while we’re going through all of this.

  • So many good thoughts and love to you.

    • Thank you so much! It’s been tough, but he’s already back to his old self which is helping us to feel better!

  • Erica Ashley

    I am so sorry! Prayers sent your way!!

  • Oh Ashley. My heart literally breaks for you and Chris right now. I was praying so hard for good news for you guys. I can’t even imagine what you are going through right now and I desperately hope that you guys get some good news on Friday. I wish there was anything I could say that would make this better or make this go away for Dart but I know there’s nothing. Sending you all the thoughts, prayers and love.

    • Thank you so much! It was definitely the hardest week ever last week, but after we got him home he really started to do so much better, and he’s actually back to his old self now that he’s got his staples out. We didn’t get to meet with oncology on Friday but we’ll meet with them on Monday. But we did meet with our surgeon and she had some really positive words to say to us, which really helped a lot.

  • Biana Perez

    I am so sorry Ashely…I can’t imagine what you all are going through right know – Dart is so loved by everyone in your family. I’m praying for all the good news for you guys this Friday.

    • Thank you so much! We ended up not meeting with oncology on Friday, but we will meet with them on Monday. Dart is already back to his old self though, which has really helped us to stay positive that he’s at least feeling good!

  • Oh, Ashley. I’m so sorry. Hoping for good news for Dart this week <3

  • I am literally crying my eyes out for you right now. i am SO sorry. I cannot imagine the emotions you are having right now. I have my fingers and toes crossed for good news. Sending hugs.

    • Thank you so much! I was definitely very devastated last week, but once we brought him home and he started to act like his old self I started to feel a lot more positive. We’ll find out what exactly we can do on Monday, and hopefully it’ll be good news!

  • Poor Dart Dart!! I’m so glad he’s home with yall. I remember when we took out cat Rosie to the vet a few years ago because something was wrong with her bladder, I totally lost it when I saw her sitting in the kennel in the vets office. She didn’t even need surgery or anything but just seeing her there was awful! Keep me posted on what yall find out! I’ll be thinking about all of you! xoxo

    • Thank you so much! Seeing pets hooked up to all the machines and not feeling good and not being able to tell you what’s wrong is definitely one of the hardest things ever! Dart is already starting to feel like his old self though, so it’s helping us to feel more positive about everything!

  • Oh Ashley, I am so sorry to read this post. I hope you get some good news later this week. Thinking of you and Chris and Dart and sending you tons of good vibes and hugs.

    • Thank you so much! He’s already starting to feel just like his old self, so it’s helping us to feel more positive about everything that’s going on.

  • Oh no! So sorry to hear about poor Dart :(. I hope he is comfortable and you receive the best news possible in the coming days.

    • Thank you so much! He’s definitely feeling like his old self, and didn’t understand why we wouldn’t let him go outside by himself all last week. But now that his staples are out, he’s able to do everything he wants to do!

  • Oh Ashley, I’m soo sorry! I can’t even begin to imagine how you guys are feeling. I’m praying for you guys and sending love your way <3

    • Thank you so much! After we brought him home, he definitely started to feel like his old self, and now that his staples are out, we’re loving seeing him run around and act like the crazy dog that he is! We hope to know more on Monday as far as treatment and everything though.

  • Nicole F

    I’m sorry to hear this news. I can see how important he is to your family. I am hopeful for you all.

    • Thank you so much! He’s very much our little fur baby, so we’re happy that he’s already starting to act like his old self!

  • Rachel

    Oh, Ashley. I am so sorry. I know that Dart is your baby just like Ella is mine and I cannot even imagine what you are going through. It’s good that you took him to the vet when you did and they were able to catch it when they did. I will be sending lots of love and prayers to Dart and I hope that the appointment on Friday goes well and you get some good news. Keep us posted on how the appointment goes, praying for his full recovery.

    xo, Rachel

    • Thank you so much! I can’t even think about what would have happened if Chris hadn’t taken him to the vet when he did. It definitely pays that we are so overprotective of him. The appointment with the vet went well on Friday and then we’re meeting with oncology on Monday, and I’m hoping that goes well too!

  • Kristin

    Sending many thoughts and prayers your way!
    I would hope that, if this happened to one of my dogs, they would really just know how much we love them and would do anything for them.
    I’m sure Dart knows this too. He’s lucky to have you!

    • Thank you! We’re definitely doing our best to spoil him rotten right now and get as much cuddles in as possible. He’s already on the mend and feels just like his old self, which has been very positive for us.

  • I’m so so sad your furbaby is going through this and you have to deal with such heartbreaking news. I know I would be devastated if Lola was in that situation. Stay strong and hopefully the doctors can get him cured and feeling better soon! Big hugs from FL to TX! xx

    • Thank you so much! We have our meeting with oncology on Monday, and I’m just hoping that we get some sort of positive news. The good news right now is that he’s already feeling like his old self and is acting like nothing is happening which is having a very good effect on us as well.

  • Oh, Ashley. My heart just aches for all of you. I know that Dart is so, so special to you. I’m sending all the positivity possible that things turn out okay. Hugs!

    • Thank you! Dart is already starting to feel like his old self, so we’re very happy that he’s running around and everything. We’re definitely just trying to spoil him as much as possible and give him as much love as possible.

  • Emelia Woodruff

    I’m so so sorry to hear about Dart. I’m glad you got some extra snuggles in and just take it day by day- whatever works best for you and your family 🙂 sending you love hugs and positive vibes my friend. Xo!

    • Thank you! We’ll definitely no a lot more on Monday, and hopefully we’ll hear something positive. Dart is already feeling like his old self, so that’s helping us to stay positive right now, and he’s totally getting majorly spoiled with all the doggie treats and cuddles we’re giving him!

  • Girl, I know how you feel, well, sort of. If anything were to happen to George, I’d be in pieces. I’m so glad he’s out of surgery and in better spirits. All my thoughts and prayers are with him and you two, I hope he makes a full recovery!! xx

    • Thank you so much! Pets become such a big part of our family and our lives and they have such a special place in our hearts, that it literally breaks us when something happens. Dart is very much back to his old self, so that’s helping us to feel a whole lot more positive about everything until we meet with oncology on Monday.

  • So very sorry to hear this news. I know how deep the love we have for our four legged family members can be. Enjoy every precious moment you have with him. Sending thoughts and prayers your way.

    • Thank you! They really do have such a special place in our hearts, which is why it effects us so much when something happens to us. We’ll hear more about what our options are on Monday, and all we can hope for is some sort of option. The good thing is that Dart’s already starting to feel like his old self, which is helping us to stay positive!

  • Oh friend, I am so so so so so sorry to hear this. 🙁 I hope that a miracle occurs. But I think you’re doing the right thing in spending as much time with him as possible. He knows he’s loved. Pets are so great and also impossible aren’t they? It’s so tough not to know what they are thinking or how they are feeling. But we have to know that they feel loved and cared for by their owners. Thinking of you guys and wishing you all the best. XO – Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

    • Thank you so much! It really is so tough to not know how their feeling when they’re sick, but like you said, I think that they know how much we love them as our fur babies. The very good news right now is that he’s feeling like his old self which is helping us to feel more positive and go about our everyday routine, which includes spoiling him so incredibly much with doggy treats and snuggling!

  • Ohhhh noooo! That’s absolutely awful news. I’m so sorry to hear it. I don’t care what anyone says, pets really are members of the family and losing one is no joke. I am praying for you three and hope for happy times spent together regardless of the outcome.

    • Thank you so much! They really are a huge part of our family, and it hurts so much when they have to go through anything painful because they don’t have a way to communicate it to us. He’s already feeling like his old self right now, and we’re spending a ton of time with snuggles and extra doggy treats!

  • I am so sorry, friend. That is so hard. Hoping that meeting comes with some good options for you and that you get lots of snuggles in the meantime.

    • Thank you! He’s already feeling like his old self, so we’re enjoying lots of walks and cuddles and extra spoiling. It’s definitely helping us to stay positive through all of this.

  • thinking of you guys and sending lots of love. I can only imagine how difficult of a time this is for you guys.

    • Thank you! It just all around sucks because there’s no rhyme or reason, but Dart is feeling like his normal self which is helping us to stay positive through all of this.

  • Thinking of you guys (and Barkley and Dobie send their love, too). Hopefully the appointment goes the way you want it and you have some good choices.

    • Thank you! Dart is already feeling like his old self which is helping us to stay positive through all of this, and hopefully we’ll hear some good news on Monday as well.

  • I’m so so so sorry. I know how much you love that sweet pup, and I know this is just the very worst thing. Sending thoughts and prayers your way.

    • Thank you! I know that you went through a very scary situation with your pup too, and it’s just the worst not knowing what they’re feeling or if they’re in pain. The good news is that Dart is already acting like his normal self, so that’s helping us to stay positive.

  • Oh Ashley, my heart breaks for you. I fear this beyond measure. Poor, sweet little Dart – he looks so precious wrapped up in all of that coziness. I don’t know what to say besides the fact that I understand how much your heart hurts and I am thinking good thoughts for you and for a speedy recovery for Dart. I hope for great news! He is SO LUCKY to have owners who care so much for him. I read story after story of pets just tossed aside. Hugs, hugs, hugs.

    • Thank you! That’s exactly what everybody keeps on saying, that if we hadn’t been as overprotective of Dart as we always are, then maybe things wouldn’t have turned out the way they are right now, which means that we’re getting lots of time for cuddles and snuggles and extra spoiling. So far, Dart is already back to feeling like his old self, so it’s helping us to stay extra positive right now.

  • Oh, sweet Dart! Facing the idea of losing a pet is absolutely devastating, and I know that you and your husband are hurting and confused. Know that I am thinking of you and Dart, and I hope he’s resting comfortably!

    • Thank you so much! We started him on chemo a couple of weeks ago, and so far he’s doing really great on it! It’s not going to be a cure, but w’re just thankful that we’ll have some extra time with him!

  • I’m so sorry :(. I feel upset reading about this and I can’t imagine what you guys are going through. I hope that he is doing as best as possible and that you get lots and lots of time with him. It is a hard time when you want your pet to not be hurting.

    • It was simply devastating when we found out but we’re doing really good at trying to stay as positive as possible so that he doesn’t think that anything is wrong. And overall he’s doing really well, he had his second round of chemo and it didn’t even phase him this time around. We’ve also been taking him to the country a lot which he has loved so much!