Saturday, January 2, 2016

Scout (April 28, 2008 to December 29, 2015)

Scout passed away last Tuesday evening. The hopes we had that the pancreatic tumor could be surgically removed and that Scout would return to his old self were not met. The surgeon called us just fifteen minutes after beginning the procedure to tell us that the tumor was not on his pancreas but on a lymph node in the same area, that it had grown significantly since the ultrasound, and that it was located in an area where it would be impossible to remove it successfully. He said our options were to have Scout closed up and hope that he survived recovery to live out his final days as he was before the surgery, or to have him put to sleep on the operating table. In my imagined list of possible outcomes, this was the worst one possible.

Nan and I took a few brief, tearful minutes and decided that the most humane thing we could do was to request that Scout be put to sleep, as much as it pained us to lose him so suddenly. I couldn't believe that our wonderful seven-year-old dog could go from being healthy and happy to being gone from this earth in less than six weeks. That is the terrible unfairness of cancer.

To those who knew him, Scout was a special dog, so friendly and playful and goofy, more a big puppy than a mature dog. He was kind with adults, children, other dogs, even cats, but not with squirrels. We loved him and he loved us so much in return. He will live in our hearts forever.