A few weeks back I was at Bayview Dog Park (Rowland Reserve) trying out a new lens for my camera. I was looking for dogs splashing around in the water at the bay. Buffy was the only dog actually in the water. I approached Louise, Buffy's owner, introduced myself, and asked if I could photograph Buffy in the water, (those photos appear here) , Louise agreed, and as we talked she told me Buffy was to under go her second surgery for brain tumour the following week.
I will let Louise continue as she tells Buffy's Story.
My husband got Buffy, our Dalmatian, for me as a gift from Douglas park in 2004.
When we went to choose a puppy (9 in her litter) she ran and jumped on my back, picking me more than me picking her.
Buffy had a very happy, uneventful life, swimming almost daily, faster than any dog I've ever seen.
In June 2012 she suffered a seizure. We suspected a brain tumour, she had an MRI scan which confirmed it. She entered a chemotherapy trial for about 2 months that was unsuccessful, so with little choice we proceeded with surgery at The Small Animal Specialist Hospital at North Ryde (SASH). They told us it would be “risky” surgery. In the two months leading up to surgery she had three grand mal seizures (despite being on anti epileptic medication) as well as many nights of twitching and pacing the house.
On the night before her surgery, we were playing with her outside SASH and she started barking and pulling us toward SASH. To us it seemed she desperately wanted to go there, like she knew she needed their help. This is something I've never witnessed with her before.
Her surgery went well, despite a collapsed lung (from lack of movement) and she came home 10 days later. She was given 7-12 months to live, post surgery. It was a fairly long recovery, with her being essentially back to normal after 2 months.
Buffy has had an extra 4 years of life which we never thought would happen, and with no seizures at all.
Fast forward to recently in 2016, almost to the day of her very first 2012 seizure, one night she had a familiar pacing and twitching episode. I think we knew the tumour was back but wanted to hope that it wasn't. We left it a few days hoping for the best, however sure enough she had more of these episodes, never actually progressing to a grand mal seizure.
About a week after the first episode we went to SASH and Buffy had another MRI scan which confirmed the return of her tumour. SASH, my husband and I all felt Buffy was is great condition, not appearing like a twelve year old dog at all, so we decided to do go ahead with surgery again.
Buffy had her second brain surgery on the 21.09.2016 and is a miracle dog. The surgeon called us with good news that surgery went well and she was even up, walking around outside later that same evening, something they had never seen after such major surgery.
She did suffer 2 minor seizures 24 hours post surgery but these have since ceased (she is still medicated though, as she has been since 2012). Buffy came home 5 days later. Her recovery has been incredible and we're so happy to have her home and are SO grateful to all those who have looked after her and made this possible.