So Phineas was due to have surgery in the afternoon of the 6th September. I had left him at the hospital at around 14:30. At half past five, I still had not heard anything, so I rang the vets. I was told he had not had the surgery yet. It was possible it would not be done until the following day.
In a later phone call they suggested that he stay overnight at the hospital (free of charge) to minimise stress & he would be seen in the morning. I asked if I could visit him that evening but they said all their visiting rooms were booked. Because I could not see him, I rang several times to check he was okay. Each time, I was told he was settled & that he was ‘absolutely fine’. I cannot say that *I* was feeling ‘absolutely fine’. I was in bits.
The next morning, I was told he was ‘bright & happy’. I cannot say that even this comforted me as it did not sound like Phineas. I appreciate that strangers will not know him as I do, but *I* would have felt ‘bright & happy’ had they told me he was ‘grumpy & sulky’ – a far more normal description, particularly under the circumstances. They also told me that he would be seen at 1pm the earliest. So, another long wait…
I will not log the details of what happened next as they are still too upsetting for me to share. In short, during the surgery, Phineas went into cardiac arrest & they could not revive him.
It was several days before I could even discuss the surgery with the vet. It turned out to be very complicated. She was confident that Phineas had an aggressive cancerous growth that in turn had caused a hernia. It was not a relatively simple case of ‘removal of mass’ (as expected), because his abdominal contents had spilled out & were entwined in the growth. How my poor boy even functioned was a mystery. It is likely that had he survived the surgery, he would not have had long afterwards.
Right now, I find no comfort in anything. All I know is that he was in good spirits when I left him. I wish *I* had not left him. And I dearly wish he was still here. I know from experience that time will gradually heal these feelings…. but in the meantime, I am desperately sad & missing my wonderful little friend.