Monday, March 28, 2011

The weight is over!

We have another positive thing to report. This afternoon we took Rilley to see Dr. Ewing as we had suspected that he had an ear infection. As it turns out we were right, but as Leslie Nielsen's character in Airplane! would say, "That's not important right now." What is important is that as with any vet appointment we had to take his weight. As Dr. Pluhar would tell you, and I seriously hope she is reading this, the scale has not been friendly to our four-legged companion of late. On our last visit to Minneapolis, the brain-tumour beagle tipped the scales at close to 50 pounds! 49lbs, 10oz to be exact. However, today the scale displayed a much friendlier 45.3 pounds!  Yes, he still has a little way to go until he reaches his ideal weight but he appears to be well on his way.

Congratulations Rilley!

Rilley the therapy dog...well, sort of

Last night Rilley decided to become a therapy dog of sorts.  You see, about a week ago our 10 year old daughter suffered severe burns to her legs and feet when boiling water spilled while preparing macaroni and cheese for lunch.  After spending three days in Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children, she came home and spent a few nights sleeping with mom and dad.  Last night Rilley decided that he would help out.  He usually sleeps at the foot of the bed but he moved up and snuggled down right next to Elizabeth.
Elizabeth and Rilley...almost looking like a stuffed animal.
Could "Comfort Dog" be his new calling?
(If you look closely, you can still see a tiny bit of his surgical scar on top of his head.)
As you can see by the look on her face, this made her feel quite special.  Rilley actually stayed like that for quite some time.  We're not quite sure how long, but we do know that it is longer than he has ever cuddled like that with anyone in the house.  Elizabeth also got quite the tongue-bath from all the kisses!

Good boy Rilley!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Giving Back - Calling all media contacts

As has become evident through all of our posts and conversations with people, Rilley's survival could not have been made possible without the hard work and dedication of everyone at the University of Minnesota.  Specifically Dr. John Ohlfest and Dr. Elizabeth Pluhar.  The work done through the Brain Tumor Program and the Ohlfest Brain Tumor lab cannot happen without the generosity of donations and grants.  In fact, Rilley's study costs have been covered by the American Brain Tumor Association, for which we could never thank them enough.

In an attempt to increase awareness of the Ohlfest Brain Tumor Lab and the research being conducted, Sara and I have started our own media campaign.  We are attempting to contact, via email, as many media outlets as possible.  We have put together a one page backgrounder that we include with all of the emails.  We would like to ask that anyone with media contacts take up the cause and tell them about Rilley's story.  Sara and I are not looking for any more exposure for ourselves, we had that when Discovery Channel and the Georgetown Independent did their stories at the end of November.  We simply would like the Brain Tumor Lab to garner further attention as it could lead to further philanthropic generosity.

If you would like to help, we would greatly appreciate it.  I have made the backgrounder document available as a .pdf via Google Docs and have included some download instructions below.

Thank you,
Roy and Sara.

To access the .pdf file at Google Docs, click on the image below:
Once you reach the Google Docs page, you can download the original file by clicking on the File menu above the preview of the PDF file.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

MILESTONE: Four months seizure free!

Today marks four months since Rilley's surgery to remove the tumour and the beginning of the road to seizure free life!  It seems that as each month goes by he's doing more and more.  For example, our stairs have a small landing to the side which Rilley used to use as his perch.  A place from which he can survey the goings-on of the household.  When he began to show signs of what we now know was the tumour, he didn't hop up there anymore.  This was most likely because he wasn't steady on his feet and had become more and more sluggish.

Well, over the past month or so he seems to have rediscovered his old look-out and he takes up his surverying duties on a daily basis.  Have a look:
Keeping an eye out for trouble...or, is that for ways to get into trouble?

Ok, maybe guard duty can be a bit tiring!