“It’s cold out.  I think I will wear my window-breaker.”  Akemi, August 23 2011.

Early this morning, we were back at the University of Guelph Small Animal Hospital for Maximus’s 3rd (of 5) radiation treatments and anti-cancer vaccine. Needless to say, my boy was less than enthusiastic…

Maximus looking all anxious heading into this third radiation treatment.

There have been some notable changes in Maximus over the past month.  Beside the obvious – lethargy, loss of appetite – he’s become unusually needy. Apparently, if we’re all in the car and I pop out to get something, he’ll cry until I come back.  He used to do this all the time back when he was a puppy, and it’s unusual to hear he’s suddenly doing it now.

Bummed.

Anyway, like I said, his Maximus’s appetite has been off of late.  He’s no longer the voracious eater he used to be, polishing off his meal before the rest of the pack were halfway through theirs.  Lately, he’s been turning his nose up at dog food and so Akemi has been making him simmered chicken breast that he’ll happily consume so long as its shredded and fed to him by hand.  The radiation oncologist told us that the treatment may affect his olfactory sense and suggested we try sprinkling parmesan on his food.  That or serve him scrambled eggs. Akemi tried the latter this afternoon and that did the trick.  Apparently, he scoffed them down like his old self.

Contemplating matters.

According to the radiation oncologist, the tumor is shrinking.  A hopeful sign.  The aim is to get it to divide and die, a process that – if successful – may not come about for months after the completion of the therapy.

Anyway, Maximus was in great spirits when we picked him up later that day.  I dropped him and Akemi off, then headed to the office where I found some mail awaiting me.  First –

An awesome get well card from PBMom, Jeff, and Patrick. Maximus thanks you!

And then –

A Pugs Not Drugs t-shirt from my friend Kellie!

A HUGE thank you to both.

Oh, by the way.  With time to kill while we waited for Maximus to complete that morning’s treatment, we headed over to the nearby mall where we strolled the aisles of the neighborhood dollar store.  I couldn’t resist snapping a pic of this –

I'm no expert but...

Fan Expo this weekend – from what I hear, the biggest con after Comic Con and The Big Apple Comic Con.  I’m thinking of going on Saturday to check out the supervillain statues.

And heckle Michael Shanks who’ll be making an appearance along with his lovely wife Lexa.

Finally, I leave you tonight with a pic of mom’s cat, Baby, after bath time.

Cute, no?

Today’s entry is dedicated to blog regular Das and everyone affected by Hurricane Irene’s approach.  Stay safe!

53 thoughts on “August 25, 2011: Maximus’s Radioactive Road Trip III! In my mailbox! Baby!

  1. Thanks, Joe. I really don’t know what to do. The coast is threatened with wind, rain and tides, and inland is bracing for major flooding. So, do I want to have a tree fall on me, or drown? Ugh. We’d have to drive about 3-5 hours west to get away from this thing…with cats. Yeeeeah. We’re going to decide in the morning – there’s a mandatory evacuation starting at 8 am, so we better get on the road early because there’s only two main roads out of South Jersey, and one of them is just a two lane road for a good part of the way. Already the GSP is a parking lot with all the tourists leaving, and I really don’t want to ride this thing out in the middle of the highway. This so totally sucks.

    das

  2. oh my, that last picture is too funny and too terrifying! Speaking of terrifying, I recently got a Stargate clock. Since it’s gone on the wall, my dog has intermittendly taken to growling in her throat, looking at the wall the clock hangs on, and eventually retreating from the room. Then all is well for hours or days before the act is repeated. Gotta love animals.
    Speaking of animals, sounds like Maximus has figured out how to get the most out of his unfortunate condition. Home cooked, hand fed meals? I would be so lucky…I do hope the word continues to be good on the tumor’s shrinking, and that Max continues to feel and act better.
    One more day off, then back to work. Just in time for the hurricane. Expecting winds of around 40mph around here, and several inches of rain. At least we’re only catching a glancing blow this far inland. Have to wait and see how tht translates in terms of how much time I have to spend outdoors. With luck no fires, no houses with trees falling on them, and no medical emergencies. To all those folks further north, especially around NYC, take care of yourselves and get out of the way of this thing if you can. If not, make sure to get the supplies to weather it, and a means to call for help.
    Thanks for the regular posts and hope Toronto provides a more pleasant weekend than we’ll be enjoying.

  3. @Das: Get out tonight! Tomorrow will be bumper to bumper! Stay safe!

    Hi Joe! Glad to hear Max is doing so well! Love the picture of Baby. 🙂

  4. Heckle Shanks a little for me, please. Ask him if he ever got around to taking Spanish lessons. Tell him “the lady from Barcelona by way of Texas” wants to know.

  5. I thought that Maximus looked bummed until I saw the picture of Baby! Poor thing. Is that a lion cut? Good news that Max’s tumor continues to shrink.

    Das, I hope that you’re able to round up the kitties and get safely away from any danger. It’s been many years since a major hurricane has made it this far inland, but I remember just how terrifying it can be. Material things can be replaced, lives cannot.

    Nola S.

  6. For my friends in the way of H. Irene: Let someone outside the evacuation zone know of your plans, and tell other family/friends to contact that person for updates. Telecommunications will be busy at best and disrupted at worst.

  7. @ Deni – That’s the problem, it already IS bumper to bumper with tourists fleeing. This has been an ongoing debate in our area – how do you evacuate 600,000 people with only two dinky roads?! We would have a third route out if someone had bothered to repair a major bridge that has been out of commission for about 10 years. All this time they’ve hemmed and hawed, and now it’s come back to bite them in the arse. Right now you can’t even get close to a gas station. I’m going to bed soon, will wake up around 2 am and see what it looks like. If things have quieted down, we might try to hit the road soon after.

    das

  8. @Das

    Good luck. I am gutting it out too… a decision I hope I don’t regret, but I am not willing to give up my Barclay’s tickets Friday and Monday (assuming they delay the round).

    Best wishes,

    Bryan

  9. @das – Whether you stay or bolt, just remember, we all will be thinking of you.

    @Joe – Remember what I asked you earlier. Give Lexa a big kiss for me. Just tell Akemi it’s not for you, it’s for an internet friend.

    Elminster

  10. Oh poor Baby, I tried not to give my cats baths unless they picked up fleas somewhere, they do tend to resist them.. I can remember feeding our dogs scrambled eggs and chicken, but beware fingers getting in the way when they would take the food. such fond memories,
    Have fun at the con, what kind of food will they have?
    @das, be safe, and hopefully you will be back in your own home soon, cats and all.

  11. That is seriously a picture of your mom’s cat!! Too funny!!
    My thoughts are with Max as always 🙂
    I will be skipping Fan Expo this year and heading to the CNE on Saturday. I head back to work on Monday 🙁 I’m enjoying not working!!

    @Das: hope you and your family are safe!

    @PBMom: you & Patrick did a great job on the card!

  12. Das: I need to post a picture of what the evacuation in Interstate 45 looked like during the evacuation for, I think it was Rita. They closed down one side of the freeway so both sides were going north only. Now they’ve created contralanes at points where they can do that without figuring the on-off ramp mess on the wrong side of the freeway. It just becomes a massive 12 lane, 10 lane, 8 lane, 6 lane and eventual 4-lane evacuation plan (as you head further north from the Gulf. People got stranded on the road and took side streets and people opened their houses up to complete strangers. That made my heart feel good. My sister in Toms River has not called me back yet. I guess I need to make another call. Jeff has 3 sisters, mom, dad in NJ; I have aunt/sister. Then there are extended family members from NJ, NY to CT.

    @Joe: I am so glad Max liked the card. Remember what I said in a previous post about Trevor’s card: “Dinosaurs make everything better.” Then we completely changed themes to golden retriever on the inside. He does best with pasting stuff or stuff already sticky. Of course we had to do little bits over several days because his tolerance level of arts & crafts is very low. What 15-year-old LIKES arts and crafts, you know?

    I am so glad to hear the good report and that he is liking the scrambled eggs. Good protein and something soft. I think it is okay to spoil him more than you already do.

    @Akemi says: Very funny.

    @Gilder: Good suggestions from a hurricane pro.

    As far as the stamp tampons? The giraffe head might work.

    The cat, Baby, wow, I’ve had hair days like that.

  13. I enjoyed the Akemi quote, it put a smile on my face. Keep them coming.

    One of these days I’m going to check out a comicon event, though I’m not one to dress up (Cosplay).

    Well I hope things continue to improve for Maximus, if dogs can look forward to something, I bet he is looking forward to being done with the treatment process.

    “Beside the obvious – lethargy, loss of appetite – he’s become unusually needy.”

    This describes how I’ve felt for the last 3 days..Everything but the needy, that could change though. Trying to get used to the entire 3rd shift thing, sleeping during the HOT day time is far and few in between. I have Friday and Saturday off, yay I get to sleep.

    @ pbmom: Already got my vitamin D supplements, and you’re right, everyone that I’ve talked to said it will take some time to move into the new schedule.

    All those who are in the hurricane zone, stay safe and be smart.

  14. I have never seen a more pathetic cat photo. Poor Baby! Re: Maximus and food, I have a human friend who is recovering from a bone marrow transplant who swears by egg drop soup. Maybe it works for doggies, too?

    Mr. Noelm works at a marina in Maryland, and they have been working very hard to pull as many boats out of the water as they can. We live inland in DC, and so don’t have to worry much about flooding here. But I feel for those along the coast. Good luck, Das!

  15. (((((Maximus))))) Praying that the tumor shrinks and disappears completely. Poor Maximus. Just wanna give him a big hug and kiss. 🙂 Love the ‘Pugs Not Drugs’ shirt! Very cute! 🙂

    I live in NJ, and looks like Irene is heading out way. I just hope she loses much power and is reduced a tropical storm. Many of our shore areas are being evacuated. I’m more inland. So hopefully where I am, we won’t get hit too hard. It’s just so scary watching all the news people on TV go frantic, and telling what you need to do…’just in case.’ I know many stores will be bombarded tomorrow with people in panic mode. All those on the East Coast in the path of Irene, stay safe.

  16. Glad to hear Maximus is doing well and getting lots of TLC. He has a great parent.

    Akemi’s quote kills me. Especially the, “It’s cold out.” part. “It’s cold out.” I’m so jealous. It’s hotter than hell here! Dry as a bone. So dry shrubs, trees, and livestock are dying. With no rain, you can’t water them enough. Grass fires are catching homes on fire and scorching lots of land. Small towns are out of water. Lakes are drying up and exposing submerged cars with human remains long since missing. In three more days it will officially be the hottest summer on record. Tomorrow will be day number 60 of temps 100+. A normal summer averages about 14 days of 100’s. And the seven day forecast:

    104 104 105 103 100 101 102

    @ Das – whatever you decide to do, I’ll be praying for you and your family’s safety, and everyone else along the east coast.

    @ PBMom – you tell Patrick he did a great job! His card is very professional looking and beautiful. I love the color.

    I hope I don’t have bad dreams tonight because of that cat. Baby is much nicer looking when dry.

  17. Keep hanging in there Maximus! 🙂

    I’m in Philadelphia and looking forward to seeing lots of trees blown over this weekend and the power going out. Wish I could find those imbeciles who think that planting all those trees under power lines are a good idea…, I’d punch them out because when the power goes out, so does the internet of course, which is pretty much my life. 🙁 LoL 🙂

  18. Have a lot to catch up on in comments but I hope everyone is safe.

    Can I put that picture of Baby on your ‘Joseph Mallozzi: FAQ’ page on my blog? It needs updating and that is gold. For some reason those eyes remind me of Stripe from Gremlins.

  19. Poor East Coast America is getting slammed with an earthquake and then a hurricane in one week. Everyone must be wondering what they did to piss off the Big Guy. Hopefully, like the earthquake, the hurricane doesn’t amount to too much.
    I second the:
    @Das: hope you and your family are safe!

    @PBMom: you & Patrick did a great job on the card!

    Joe, if you go to heckle Shanks, please video tape it so we can all witness the awesome exchange. Shanks is fun to tease. I know, I’ve done it at a couple of Creation cons.

    Did I mention how awesome it would be to have Frank and John Cassini in your show? Really…really, awesome…really.

    Best doggie dinner ever…chicken livers, cheese chunks and hot dog pieces. My sisters dogs love this special sick dog dinner. I hope Max feels better soon.

    Patricia

  20. Just had to comment on Baby. It’s a darn good thing Baby can’t speak or I’m sure your mom’s ears would be bleeding from the @#%!@&^#%!&@^# language!

    So glad Max’s treatments seem to be helping.

    I’m lucky enough to live in San Diego county, so we attend the Comic Con every year. We also have the privilege of evacuating every few years due to fires. Just try to evacuate 45,000 people with only one lane on one road open! (The other roads were on fire.)

  21. Great news on Maximus, keeping all crossable parts crossed on his behalf; and thoughts and prayers too.

    @Das – yeah what Deni said. If you are going to leave – don’t wait. Dealing with the “parking lot” is not going to make you happy.
    And, it is not worth that aggravation to “stay home” just a little longer.

    @all the coastline friends and family, be safe!

    and all I can say to the last picture is: oh, poor baby. OMGosh.

    @Joe and Akemi – please make a regular part of the daily blog a section for Akemi’s Gems….cause they are tooo cute.

    Thanks for the baby and the baby pics (cat and dogs).

  22. And heckle Michael Shanks who’ll be making an appearance along with his lovely wife Lexa.

    i would love to see video of that.

    best of luck to those in the path of the hurricane.

    glad maximus is eating something.

  23. @Das and everyone on the East coast — Please stay safe! Das, I second the stinky fish that Deni recommended, whether for old lady kitty (to get her into a carrier) or feral kitties. Am praying that the ‘cane heads back out to sea.

    The pic of Baby apres bath is Internet gold. It would be perfect for one of those hilarious “De-Motivation” posters.

    Aww, poor little feller…. Maximus is just afraid and not sure what’s going on. Love on him extra good. You both are great dog parents. Thank goodness he is eating. Looking forward to hearing more good news as time goes on.

    Maggiemayday, er, Anti M — Lob quick funny stories from Burning Man at us whenever you can. Always enjoy your stories. Safe travel.

    Yesterday we lost one of our feral kittens. Little One was my favorite and she was a sweetheart. Was going to post about it on Saturday, but don’t want to throw anything more upsetting into the mix, with the hurricane coming. Maybe next week…

  24. That picture of the washed cat is now my desktop background!
    Thanks for sharing that one!

    Best wishes fot maximus!

    Jasper

  25. Hello! 🙂 How are you?

    Go Maximus! courage! courage! Dozens of people support you!! It’s nice for all the gifts you receive for him, I’m sure if he could he would say a big THANK YOU!

    These stamps are amazing !!… I think qu’Akemi think like me;)

    This cat looks a bit like Gizmo… well a strange Gizmo lol!

    Big hugs!
    Anais

    Ps: you’re not dreaming, this message is in English 🙂 !

  26. – Akemi quotes ROCK!
    – Joe, give Max a scratch behind the ears for me. I keep him in my thoughts daily.
    – Baby is um…adorable?
    – @ das: Good luck darlin. We’ve battened down the hatches: Plenty of beer, food, batteries, ice, candles and charcoal. If you make your way to the Berlin area, post it here. Maybe we and the spouses can grab a drink.
    – I want to have shirts made: “I survived the Apocahurriquake – 2011”

  27. @das — you are far south of me in our great Garden State, however I am less than 10 miles inland from the coast, near Sandy Hook. Gulp.
    I plan to stay home and hope for the best. If any of my backyard trees fall, here’s hoping it’s away from my house. Good luck to you das if you do decide to evacuate.

    @Joe — glad Max is being such a brave boy with his roadtrips and that the treatments are having the hoped for result. Yeah, I wouldn’t mind being hand fed yummy food either. God bless him.

    Good thoughts and positive vibes are accepted from all of you not directly impacted by Irene. Thank so much, in advance!

    2cats

  28. One last wave, a pat and a hug for Max, and thoughts of safety for all in Irene’s path.
    Hugs for LoB, so hard to lose kitties, even the feral ones we don’t snuggles.

  29. @ForTheLoveofBeckett I’m sorry to hear about your cat. Hugs to you.

    I’m keeping my eye on Irene. Finally talked with my sister in Toms River & it sounds like they are staying put as are all the other family members in northern NJ, NY, LI, NYC, CT, etc.

  30. Joe – Akemi is a woman of wisdom. She has a great way of looking at the world and bringing it down to the nuts and bolts of a situation.

    Yes, I agree with others, Max needs extra love and attention right now. It’s good that you’ve found something he’s willing to eat. Keeping his strength will be very important to his recovery. Good to here the treatments are working. I’m sending him extra hugs.

    To all of you in the path of the hurricane — You are in our thoughts. Stay safe. This is something that is better to be prepared for even if nothing happens than ignoring it (like people in the South do for snowstorms — ignore it, I mean).

    PBMom — The card was adorable. Patrick did a great job!

    Whoa Baby! I think you could sell posters with that or get Baby on lolcatz. Reminds me of the Mad Bluebird posters. What kind of cat is Baby?

  31. Hugs to Max, Bryan M. White & Das! I’ve always wanted to live on the coast but …..

    That was a good Akemi saying but my favorite is “Jesus Crisis”. Hubby liked that one best as well.

    PBmom: love the card! Tell Patrick how cool we thought it was 😀 .

  32. Unfortunately his sudden seperation anxiety is normal given his age and condition. Normally that’s the kind of thing I’d say get him to the vet quick-like on, as it can often be a sign in more senior dogs that something is wrong. The good news is that you’re already well aware of what’s ailing him and he’s half-way through the treatment. He seems like a tough little guy though and I figure its a good sign that he’s in high-spirits following his treatment.

  33. To all on the east coast, I just heard the weather channel compare Irene when it becomes a cat 2 to what Ike was at a cat 2. I lived through Ike. You do not want to stay along the coast if Irene is doing an Ike.

    Here is Bolivar Penisula, off Galveston. The route of evacuation was cut off more than 12 hours before the storm even hit. Hundreds of people drowned. You can see hardly any houses survived:

    http://www.twitpic.com/hgrj8

    Galveston did not fare well either. It was weeks before they even let people back into the city to see their houses. They had mandatory evacuations and a lot of people did not heed it because of the false alarm with Hurricane Rita and the massive traffic jam.

    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE my friends, If this is like Hurricane Ike because of the storm being so large and will make landfall at a cat 2, evacuate.

  34. @2cats – It’s all well and dandy that the trees fall away from the house, but that only means they’re coming back at you when you’re on the other side of the hurricane… really, it’s best to leave if at all possible.

    Good luck to everyone on the East Coast.

    Elminster

  35. Poor Baby. And then you post the shamed picture.
    Glad the food change is helping Maximus eat. We always use parmesan or even a LITTLE garlic powder to entice sick dogs.
    When I saw BABY though, I thought you were having one. (Don’t ban me for that thought.)
    I am late reading because we got pretty gutting news yesterday– BIL is only 58 and was dx with 4th stage cancer, 3 lymph nodes involved and in his collar bone. Ave life expectancy 8 months if not already in his brain. One of the good guys, have always told my sister to clone him for the rest of us. His poor daughter by 1st marriage already lost her mom, now she and my niece lose him. He has scan today to see if in brain–if it is no one will do anything but palliative care (he saw 3 specialists)– if not one agreed to aggressive treatment “as long as he wanted it.” (ie. til he accepts the inevitable). I hate the C word.

  36. @Debra–so sorry to hear about your BIL. Just got word that my uncle’s cancer has spread so much that there’s not much hope for him, although the doctor is still willing to treat him.

    @Das and everyone on the east coast–good luck as you make plans for Irene. My family in the DC metro area are trying to get all the last minute preparations made before the storm arrives. My thoughts are with all of you.

    On a lighter note, that picture of Baby is the funniest thing I’ve ever seen.

  37. safe wishes for everone that lives on the water during Irene,

    & best wishes Maximus.

    @Joe yesterday syfy engler tweet answer to ‘will there be another SG movie’ question intimated that Brad Wright was ‘concerned about dvd sales’ have you talked to Brad or heard any SG news lately?

    @PBMom excellent card

    Cheers!

  38. um ‘everyone’ not everone. Jesus crises @Das is rubbing off on my proofing skills.

    oh & supercongrats re BAMA JOB

  39. I knew it. I knew that picture of Baby would give me bad dreams. Last night I dreamed my younger brother came to me and said, “I think there is something wrong with my teeth.” He smiled and I was shocked at what I saw. He had a dog’s mouth and teeth. The front top fangs were laying down across the littlier teeth between them and were pointing at each other. I said (and I quote), “Oh my gosh! That’s not suppose to be like that! Get to the vet immediately!” Then I woke up. Thanks Joe and Baby. Thanks a lot.

    Joe, would you please post a picture of Jason Momoa as Ronon for me…(season 2 – 4) ….

  40. @Debra Oh Debra, I am so sorry for this. May I suggest something. Cancer Treatment Centers of America. We have MD Anderson Cancer Center here, but my boss’ husband was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer and was given at the most 6 months. The drug MD Anderson wanted to use had a 75% chance it would actually kill him. They refused it. They tried some alternative medicine/Chinese herbals for awhile out in a place in Phoenix and then went to CTCA. Someone from Patrick’s school has ovarian cancer and goes to the same place for her treatment. My boss (also a Debra) was able to have 4 more quality years with her husband, far more than they ever had hope for. There were metastases all over his body, too. Wonderful people there. A holistic approach (body,mind and spirit) that is just incredibly unique.

  41. Thanks to maggiemayday, PBMom, and Deni for the good wishes. Wednesday was a hard day.

    @Debra Am so sorry about the cancer diagnosis for your brother-in-law. When they’re such good people, the “in-law” business goes out the window, doesn’t it? He’s your brother, and this is a terrible blow for all of you. Saying prayers…

    @PBMom When I see the beautiful card Patrick made with you, wow… One year ago it might not have been possible. Look at the difference his new school, and his Mom and Dad, have made this past year. It’s stunning. This is the payoff for all the years of fighting for Patrick, a new life and new possibilities for him.

    @Ponytail Feel for ya in the fiery furnace down there. How do people in Texas cope? You could go see the Conan move this weekend and watch Jason Momoa in action. That might help. 🙂

    Joe, how’s Maximus today? More hugs and pets and (virtual) yummies sent his way.

  42. I echo Marjoral and others…. Keep fighting Max! Prayers are lifted daily for his recovery and victory over this illness!

    If I may impose, could you please post advice on which media player I should be using to be able to view your videos once again. I have windows media player, Quick Time and Roxio, and I can’t figure out what changed that won’t let them play for me now! Any help would greatly appreciated. Thank you

    Pat 😛

  43. I read the title originally as Feeling Iogy (capital I) and wasn’t sure I wanted to read the rest. In hurricane prep mode right now and rather a’dither since the dividing line between tropical storm warning and tropical storm watch is the Merrimack River which I can hit from my yard with a forceful blob of spittle if I was so inclined. Many positive thoughts and well wishes for Maximus. Gotta love that boy…

  44. My family and I are all following Maximus journey and we all have our fingers crossed for him xxxhugxxx

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