Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Sometimes the simple things are hard

There are times, before attempting something that sounds very complicated for example, that I expect things to go wrong. We can anticipate difficulty when doing something different. But when something routine just goes bad, I think it hits us harder because it is so unexpected. This morning we brought Ruby for her routine checkup (and fat dog lecture). This checkup included taking some blood (for heartworm testing and a general wellness test) and some vaccines. Rabies. Bordatella (kennel cough). Something else that I think was for parvo but I am not sure. We discussed changing her food again because I am not happy with what we are buying. Ruby doesn't seem overjoyed to eat it (and pugs are overjoyed to eat june bugs and sock lint, for reference). It smells like death. I know pet food isn't meant to smell pleasant to people, but this stuff is pretty gaggable even if there is a pug on the bag and it is supposed to be tailored for piglets like her. All in all the visit went well, and we were pleased. The Vet seemed happy to see Ruby and didn't call her an abhorration of nature, always signs of a good visit. When we got home, Ruby kept coming and rubbing her face on me. She has done that before, but I mean really rubbing, and not stopping. Then she went to rub her face on the carpet. Since one of the vaccines gets placed in the nose I thought maybe she was trying to rub the scent of it off. But after a few minutes I got worried, because it was excessive and she was breathing like she was bothered. I called her name, she looked up, and her lips was swollen! In the time it took me to call DH and say "Is her lip swollen?" the other one swelled up like a balloon. I grabbed the phone and called the vet, told them what was going on, and they said to bring her in right away. Thank goodness we are about five minutes from there. By the time we got there (and I am not kidding, five minutes) her eyes were swelling almost shut and she was having trouble breathing. They gave her a shot right into her bloodstream and had us wait to see if it helped at all. It did, thank goodness! The swelling started to go down and she seemed to be breathing easier. They gave her another shot under the skin and told me to give her benedryl on a schedule. Now, she has had her face swell before. The swelling went down fast, and later that night she had breathing troubles and I brought her to the emergency vet. This time, it happened in minutes. We don't KNOW that it was her vaccines. We checked her file and it did not happen last time any time near a shot or anything. For all we know she ate the same kind of spider as last time, or got bit again by something, or who knows. After getting her home again, she seemed better for a few minutes then started acting odd again. She would walk a few steps, then drop like her front legs weren't working properly. It looked very neurological to me, and I became hysterical and called the vet again. As we were talking, I noticed she would drop then turn her legs and lick the bottoms of her paws. We think now that her paws had swelled and become itchy and she was trying to walk without them touching the floor - after watching for a few minutes (once I calmed down enough to breathe) it really seemed that was it. The vet said not to let her walk around, to make her lie down and rest. Which with Ruby means telling her we are "taking a nap", getting her squirrel, and lying with her on my chest. It worked, she relaxed and even fell asleep (I think it was the benedryl kicking in). After it was all calm again and things seemed to be okay, I threw up. Yes, sometimes I throw up from worry. My stomach gets so sore and upset when I am upset or worried or anxious and I get sick. Most of the time it doesn't happen until everything is over and done with though. Kind of like people who are good in a crisis, then cry when it is all over? Like that. And in the process I think I managed to burst an ovarian cyst. I was standing there, tears streaming down my face, burst blood vessels all over my eyes, a pool of blood forming at my feet next to the puffy faced dog when DH came in to see if I was okay. Note to self - even if I think I am just going to get sick, close and lock the bathroom door. When he saw the state of me, he had his OWN hysteria I think. I was trying to explain what was happening but I strained my voice the other day and throwing up did not help and my abdomen felt like it was being hit with a jackhammer and I suddenly noticed I had a whopper of a low-sugar headache. It was futile, there was no way to calm him down, I had to just wait him out. And eventually he stopped to take a breath and I explained I was NOT dying. And while I may seem to be in a bad way, it was nothing some feminine products, some sugar, and a change of clothes couldn't fix. I had him call my doctor though, because last time a cyst burst I did lose a lot of blood and there were problems. I have strict, official instructions not to bleed to death, by the way. Nice of him to do that over the phone. Ruby seems fine now but we have to keep a close eye on her (and keep up the benedryl for now) and I clean up pretty good so we are none the worse for wear by outward appearance. Well, except for the dots around my eyes. Weak blood vessels suck. After it was all said and done, DH said it is a pity we never took a picture of our doodlebug with her face all puffed up, but really, the camera was the last thing on my mind. It is raining here, and when we rushed her back to the vet I didn't even stop to put my shoes on! I feel a touch better after eating some apple slices, but still not completely better, and I have so much work to do that now I have to do it tonight. DD will not be pleased. I'll have to tell her, that sometimes the simple things are harder than we expect.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

My GOODNESS!!! I'm so relieved for all of you!.... i've been checking for today's blog & wondering where on earth you're hiding... working or whatever... So relieved that Ruby and you are both doing ok.... Allergic reactions are soooo scary! not to mention blood on the floor to DHs!!

The Cookbook Junkie said...

As the mother of a child with a serious food allergy, I'm always freaked out by allergic reaction stories. I hope Ruby is okay and I hope you're okay. What a night!

Julie said...

sending gentle hugs to dances and wooby! :-)

Anonymous said...

Oh, Dances! I am sorry so sorry about the rough times you and Ruby had. Happy to hear that you are both better. I don't blame you for getting so frightened. I would have too. Of course, you still made me laugh with your description of your DH's reaction.

Mary

Anonymous said...

Oh my what a day!! Glad all is better.

sandy

Lisa said...

I think I would have dropped dead of a heart attack! And to go thru this twice!!! How old is Ruby? Sometimes a vet will do a titer test to see if the dog really needs the shot or has built up an immunity. Check into that. Also-does she really need the bordatella (nose vaccine)??? I don't recall her ever going to a kennel, doesn't she stay with family??? I wonder if they can do allergy testing on her. Her reaction got alot worse. Some people have a real bad reaction to latex-was she exposed to it thru gloves at the vets. I wonder if they have epi pens for dogs. I worry about what would happen if you weren't close to the vets or if it was a weekend. Glad she is better now.

DancesInGarden said...

Ruby will be 4 (although we got her on Mother's day so I use that as her birthday, and I guess technically she is 4 lready because she would have been born in what, March?).

Kennel cough is a real epidemic around here, and if you ever have your dog groomed/bathed or go to places where they can encounter other dogs it is recommended.

This area is also high for parvo and heartworm infections.