doggie chew toy

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I can’t even think of a witty title (or, indeed, a non-witty title) for this post- that’s the kind of week it’s been.

And, I mean, it hasn’t been ALL bad. Rubin made it through his operation on Tuesday, for one thing, and that’s definitely something to be grateful for. It seems that Wednesday’s optimism, and all of that, “Yay, he’s almost totally back to normal now!” stuff I posted that day was just a little premature, though. Big surprise, right?

He WAS doing really well when I wrote that post, to be fair. He was eating, he was playing with his toys… we took him round to Terry’s mum’s for a visit, and everyone commented on how well he seemed, especially considering he’d had surgery the day before. We really felt he was on the mend, and that everything was going to be just fine.

Later that night, though, he started crying… and he basically didn’t stop for the next 2 days. By the time we got up on Thursday morning, it was really obvious that something wasn’t right. Rubin was wide awake when we went down to get him, and he didn’t sleep AT ALL for the rest of that day. Instead, he just sat there with his head pointing towards the ceiling, in obvious distress. He wouldn’t eat any of his dog food or treats: he DID eat some cooked chicken we bought for him, and also some cheese, but his breathing was short and fast, he still wouldn’t stop crying, and, above all, he STILL wouldn’t sleep, even although it was obvious he needed to.

In fact, not only was he refusing to sleep, we couldn’t even get him to lie down: every time we tried, he’d just get right back up again, and resume his head-pointing-towards-the-ceiling position. Every so often, he’d get so tired he’d drift off for  a few seconds, at which point his front legs would give way, and he’d fall to the floor – only to get right back up, and resume staring.

It was absolutely awful.

Between his poor, shaven neck, his alarmingly large scar, and his huge, pleading eyes, it was just absolutely heartbreaking to see him like that. We tried everything we could think of to try to calm him down and get him to sleep, but nothing worked, so we jumped back into the car and headed back to the vet’s, who checked him over, and found nothing physically wrong with him. His wound was healing well, his temperature was normal… “It’s either the effects of the anaesthetic,” he told us, “Or he’s still in some pain from the operation.” So he prescribed some painkillers, warned us it might take 24 hours for them to work, and told us to come back tomorrow if they didn’t.

They didn’t.

When we got home, Rubin went right back into his “staring at the ceiling” routine, and Terry and I became absolutely frantic with sheer helplessness. There really seemed to be absolutely nothing we could do to comfort him or make him feel better, and although we managed to get him to swallow the first of the pills when we got home, when it was time to take the second, he resolutely refused everything we offered him, no matter how hard we tried to coax him.

I don’t think any of us got much sleep that night. Rubin was still refusing to even lie down, and when we brought him into our bedroom he was so unsettled there he wouldn’t even sit still, so we moved him down to the office, with Terry and I getting up to check on him every couple of hours. Every time we went down, there he was still sitting bolt upright and staring at the ceiling. We honestly didn’t think he was going to make it through the night – it was that bad.

Yesterday morning, though, we went down to the office, opened the door… and there he was, lying on his side, fast asleep for the first time in almost 48 hours. We could have cried with relief. He had an appointment with the vet for a checkup that day anyway, and by the time we got there, he was almost his old self again. He was, however (and I hesitate to even mention this, for fear of internet diagnosis), breathing faster than usual, which the vet was concerned about. She checked him over carefully, and at the moment her best guess is that it might be some kind of problem with his heart – which is obviously the last thing we wanted to hear.

She couldn’t actually detect any kind of problem just from listening to his heart, however, so she’s given us some more pills to try him on for a week. If that doesn’t work, she tells us the next step would be to do a chest x-ray, which would involve sedating him again – something we REALLY want to avoid, given how badly he seemed to react to it the first time. So, at the moment, its just a case of “wait and see” basically. On the plus side, we can see quite a big improvement in Rubin this morning again, so we’re really hoping that will continue, and it’ll all turn out to be nothing too serious. In the meantime, well, suffice to say that Terry and I still aren’t getting a whole lot of sleep – a situation not helped by the fact that we’ve both come down with some sort of chest infection/bug this week. It never rains…

Anyway, right now I’m just REALLY glad it’s the weekend, and that we’re all here to enjoy it. How about you?

COMMENTS
  • OH Amber…I’m pretty sure I didn’t take a single breath when I read this. What you’ve all been through this week sounds so distressing. It does take time for the residual effects of the drugs to wear off…I’m so hopeful it’s just a matter of time before Rubin feels 150% again!

    September 24, 2016
  • Annabelle

    REPLY

    I’m very sorry about Rubin being in such pain.
    I hope he will be healthy soon and that it’s only a strange reaction to the anaesthetic that put him in such distress. It’s so hard for you both to see him like this.

    September 24, 2016
  • Maria

    REPLY

    So sorry to read this, have fingers crossed for a positive outcome for you. It’s so heart rending when pets are ill and you can’t help them.

    September 24, 2016
  • I have spent thousands of dollars and many 2ams at the emergency vet, so I completely understand the anxiousness that comes with pet’s health 🙁 🙁 I get so panicked once my cats are not acting right I don’t care what time it is, so there are a few times I have acted a little too over protective… don’t care, worth it.

    I really hope Rubin is just a little distressed and will be fine very soon!

    September 24, 2016
  • Poor little dude – what an exhausting chain of events. Wishing you all calmer days and hoping Rubin is back on track very soon. xx

    September 24, 2016
  • Oh, I’m so sorry – what an awful week for you all. I’ve got my fingers tightly crossed that he’s back to his normal self soon. x

    September 24, 2016
  • I’m so sorry about everything you, Terry and Rubin have been through. I hope Rubin be all better soon! And I hope you and Terry will get over your bug quickly, too!

    I hope everyone gets lots of rest this weekend!

    September 24, 2016
  • The Other Emma

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    Hoping things improve for you all soon, it’s awful when there is something wrong with them and they can’t tell what it is. Mind yourselves.

    September 24, 2016
  • Oh no! It’s been the week for sad dog stories 🙁 but yours will have a happy ending, I know it will. He’s just been through an ordeal, he’ll get there! Poor Rubin though, it just sucks that they can’t communicate what’s wrong doesn’t it 🙁

    September 25, 2016
  • Oh no. I was worrying all the way through this post. Poor little boy, and poor you and Terry. Hopefully the rapid breath is just an after effect of the surgery. Maybe it will wear off. Fingers crossed. Xx

    September 25, 2016
  • I’m sorry to hear that you’ve had such a stressful and worrying time. I hope that you and Terry start to feel better and manage to relax a bit this weekend, and that Rubin continues to improve. x

    September 25, 2016
  • Maria

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    Thinking of you all , and sending positive thoughts xx

    September 25, 2016
  • D. Johnson

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    I hope that Monday finds all three of you well and rested. Prayers!

    September 25, 2016
  • Nickolina Jacoby

    REPLY

    As much as I enjoy reading regular posts, please don’t worry about keeping up on the blogs when you have such stress going on at home. It probably is the meds, at least that’s what happens in people who have had surgery. Odd reactions happen and no explanation is found but it goes away after a bit. I am glad you are keeping an eye on him but sad that you have to.

    At any rate, know we care and will understand if you go offline a bit. Say so before you do, though, so we don’t worry!

    September 25, 2016
  • Victoria

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    Oh my God, I am so hoping that Rubin will get well and back to his usual joyful self!
    Sending you lots of good wishes and love!

    September 25, 2016
  • Viridiana

    REPLY

    I’m so sorry about Rubin and all the ordeal you went through. I hope he is feeling better now and that he will be ok soon.

    September 26, 2016
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