Sunday, November 22, 2009
Monday last week I get home from work and Stella and Rocky rush downstairs and do their usual greeting dance which is them grabbing their respective balls of rope and wagging their tails and walking circles around me. I spend about a minute saying hello to them and then I turn away to hang up my jacket. When I turn back around, I see Stella already lying in her bed with her head on her paws. I say something like, "Lazy much?" but immediately realize something's not right. She doesn't want to move.
She really doesn't want to move but I make her get up anyway because I want to see what's wrong with her if anything. Part of me is still not sure she's not just being extra slothful at the moment.
She gets up slowly and her belly is all tucked in and the her tail is curled right up between her legs. She just stands there, doesn't move. I immediately think it's bloat because that's the fall back illness for most Great Dane owners when they see their dog experiencing some kind of unexplained stomache related pain. Bloat can kill a dog in 20 minutes so it's not like there's any pressure or anything. Plus it's extremely painful: stomache twisting, trapping the gas inside, gas expands. It's like the stomache becomes a balloon and it gets bigger and bigger.
I take her outside to see if it's not something like a cramp, something that can be walked off but she's still in discomfort after a few minutes. So there's nothing I can do but drive her to the Veterinary Emergency Clinic.
We get there and after another quick walk and still no change, we go inside the clinic. I'm not going to go into the details but basically I pick up Stella the next morning, because they wanted her there overnight, and I'm $1200 thinner. They've run bloodwork and multiple X-rays and they've found nothing. And now Stella's traumatized from having to spend the night at the clinic with an IV stuck in her and she's still in pain so they've also added some pain killers to the bill - although now I'm thinking the pain killers are for me.
I make an appointment for Stella at her regular vet for noon that same day and after more X-rays there and more examinations and $300+ later, they find nothing wrong with her, although it's looking like it's more of a hip or leg issue than a stomache problem.
I bring her home. I put her on Metacam and the next morning she's pretty well back to normal. Two more days on Metacam then I take her off it, holding my breathe, hoping whatever it was that ailed her doesn't come back once the drug wears off.
It doesn't or at least it hasn't yet.
$1500 spent and nada. Even if I had used the cash as firestarter, it would have been more useful. I'm sure Stella would have gotten more enjoyment out of it if I had spent it on steak.