A Side Splitter
I wouldn’t have made a good nurse. Or doctor, or phlebotomist. I wouldn’t have even made a good vet tech.
I get queasy at the sight of blood. I hyperventilate and sometimes, depending on the situation, I get physically ill.
When I was a teenager, I somehow managed to cut a small piece of the tip of my finger off with scissors.
“Go run it under cold water,” my mom said, helping me hold a towel to the wound.
The feel of the cold water as it hit my hand and the red washing down the sink was the last thing I remember before waking up on the kitchen floor.
We had yet another medical emergency at our house yesterday, the worst of them all to date.
After about a half hour, her licking was driving me crazy.
“What in the world are you licking?” I asked her.
Not getting a reply, I bent down to feel the underside of her belly where she was licking and drew back a bloody hand. I also felt raw meat.
She wasn’t bleeding profusely, but enough for me to know there was something very wrong.
“Stand up,” I told her. When she did, that queasy, fade to black feeling hit me. That same feeling I had when I clipped a tip of my finger off.
Her skin was hanging off of her side, exposing raw flesh underneath. I ran to the bathroom to wash my hand and slap some ice cold well water from the tap on my face.
When I was sure I was not going to pass out or get sick I came back out, careful not to look at the gaping wound.
I picked up the phone and called Dale and told him of the emergency.
“This is getting ridiculous,” he said. “Are you sure you’re not over-reacting?”
Dale is not cold-hearted, but really, these vet bills are getting ridiculous.
To recap, in the past 5 months, our dogs have sustained serious foot and mouth injuries (Abbi, 2 surgeries on the foot and 1 set of stitches to the mouth for a different injury), a dog or wild animal attack (Dexter, who came home with so many holes they had to nearly completely shave him), a serious ear infection (Sade this past Friday) and of course, Molly’s chronic heart problem, as well as medication for Dakota’s dry eyes and routine bloodwork for a thyroid condition.
I could go back a year when Sade lost a couple of teeth and Chloe was snake bit, but I think you get the idea.
The good news is that I made it to the vet without getting sick or passing out and so did Chloe, who sometimes experiences car sickness, even when she’s feeling her best (Dale didn’t have that luck bringing her home).
But not before stopping to show Dale I really wasn’t hysterical and this definitely was another needed trip to the animal doctor.
“Good God,” he said, wincing and taking a step back from the Baby Blazer after seeing her side.
Better news is that Chloe should be fine. She had surgery to repair her side and they removed the drain so she could come home last night.
We have no idea what might have happened, but we suspect barbed wire.
We lived here for 3 years, first with two big dogs, Emma and Sade, without one single injury, but it seems since Emma left us in August 2010, it’s been one thing right after another.
We’ve not been allowing Chloe and Abbi out together to run at night and now that will extend to the daytime. They like to roam and survey the woods together, but having already removed Dexter from that danger by leashing him when he is out, we’ll also be limiting the other two. They don’t seem inclined to roam farther than the driveway when they’re not together.
Through all of this, I still take stock of the beauty that surrounds us and count our lucky stars in our bright, starlit sky that it wasn’t worse.
How has your week started?