15 October 2011

If its Tuesday, this must be the surgeon

Since returning from our adventures on the high main, Zero and I have been locked in a battle for who has the most doctor visits. I may be winning in the number of unique doctors category, but Muttley has the gold for overall quantity.

He was absolutely fine when we picked him up last Wednesday. By fine, I mean eating, bouncing up and down, and being a small fury pile of squirmy. Come Thursday morning, he apparently changed his mind. MilkBones were no longer good enough for him. I shrugged it off as I had more important things to worry about, namely my own appointment with Herceptin for which I was already running late.

Come dinner time, Zero still showed no interest in getting out of bed, much less walking all the way into the kitchen for food. He's been picky about morning MilkBones before, but never apathetic about dinner. I offered him the god of treats, a chicken strip. He barely sniffed it before turning his head away. Well, there was only one thing to do in this situation. "MATT! The dog's broken!"

Trip number one to the vet commenced soon after. Zero didn't have a fever, but he did have a history of expensive gastrointestinal problems. The vet prescribed anti-nausea and appetite stimulating pills and told us to email her in the morning.

The anti-nausea pill shoved down his throat by the vet's assistant had him acting normal before we even made it home. Not even the appetite stimulant could convince him to eat, however. After refusing breakfast, it was back to the vet for him.

Zero was even less appreciative of that car ride, so it wasn't much of a surprise when he turned out to have a fever. The vet still couldn't give an official diagnosis. She did speculate that it might have been a virus from three weeks of daycare, or possibly Irritable Bowel Disease (IBD). A blood test showed nothing, and an ultrasound showed inflamed intestines. She gave him fluids and sent him home, with the same email me in the morning instructions.

The dog clearly didn't want to go back to Dr. Vet, so he did try to eat a bit. Just not enough for him to go back AGAIN for the third day in a row. Luckily, his temperature was back down. More fluids, more keeping an eye on him.

Finally, Zero got the point and started eating again. Granted, he would only eat chicken strips, and not that much, but it was food. I strongly suspected that he figured out that ignoring the main dish would get him extra dessert, but his lack of jumping up and down squashed that theory. Upon hearing of this on Monday morning, Dr. Vet suggested we get a thermometer and take his temperature at home. Since I was at work and not taking any part of this, I agreed whole-heartedly.

Apparently Zero recognized the thermometer from his adventures at the vet and immediately hid. Sadly, hiding under the coffee table with his backend hanging out isn't very effective. Especially when someone is trying to measure his temperature... rectally.

Matt discovered that dogs can clinch their butts shut, but he managed to get the thermometer in there. His temperature? 96.7. In other words, failure. Dogs normally run around 101-102. Take two! This time Matt took no prisoners and really shoved it in. Luckily for both of them, the thermometer read 100.5.

Come Wednesday, Zero was still not eating, except for chicken strips. Fine then. We tried to avoid it. We really did. But now there was nothing to do but shove an endoscope down his throat to do a biopsy. Of course, we could have just opted to go straight to treatment, but if it was a virus, the steroids would have done a number on his immune system and muttpie would have been in trouble. So on with the freaking expensive rotorooter down the throat!

No one was surprised when Dr. Vet reported a visual abnormality. The official results would take two days, but she was confident enough in the diagnosis that it was time for Zero to start steroids. The first dose was injected immediately, and it worked nearly immediately. When we picked him up forty minutes later, he was already acting normal. Then, lo and behold, he ate dinner!

He also ate breakfast, more dinner, and more breakfast before the shocking results came back. Zero officially has IBD! He'll be on steroids for the near future, and quite possibly for the rest of his life. Personally, I think he did it on purpose, just so he could get a delicious Pill Pocket twice daily. The nerve!

1 comment:

whomajigi said...

I lol'ed at "MATT! The dog's broken!" When we finally get our dog, I will probably be saying that. Often.

Glad he's doing better.

Teehee. My captcha word is berpzi.