Wednesday, July 20, 2005

a quiet dog

In an effort to jump start the cardio fitness I discovered can dwindle to virtually nothing if I lie around reading and eating for two weeks, I took Zappa for a run yesterday morning. Things were going well: the trail was shady, cool and quiet, I was feeling much better than on my Sunday run, and Zappa was enjoying his freedom as usual, dashing through the bush to chase hare and squirrels. But at the turnaround point I called him to me and he emerged from the woods with blood all over his feet. For the second time on that trail (though the first was probably five years ago) he has come across something sharp enough to cause major damage. Last time it was a paw pad sliced in two; this time he actually severed an artery at the base of a foreleg. I was, of course, 4 km from home on a remote trail with no cell phone. Fortunately I came across a couple with a dog who just happened to be paramedics not to mention really kind people. The wife rushed off to get the car they'd parked at the head of the trail and I walked Zappa up a switchback to meet her on the road. Fortunately it was "the dog's car", a very elderly Volvo used specifically to take the dog places. Good thing as after Zappa had bled all over the towel on the seat he proceeded to soak the upholstery. She drove me home and rigged up a bandage to help stanch the blood flow using a receiving blanket I'd saved for just such an emergency (or so I told myself), I loaded him in my truck and off we went to the vet. I wish I'd had the presence of mind to get the woman's contact info so I could thank her properly!

Due to overwhelming numbers of surgery that day, he received emergency triage but didn't get his op until about 5 pm. He had a large cyst on his neck that poverty was keeping me from dealing with, but as he was going under general anaesthetic I asked them to cut that out, too. It turned out to be a whopper. He now has two shunts in his neck for drainage, much to Adam's disgust, as well as the pretty pink bandage on his leg. And lots of stitches. Suddenly he's an uncharacteristically quiet dog. And I have a $750 hole in my bank account. I guess it's wieners and beans for the inmates until the creditors give up and go away...


Blogger andy said...

Ouch! I'm glad to hear the story had a reasonably happy ending. Hope Zappa gets over his adventure okay; sounds as though you stayed remarkably cool throughout.

20/7/05 2:00 PM  
Blogger andrea said...

Thanks, Andy. I didn't sleep much last night, though! Probably due as much to the trauma to my bank account as to the trauma to my furry friend.

20/7/05 3:11 PM  
Anonymous chitty said...

I hope Zappa gets through this. I love animals, especially dogs, and any form of cruelty to animals gets me all worked up. Keep us posted on his progress, will you?

20/7/05 11:21 PM  
Blogger andrea said...

I will, thanks. He's doing fine now, though being a hyper sheepdog he hates the restricted movement.

21/7/05 7:36 AM  

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