“A person who has never owned a dog has missed a wonderful part of life.” -Bob Barker I will start off by saying I am totally not running to be “kindest person of the year” or anything near that title. Why am I being tested with life matters is the question that has been on my mind. It for sure is not that I need material to write these articles. Even if nothing more happens in my life in the next 10 years, I have enough reference material and in the head ideas to carry on!
This week's story begins. It was a warm, sunny second Wednesday of the month and that meant it was rug hooking day and maybe equally important, lunch time with the rug hooking ladies. We had a great lunch and I usually don't stay for afternoon hooking. Sitka goes to play time at 1 pm but it was about 1:10 pm; I decided to call Jeff at Rio Gran Boarding and Training to see if he could still come. The answer was yes. Sitka seemed very reluctant to get in the pickup and then he just laid down and did not beg for pets. We get to Rio and he goes in and collapses at the front door. Panic! Jeff immediately got him water which he does drink. We talked and decided that it most likely was heat exposure if he did not drink enough water because the honey bees were being a pest. Jeff decided to send him over to the boarding building which is air conditioned and put out more water for him. Jeff said that if it was either because of heat or water, he would be fine by 3:30 pm.
I get back and Jeff is on the phone telling Town and Country Vets that I will be bringing him in as he was worse than when I brought him in. We manage to get him in the pickup but he is just like a bag of sand. I race to Town and Country and they bring out a cart and somehow we got him moved inside.
After what seemed like forever, Dr. Jon and Dr. Julie come out and say that for sure it was not either the heat or lack of water. It's severe anemia! No way to answer what the cause was at this time. It would be necessary to try and get him to an emergency animal hospital but it has been next to impossible to get any animal admitted any place around the Twin City area because of the high demand for their services. Dr. Julie did the near impossible and got him in Blue Pearl Vets in Arden Hills. In the mean time Daughter Nissa, who I texted while waiting, has called Neighbor Tony to inform him of the problem. Neighbors Tony and Rose come and we decide that Tony will drive the rush hour traffic and I will hold Sitka. The traffic could have been worse at 6 pm but Tony did an excellent job of driving while I held what appeared to a lifeless dog in my lap. Of course the whole world is under construction! Sitka got admitted and we WAITED.
They said they did not have any immediate answers on the anemia but his red cell count was in a total danger zone. They would keep him and try a blood transfusion, do tests and hope he makes it through the night. Decisions! Did I want them to do the treatment? I saw the price estimate and even the very low end was a top vacation for several weeks. Just like for humans, I had to sign a DNR form. Decisions in almost an instant! I decided to go with treatment but said let him go if things go bad.
Outside of Sitka getting possible rat poison, which was the best of the 3 things that would be causing his bleed, all the rest were miraclesFor me to decide to take him late to play time, Jeff to jump into action with water and cool down, Jeff to call the vets and say I am bringing him, Dr. Jon and Dr. Julie and staff to stay after their 4:00 pm closing, Dr. Julie to get an almost impossible appointment, Tony to drive the rush hour construction trip. Sitka no doubt would have been gone if I didn't check on him until supper time. He had a transfusion and plasma and was able to come home on Friday. Long road to see if it actually was the rat poison and not one of the two next possibilities. Thank You Lord.
By Bea Westerberg