So things have been going really great. Sammi has been
eating devouring her food, which is incredible. She was doing well enough that we figured it was safe enough for me to go visit my mom in Wisconsin. So, for just over a week, I went up to Wisconsin and Michigan to see my Mom and some family. When I got home on Sunday, Oct 8th. Dogs were great, Dave was miserable (he caught my horrible cold/flu/strep/whatever it was..) but we were all in tact and okay.
The next morning, I take the pups into work, like any regular Monday, and within 15 minutes, our almost 16 year old Siberian Husky Tex starts acting weird. I reached down and felt him, trying to scoot him back into my office area, and his entire mid-section was completely solid and hard and filled with air. What in the hell is going on?! After panicking for 3 minutes, calling Dave, and trying to massage the gas out of him (like I did with Sammi just a month earlier) I finally got him in the car and raced to the same vet. Once they got him into the back for x-rays, I sat in the room and cried. Not just out of sadness, although I realize that sounds weird, but out of being so overwhelmed. I was still sick, Dave was sick, we had so much to do. The dogs were supposed to be perfect, it was Monday, I just got home. Sammi almost died, she will likely die from her cancer. Tex is dying. We’re running out of time.
Dave rushed in to the room just then, and while one person told us it wasn’t common for huskies to get bloat (yeah I know, thanks, but these are the symptoms and what the fuck else could it be? He’s expelling long, low, painful, air-filled moans when I squeeze him) the other vet (our favorite!) was in the back with Tex, basically confirming that he did indeed have bloat. But.. with torsion. My little man’s tummy had expanded with gas/air, and was twisting. Cutting off circulation to his organs and if we didn’t get him into surgery right away, he would die. Those were literally our options. Surgery or euthanize him.
Our first and really our only concern was, will he make it through surgery? He’s 15 years old! He’s old. Yes, he’s fairly active, for an ancient dog. But he’s so old. But.. He’s healthy. He eats homecooked meals. He’s perfect. They said the prognosis wasn’t necessarily bad. So.. we said yes, let’s do the surgery. My sweet baby. I could never see him happy and alive again. If he didn’t make it, that was it. I just spent the last week in Detroit and Madison, not having any idea these might be my last few moments with my firstborn.
Again, I sat in the waiting room with my laptop and wireless internet, doing whatever I could from there to get stuff done, and wait for his updates. Finally we got the news that he was stable, and okay. He had made it! They apparently had a tough time emptying his tummy out because there were almonds and potato skins in there. I am slinking down in my chair out of guilt. That’s what I feed him!! Almonds for treats, and the cooked potato skins off his potatoes for fiber! Isn’t that a good thing?!
So anyway, yeah. He was fine. He made it! Thank god. They said he was actually really stable throughout the entire surgery. My biggest fear was him under anesthesia, but.. he good. 🙂
Once we got through that, it was the journey of the days of recovery following. We opted to keep him at home overnight, instead of taking him for overnight care. I carried him to the car, carried him into the house, and plopped him on his bed, supported by towels and pillows all around. He slept and slept and slept. I carried him into the bedroom for the night, and checked to make sure he was breathing every hour. Finally, after the sun came up, I roused him a bit to see if he’d pee. He peed!!!! And back to bed. He could barely walk, he was very obviously in pain. They had opted to tack his stomach to the side walls while they were in there, to prevent the bloat from happening again. My baby!!!
One unexpected, but good thing that came out of all this, was, Texie had a mole thing that had been growing inside his right eyelid. While he was under, our amazing vet went in and removed it, which is why his eye looks kinds mucky in the above picture. Now that we’re two weeks post op for Tex, things are looking good for the babies. He is still hurting a little, I think, as he’ll whine sometimes when he wants help getting up, and Dave or I will go and help him stand. Of course, he insists on laying on the cool tile, which is harder to stand up from than the carpet or rugs or bazillion dog beds we have around the house. I’ve transitioned him to a full keto diet, as well.(Eliminated the potatoes) which I’ll explain in my next post. 🙂