Tuesday, October 27, 2009

To the vet, and beyond!!

It's been a pretty good day.

We took Anakin to the vet today.  I was feeling really trepidatious about the whole thing, fearing something might be horribly wrong with him.  He had a few spells where he stopped breathing and fell over, which was actually why we took him to the vet at all.  The first time he did it, a month or so back, I thought he was choking on the apple core we had given him -- apparently, it doesn't come back up as smoothly as it goes down.  The second time it happened he wasn't choking, that we could tell, so I got to thinking something horrible was wrong with him.  He's current on his shots and is generally in really good spirits.  He's got a ton of energy, is affectionate, and playful.  It's just those two things.  Then, Sunday, I was looking inside his ears when I noticed a huge ball of nasty stuff, so I thought he might have an ear infection.  Falling over, plus ear infection, equals vet visit.

I hate taking him to the vet for things like this.  Yearly visit, that's fine, he gets his shots, they draw his blood for the heartworm test, and we're off.  Everyone's happy and we go about our way.  Stuff like this, where he could be really sick, freaks me out.  My imagination runs away with me in a major way, I start fearing the worst, and by the time we get to the vet I'm just certain it's something horrible!  I love him and want him to be okay, and I worry.

Luckily, we have a really stellar vet!  When we first moved here, we were seeing a different vet.  We didn't have Ani yet, just Galileo and Chummer.  The old vet was the one that did surgery on both of the cats for blocked urinary tracts after we moved to Stephenville.  That was fine, and she was nice enough, but that's also where Chummer died, so we couldn't really go back there.  We both felt so bad about losing our baby, we couldn't bring ourselves to keep going to the same woman.  Also, she was a bit eccentric and I started to wonder if we could trust her opinion.  So, I set out to find us a new vet.  Now, we go to Arc Veterinary Hospital and they're fantastic.  We've seen Dr. Karen Hobbs almost every time we go there, including today, and she's so friendly and upbeat without being obnoxious.

The doctor checked him out and listened to his heart and said he seemed fine.  He didn't have an irregular heartbeat or any weird heart noises, and that heart problems are usually what causes spells of fainting.  We asked if it might be seizures, which she agreed it could, but that without thrashing, it was either unlikely or early stage epilepsy.  We got some Interceptor (heartworm prevention), she cleaned out his ears which was an ordeal but he doesn't have an infection, and gave us some pamphlets on seizures in dogs.  We also got some information about having him fixed, which I want to do but Matt's resistant to.  The vet says it won't change his personality, it'll just make him less randy and could prevent serious medical conditions, like testicular cancer, prostate problems, and urinary tract infection.  Matt just told me that if I want to get him fixed, I can, but on the condition that I don't talk about it with him and that he doesn't have to go when I drop him off for the surgery.  What a wimp!  My biggest, and really only, concern is that my baby would be having surgery, however easy it is on male dogs versus female dogs, and I'm afraid something will go wrong and he'll die.  I couldn't take that, so it's something I need to consider.  If you have any advice about this, I'd love to have it.

One final bit of awesome news is that our groomer, Chris, moved back to town!  I had no idea he was back, but when I was lamenting our grooming issues with "horror groomer" to my vet today, I was telling her that Chris use to groom Ani and that not only did he do a spectacular job, but that Ani LOVED him!  She told me that he had moved back to town and that they had his number!!  I was so excited!!  The second we walked in the door I picked up the phone and sure enough, not only was he back, but he's been back for almost a year!  I wish I had known, maybe then Ani and I wouldn't have had to go through all the grooming problems we had trying to groom him at home.  He needs a professional, I'm not it.

Anyway, the vet said that if he continues to pass out that we should document when it is and what was going on.  She also said that we should take a vid of him with a cell phone, which I don't have, but I do have a Flip Mino, so it shouldn't be a problem.  I guess we'll just have to see if I can remember, in the moment, to take the damn video.  When he's not doing well, I sorta freak out... okay, maybe not sorta.  I freak out, big time!  If it continues, she said she could refer us to a specialist who could hook him up to an EKG machine and observe him.  I hope it doesn't come to that, we can't afford it.  Maybe it's time to finally look into getting pet insurance?  I just don't know, but I'm considering it.  So, needless to say, we're still not wanting to leave him alone.  I was really hoping to go to the Corn Maze in West, TX on Saturday, since Halloween is the last day it'll be open this season, but I don't want to leave him alone, so we probably won't go as they don't allow even small animals in the maze.  Ah well, we can't really afford the road trip anyway, having just spent $112 to take Ani to the vet and another $30 for his grooming, which is tomorrow (yay!!).

All in all, I'm glad my baby is okay. Again, if you have any suggestions about any of this, let me know, I'm always happy to have another opinion when trying to make decisions, like whether to get him fixed.  For now, I think I've rambled on enough!