Desperate Race Against Midnight

So it seems that I’ve slipped up today. I planned to continue trying to actually write somewhat less than random words today as the  beginning of this week had proven quite fruitful in terms of fodder for this blog. Imagine! I managed to get three days worth of blogging from a late night vet trip and the aftermath the next day. But tonight after dinner and some wine, we retired to the couch to finish up season two of Downton Abbey and as we only had three episodes remaining, we pressed on despite the hour growing late and my blog deadline drawing near.

I’m afraid that I’m rather disappointed with Downton Abbey season two. We thought season one was quite good and that the show was off to such a nice start. However, it’s hard to imagine that the same person wrote both seasons! The second season’s plot lines were often highly unoriginal, sometimes right from the pages of a bad soap opera, and too often drawn out in ways that sucked the drama from them like a hungry vampire sucking the last drops of blood from an anemic victim. There were times when I felt embarrassed for the actors involved in a few of the scenes. Despite it all, the shows still watchable. I just hope that the writer got some fresh ideas and better execution of them for season three otherwise this show is or shouldn’t be long for this world.

It’s sad to see formerly good shows turn into shadows of themselves. For this show, it took but a season (and seems like a sharp change to us as we only just first watched season one over the last two weeks). For others like our once cherished Dexter, the writers managed a good five seasons of high-caliber writing before season six descended into lots of bad writing with season seven resurrecting some good writing while killing off some bad plot points (but doing so in a jarring way that showed that either the writers changed their minds and the writers were changed themselves) and still running up against plotting landmines. I’m glad that poor Dexter will be put out of his quality misery next season although we’ll still be watching it because we want to see how the writers tie things up and the quality was enough to keep us watching the characters and actors that we had come to love watching.

Breaking Bad is one show that I’ve watched where there was no discernible decline over the course of its run. I’m thankful that the show will be coming to what will no doubt be a satisfying end this year because although I will miss such an amazing show, how can it be possible to go on and maintain such stellar quality?

So looking at the time, I appear to have slipped from Friday night to Saturday morning. Ah, but it’s close – so very close. And after all, it’s still January 12th somewhere in the world. So I’ll consider myself as having fulfilled my blog entry for Friday and remain in keeping with my 2013 resolution. Phew!

Fun With Dog Vomit – Part III

I was given the choice of having Perrin undergo surgery to remove the remaining Kong toy pieces from his stomach and intestines or waiting to see if things became more clear about whether or not pieces remained and/or were passing successfully through the gi tract. The trade off was that waiting would cost more money as I would have to leave Perrin there hooked up to an iv and have more X-rays performed – while these hospitalization costs would get rolled into the cost of surgery. In other words, if it turned out that the wait and see approach failed, the overall costs would probably be higher than if I just decided to go ahead with surgery.

I decided though that I wanted to take that chance because it would be overall less risky for Perrin himself if we could avoid surgery.

I left him in the hands of my excellent vet and headed in to the office where I found myself feeling rather frazzled and unfocused as I waited impatiently for four hours to pass by and to hear word about what the next step would need to be. I grew more and more anxious that Perrin would have to undergo surgery and dreaded the two or three day period afterwards where the healing incisions into the intestines might open with failing stitches. I also did not look forward to the prospect of Perrin having to where the cone of shame for ten days.

Finally, after what seemed like all day, I received a call from the vet and she informed me that our fears seemed to have not come to pass. The gas pattern in the stomach that had suggested a foreign body was no longer there and the pattern in the intestines had changed locations and been reduced in size, suggesting that if there was a foreign body behind the gas pattern that it was moving through Perrin’s bowels successfully and that surgery would not be required.

We were able to pick up Perrin that evening and take him home for monitoring. He was on orders to receive bland food instead of his usual dog food, and we had to give him a tablet dissolved in water to line his gi tract and protect it  and aid in the passage of the possible foreign body. Thankfully, he did not throw up again that evening, and we were able to sleep through the entire night without any disturbance.

The next morning we brought Perrin back to the vet for another X-ray to make sure that things still seemed to be progressing. Thankfully, they were. Perrin’s behavior that morning was much better. He cheerfully greeted the vet when I brought him into the room and he seemed full of his normal energy.

It was a close call!

We have since this incident removed all Kong toys from the house and will think twice about picking up another “indestructible” toy. In fairness, the particular Kong toy may not have been for “powerful chewers” like Perrin. There was a classic Kong toy in our house that was made for “powerful chewers” and probably is fine, but it was old and we didn’t want to risk the possibility that it may have begun to wear down.

We really would like to avoid another trip to the vet for foreign body ingestion!

Fun With Dog Vomit – Part II

We took Perrin home Monday evening from the emergency vet with instructions to watch him for signs of abdominal pain or vomiting over night and then possibly follow up with our normal vet in the morning. He was sluggish and snoozy on the ride back home as the drug that they injected him with to induce vomiting apparently packs quite a wallop.

Our plan was for me to get up with Perrin at 7am and keep an eye on him for any signs of trouble while working from home until a disturbance or until I needed to go into the office for an 11am meeting. Melinda had to our for an errand that morning, so it was up to me to make sure Perrin was fine.

Things didn’t go as planned.

I woke up around 6am in absolutely darkness to the sound of Perrin gagging and the sinking feeling that I was about to have to clean up dog vomit. Before I could position him to anywhere more strategic (such a wooden portion of the floor), Perrin proceeded to vomit up more purple Kong toy pieces. Not pausing to access the damage, I tried to escort him downstairs quickly only to have him vomit again at the foot of the stairs. This time it was only a small bit, but I noticed in the light of the hall way that there was a little bit of bloody phlegm in the mess. I took concerned note of this and then shuffled him quickly downstairs where he once again threw up even more pieces of purple Kong toy. Every time, I kept thing how this surely had to be everything.

But no… the Kong toy was the gift that kept on giving.

After the third time, Perrin’s stomach seemed to settle. After cleaning up the mess, I cracked open my laptop, made myself breakfast and coffee and settled in for what was to be a long and tiring morning. I contacted the emergency vet by phone to make sure that the trace amounts of blood were nothing to be concerned over. She felt that it wasn’t serious in the amounts that I described. I decided I would continue to monitor the situation and call my vet when they opened to see if she felt that Perrin needed to be examined further.

Over the course of waiting for the vet to open, he vomited five more times each time bringing up yet more rubber pieces and the last time was somewhat unnerving as it was mostly bloody phlegm. With this turn of events, I called my vet and as I expected, she wanted us to bring Perrin in for X-rays.

With barely time for a quick shower and change of clothes, I rushed off to take Perrin to the vet where they proceeded to take X-rays. While I was worried about him, I thought at this point that he was probably over the worst of it and that I would soon be headed back home with maybe some medicine to settle his gi tract. While Perrin was being X-rayed, I was using my cell phone as a hotspot so that I could check my work email on my laptop and make sure that my meeting got delayed so that I didn’t have to worry about missing it while at the vet’s office.

I was absentmindedly typing away when the vet returned and her demeanor caught me off guard. It seemed that things weren’t going to be so simple after all. The X-rays showed some troubling things, and I would need to make a decision.

To be continued…