Wednesday, September 20, 2006

New Breed: Billy Lab

Poor Jack.
Loyal readers will recall that our sweet doggie Jack has a history of interesting digestive episodes. He has the eating habits of a billy goat with a tapeworm, so this latest development shouldn’t surprise anyone.
About a week and a half ago, I took Jack to the vet for his annual visit and to address some weight loss issues. They did a bunch of tests and found nothing, but decided to deworm him just in case. 10 days later he was back at the vet, down another 3 ½ pounds and with what I shall politely call some potty problems.
Again, bloodwork and other tests showed nothing remarkable, except for some slightly altered levels in a few proteins. Phrases like “exploratory surgery” and “ultrasound with biopsy” and “masses in the abdomen” began to be thrown around. But our vet (a funny, kind, practical woman we adore) suggested that we first take an abdominal x-ray to see if it showed anything obvious. Jack apparently supported this idea – he cooperated long enough to be x-rayed without sedation.
The vet came back in with the x-ray and said “Leave it to your dog…”
To which I replied “Oh God… .what did he eat?”
Vet Lady: “I don’t know… but there’s a lot of it.”
Me: “Well… there was that Texas ball cap. And the three toys he chewed up last week. Oh, and he likes paper napkins a lot. He gobbles up rocks on walks. Did I mention the toy plane? He only got half of that….” (you get the picture)
Vet Lady: "Wow..."
Me (looking at x-ray): “Is that half a tennis ball?”
Vet Lady: “Hmmm… could be.”
Me: “What is THAT? Some kind of twine? String?”
Vet Lady: “I won’t really know until I get in there. But see those bright white flecks? That’s probably metal.”
Me (to the dog): “Nice work, Jack!”
Jack: *slurp* *lick* * BELCH*

So the result is that our boy is going under the knife as I type. Neither I nor the vet nor anyone in the vet’s office can tell what he’s got in there, but whatever it is, it’s blocking his colon and parts of his small intestine. The good news is the vet assured us this did NOT look like a tumor or other naturally-occurring mass. So provided we can keep him from eating half a landfill again, he shouldn’t have any more troubles after the surgery.


Will they let me use my flexible spending account to put back money for next time?

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