2004-03-15 - 8:37 p.m.
This is an update on Dagget's situation. I called the vet this morning at about 8:20 to check on the Dagmeister. I was expecting to hear that he was doing much better, scarfing his food, and ready to come home and get stronger so we could treat the worms.
That's not what I got. The vet said Dagget was not eating anything and was not doing well at all and that she wanted me to come by with some food from home to see if I could get him to eat anything. If he refused to eat for me, she said we should think about putting him to sleep, because refusing all food is a very bad sign that he is not going to respond.
I left work immediately, went to the house to get some cheese and a scrambled egg, 2 foods Dagget loves. I called Binky to give her the option of going or not going. She wanted to be there. When we saw Dagget, he looked pretty bad and he was scared and upset. We held him for a long time, spent at least 2 hours, maybe 3 right there with him, holding him and crying and petting him. He gobbled up the cheese, ate a bite of the yucky dog food they had given him, and drank some water. He wasn't in the mood for an egg. He was greatly relieved to see us and he licked and licked us as much as possible. He sucked up the attention like a sponge.
The vet told us that Dagget is doing somewhat better, but not enough to live without some kind of help to unblock his vena cava and restore blood flow to his liver. She said we have 3 choices at this point: put him to sleep, take him home and let him die of liver failure, or give him a shot that would kill about half the worms and hopefully unblock the vena cava. She said he might die, but he has an almost 50% chance of surviving this and if he gets through this treatment, we can strengthen him and then treat the rest of the worms. After that point, he would be free of heart worms and out of the woods.
We decided to go for it. He got the shot that will either kill him or cure him. I am praying to God that he survives. I really don't want my pup to die. (obviously) If he does, I am going to be devastated. Pure and simple. I am hoping that because he is a young dog who has always been fantastically healthy, until Friday, that he has reserves of strength and will make it through.
So pray for Dagget. Pray hard for Dagget. Tomorrow begins the most dangerous week of his life. If he lives through the week, he has a fair chance to live. He got the shot at about noon today, so the worms will be dying within 24 hours. At that point, they *should* drop back into the heart chamber where they were before they moved and made him sick. The blood flow will carry the dead worms back to that chamber where they will dissolve and be asorbed in the lungs. This is what we HOPE happens. During this process, if the worms break down too quickly and move too many worm particles into his lungs at once, he could suffer respiratory failure. A healthy dog has a 95% chance of absorbing the worms particles without dying. Dagget's chances are less because he is weakened and sick right now. Just pray!!! He has to make it.
I will update on this every day until Dagget is out of the woods or has died. If Dag lives through this, I'm making a Dagget page for updates where I will thrill/bore you with what Dag had to eat, how he liked it, whether he had a good nap or played with his chew toy. How many hairs he lost today, whether or not his nose is wet and cold, etc.
Have I mentioned that I love my dog?
spring - fall
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