Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Parvovirus - One Nasty Bug

Our dog Trouble is making his second appearance. Last Sunday, he vomited up some nasty ricy stuff, and a segmented worm. So I made a note to get him to the vet. Monday I called up the vet and made an appointment. But I noticed that Trouble wasn't playful.

A JRT that won't play is a sick dog. Trust me, I know from experiance that Jack Russels will play from dawn until midnight, with only occasional breaks. I got home at midnight, Trouble wouldn't eat, or drink. I offered him peanut butter, then the puppy milk we'd gotten for the rabbit. One lick then he turned his head.

Red Flags went up in my mind. I promptly force fed him 10ml of formula, and set my alarm for 7:30 am. We were at the "usual" vet promptly before 9 am. We were turned away. It was surgery day, they wouldn't take a look at my pup. To be fair, I was still under the impression he was wormy and sick.

They pointed across the street, to a rival vet's office, as the place for me to take my pup. This really isn't good business, but the "usual" vet's office has behaved oddly in the past.

After an exam, the Vet, Dr. Jenny informed me that Trouble was sick with Parvovirus. That it was life threatening (50% chance that he would make it.) It was going to be expensive. I had suspected the expensive part, and brought the checkbook. I hadn't expected the contageous part.

So Trouble went into Intensive Care at the New Vet's Office. I made a quick run back to the house to pick up the other two dogs for their booster shots. The check book was much lighter by the time I got home. Both JarJar and Mocha passed their exams, though they are scheduled for a longer follow up visit this Friday.

I was tickled to get updates from Dr. Jenny that night (Trouble was stable) and the next morning. The morning report was a surprise, Trouble was showing every sign of bouncing back. The next morning, I brought him home, low on energy, but gaining in a hurry.

We were lucky, Trouble is very lucky.

I will be switching Vets, yet again. This doesn't please me, to have my animals' records scatter over four vet's offices in the same county. But the usual Vet was terrified of JarJar's (admittedly creepy) habit of smiling when he greets strangers. Dr. Jenny was prudently wary of all the teeth. Still she gave my smiling dog the benefit of the doubt.

I learned my lesson about canine vaccines. I tend to sluff off the house dogs when I give my horses all their shots. The family wallet will suffer, but we will remain the proud owners of Trouble, Mocha and JarJar.

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