In the car on the way home
Man. This is pretty awful. Dixie is very whiny. The doctor thinks it's from the pain killers — that she is disoriented from them (dysphoria). The girls at the vet carried her into the car. I love the heart they put on her.
I think this is going to be a long night.
Listening to Dixie cry.
We decided to take Dixie to the emergency animal hospital. After a half hour home, we thought she was crying and breathing too hard/fast. Dixie yelped SO loud when we tried to pick her up to put her in the car. It was so awful! We figured out a better way to carry her, and covered her eyes. She didn't make a sound.
This is all frustrating because the plan all along was to have her come home the same day of the surgery. Our vet didn't expect anything else. (They preferred her to be home where she would be supervised. They don't have anyone tending to the animals over night. We were unaware of that until today.) Her pain was pretty bad. They had her on a drip to maintain it. They sent her home with us around 5:45pm. They said they wanted her back at 7:45am the next morning to continue IV pain killers.
I feel all this regret. What have we done? Should we have found a different vet or surgeon to do the amputation? I feel responsible for her pain… (I know it's not my fault. Adam keeps reminding me. It's just more intense than I expected.)
At the emergency vet, they said we made the right decision to bring her in. That made us feel much better. We thought maybe we were just overreacting. They decided that she needs to continue pain management through shots or IV. I felt much, much better having her there, being monitored. However, bringing her home, seeing how upset she was, then bringing her to a new hospital — this was SO upsetting to us. They seemed confident that she would be okay with the appropriate amount of pain killers. Then they had us sign a do or do not resuscitate order. THAT blew us away. They said they don't anticipate anything to go wrong, but you never know. So we signed to resuscitate.
We got to say bye to her before we left. She looked pretty scared—had total crazy eyes—and was still whining. Tonight is gonna be a long one. I don't know how much sleep we are going to get worrying about her. All I want is to NOT get a phone call from the hospital. We will probably call at least once to check up on her.
We are planning on showing up at their door at 7am tomorrow, before the night vet goes home. They are going to give our vet a call and see what they think about the situation. I hope our vet don't insist on seeing her. I feel better keeping her at one place until it's okay she can come home to us. Plus, I feel safe having her at the hospital. I think they just got a new client?! We will see…
PS: On a side note, I don't know how we would have been able to give her pain meds ourselves tonight, seeing as they are pills. She wouldn't even lick an ice cube—how were we going to get her to swallow a pill? Grrrr.
Well Adam is passed out on the couch. We watched a DVD of Friends episodes—made me giggle and feel a little better. At 10:30pm, I made Adam call the hospital to check on the D. They said they started an IV and her whimpering is quieter. She's also clearly out-of-it, which they said is a good thing. Hopefully she can get some sleep tonight.
I'm reluctant to sleep. I feel like as long as I'm awake, everything is going to be okay. I always considered myself a strong person, but man, I'm a wreck when it comes to the ones I love. I asked Adam, What am I going to do when we have kids and something goes wrong? I'll be a complete disaster! Seriously.
I'm going to post this tomorrow. Need to get through the night, but felt like writing first. I've also been browsing Tripawds.com. Everyone is so wonderful on that site. I posted about our trip the the ER and Mary from the Bay Area wrote me back:
Oh, Emily, that's so scary. But, as you said, they seemed confident that she would be okay with the appropriate amount of pain killers. Once they have that adjusted, she'll get some rest. The other thing is probably standard procedure.
There are lots of stories here about how our dogs get weirded out with their medications right after surgery. I'm hoping, with you, that that's all it is.
Give yourself a couple drops of Rescue Remedy and try to rest. Dixie will need you to be strong tomorrow.
Hugs and prayers and good thoughts
I wanted to ask if Rescue Remedy is a shot of tequila. jk jk. Countless people on that site have gone through what we are, and what we are about to. It's incredibly comforting to hear their stories and advice.
I broke down and called the hospital again. The vet tech said they moved her to a kennel where they could turn off the lights, and that seemed to help her relax. And, she's sleeping—has been for about 45 mins! Phew, I'm so glad. Maybe now I can sleep too… if only our A/C would kick on. It's just blowing tepid air. It's not even hot out right now! C'mon!