One of our dogs is named Morgan. Over the years she’s been called many things…Morgan LaMouth, Clarabell the Clown and a couple of names I’d be ashamed to put in print. A Plott Hound, brindle in coat, a true picture of a junk yard dog. A foundling like most of our dogs from 10 years ago or so. A real pugilist, didn’t take guff from anyone. Over the years she’s lost her sight, some teeth and a little of her mind. No matter, she’s always maintained a huge focus on food and routine. Over the last couple of days she hasn’t been food driven and has taken to being very restless and reluctant to lay down. Yesterday morning, although obviously hungry…she wouldn’t eat. We made an appointment for the vet for 4pm yesterday and took her in.
While at the vet, she refused to lay down and just tried to walk around the exam room. Her back legs weren’t very cooperative. Our vet came in and gave a very thorough physical exam and gave us her concerns. First and most alarming, her temperature was about 9 degrees below average. She had a lot of pain around her neck and throat. She was hugely tender to the touch in the abdomen. Without tests (and money) of course, she couldn’t completely diagnose.
This blog certainly has been truthful about how hard it is to make money right now. In the past there would have been no hesitation about spending the money to do whatever it takes to keep our dogs healthy. The vet was recommending bloodwork and exray of abdomen. Since we’ve paid our credit cards down, we agreed. She took Morgan out of the room and was gone for a while and when she came back she told us she knew what the problem was and the news was not good.
Somehow there was a weakness in the lining of Morgan’s stomach and something caused a tear allowing her intestines and liver to move into her stomach and press on her lungs. Not only was she having tremendous trouble breathing (the reason she couldn’t lay down or walk well) but she was in a lot of agony. The options stunk. The surgery would be more than $2000 and Morgan due to age and other risk factors was not a good candidate. The other option was euthanasia. In years past we might have taken the risk…but, maybe not. Who can know. All we know is that we never expected when we arrived for the vet appointment at 4 pm, that we’d be saying goodbye forever to our dog by 6pm.
Maybe it’s because we have had so many dogs for a very long time, but it seems as though winter is always the time we lose these friends.