|Henry & Charlie|
The snow melted quickly during a rain storm within a couple of days and we dealt with the New England mud and way-too-messy yard. We kept steering Henry to higher ground and away from the low spots. But his eyesight seems even worse and sometimes the ramp is not his friend when he fails to pay attention. Sometimes, he veers off-course instead of maintaining the middle of the ramp - this has lead to a couple of tumbles off the sides when we couldn't grab him fast enough; luckily, it's only two steps high. Or, he'll approach from the side and try to climb aboard - but with weak back legs, that's maneuver is an exercise in futility. I must say that his Metacam Oral Suspension and the Nutramax Dasuquin with MSM has performed a minor miracle, though. When he would try to stand on the wood floors without going to one of this skid-resistant throw rugs, his legs would spread-eagle out just like Bambi on ice. Since the Nutramax Dasuquin, however, he is more steady while walking, can stand upright much longer and doesn't seem so "crippled" when he does walk. We thank our vet, Dr. Betsey Borg, for the great care and concern for his quality of life!!
But, Henry has more recently had a couple other problems. Seems he managed to tear a toenail almost completely out of its "socket". I noticed when he came in the house and immediately tested gently to see if he was in pain. No pain and I was able to rearrange it to a non-90º angle and wrap a stretchy bandage around it to hold it in place. We called and our vet said she'd squeeze him in for the morning to check things out. Sometime during his night-time TCB, Henry lost his bandage and the nail. I was afraid of dirt, etc. so cleaned it with saline spray and wrapped it again until the office visit. Dr. Borg was pleased that the injury would not require any snipping or yanking out of the nail (Yikes!) but was concerned about infection so Henry was put on antibiotics and the great Vetericyn VF spray we have for boo-boos. After five days on the antibiotics, however, Henry had gastrointestinal problems so we watched what he ate and the "aftermath". It wasn't projectile as I've endured with other furr kidds but he seemed to be excessively thirsty and within two days, he was suddenly incontinent. What the heck?? Henry always went outside to TCB even in rain or storms (that's NOT the doxie in him; it's the other half, for sure!). Luckily, I had a mattress pad for his bed and quickly ordered two more from eBay. We phoned the Vet and one week from the last visit, we were there again - this time a urine sample and blood test were included. The phone call came the next day with the results - Henry has diabetes. Poor guy - he just doesn't deserve to be sick after all he's been through and for the calm, gentle sweet soul he always is to everyone. So, off we went that evening for injection lessons from Dr. Borg. Since I also have diabetes, I knew about the glucose testing, insulin vials and syringes (thankfully, I am now on the pen-type injection but there is none for canines). Surprisingly, my type of glucometer for testing glucose levels is identical to the canine-type so I figured I'd be able to use that somehow instead of having to take blood from his leg vein. My Carpal Tunnel problems make grabbing/grasping/holding small items, etc. very difficult and I didn't want to hurt Henry if it could be avoided. So I took one of my Multiclix lancets to the inside of his ear. Nothing. Went back to the vet again today and she tried on the outside of the ear - Eureka! Worked like a charm with just enough of a blood droplet. Dr. Borg was pleased and shaved a bit of fur from each ear to make it easier for me to see. We will test over the weekend to ascertain the dosage is doing its job and hopefully, Henry will only have to be "vet-tested" every 3 months or so if things remain stable.
For two consecutive nights, Henry has only urinated on one protector pad and I haven't had to do the three loads of wash in the wee hours of the morning each time he soaked another pad. If Henry sleeps, "mom" sleeps. That is a Martha Stewart "Good Thing".
Sleep well, Henry, my Sweet Senior doxie. We've got your back!