Note: Feel free to skip this post if you’re not a dog person.
Also note: I am human. I recognize the title might suggest otherwise.
One more note: I’m assuming you already know I’m one of those people who is freakishly attached to her dog. Or I guess I’m not assuming it, since I just spelled it out for you. She’s my best pal and I pity my friends for the aftermath when she goes to doggie heaven someday.
A few weeks ago Ruby Dogwonkafonka got her teeth cleaned, and while they had her knocked out the vet removed a little wart on her side. I was angsty – I get angsty anytime my dog has a procedure requiring general anesthesia – but everything went well. Growth was nothing to worry about, dog came through just fine, improved breath – all good. All we had to do was make it through the healing process and we’d be rocking and rolling.
The first couple of days went great – I could tell a few times she wanted to scratch or nip at the stitches, I could literally see the internal conflict, but catching my eye always brought about the right reaction of leaving the incision alone. Saturday morning I left her alone for the first time. Not unattended for the first time – she’d had plenty of solitude hanging outside in the yard. First time fully alone.
A few hours later when I returned….gack. Stitches were gone. And for the Queen of Squeamish, I thought I was going to pass out when I saw the hole in my dog’s side. (There wasn’t really a hole, exactly. But definitely an open wound.) Gah. I was also terrified of what kind of hideous pools of blood must have been waiting for me inside the house.
I. FREAKED THE FUCK OUT.
Like, really, a lot.
The dog was all, “I know I did something bad but I could not be less concerned about the hole in my side can I go out and play and get away from your crazy?”
Further investigation throughout the house revealed….nothing. I don’t know how she did it, but my dog opened up her wound without getting any blood anywhere in my house. Either that, or she did some serious cleaning. Whichever, good dog.
When I called the vet, they didn’t seem nearly as wigged out – apparently this kind of thing happens. This had a calming effect on me. What did not have a calming effect was taking the dog back to get replacement staples. I had to exit the exam room and rock in the lobby covering my ears while they did it, and I still almost melted down when the sound of Ruby yelping made it past the less-than-effective earhandmuffs.
We left the vet’s office and went straight to PetSmart so we could implement the Zero Freedom Act of 2013, aka the Cone of Shame. Fortunately, my friend Liz had mentioned an alternative to the satellite dish version and I quickly ponied up 3x the money for a more comfy looking style. It basically looks like a neck pillow you would wear on a transatlantic flight, and it was totally worth it.
I have to say, the dog was a trooper, but I was a pretty big stress case for the better part of a week while we established our groove. Week two was better. Then the staples came out (another horrific experience that left me shaking after they made me hold her while they removed them – I mentioned I’m squeamish, right?), we kept the collar on for a few extra days, and then the first time she got the chance, she went for the wound, the little shit. Now almost a month later, we seem to be in the clear. The incision has almost completely healed and fur is growing back.
Which brings me to my original thought. How do you people with actual little humans do this shit? Kids must get hurt and/or require medical attention roughly 92 billion times more often than dogs. I don’t want to get so used to blood and grossness that it doesn’t make me freak out, because that means I would be seeing A LOT of blood and grossness and omg just no. But also the watching of the misery and suffering when your wee one is sick or hurt. Gah. I don’t think I could deal.
Please note, this is not to suggest this is the only reason it’s good that I’m not a parent. There are many, and I’m sure we’ll revisit the topic in the future. And there are also maybe four reasons I would have been a rockin’ mom. For now, though, I’m just going to breathe a sigh of relief that this episode is behind us and my fur baby is almost whole again. 🙂