So, you know how I said Hermione seemed to be on the mends? Well, Tuesday was a bit of a rough day. Not "Oh, we need to go the vet right now!", but more like "things aren't getting. better..a bit worse and I'm worried."
Tuesday Hermione refused to eat any dog food at all. By this point we had figured out that it wasn't whatever stung her, but rather something was wrong with her bum. So, I called Lindsay over to see if she could help me express Hermione's anal glands.
Anal glands are small glands near the dog's poop spot at about 4 and 8 on a clock's face. They can potentially become too full and infected if a dog isn't having regular poops. I was convinced that it was her glands.
Lindsay wasn't able to come until Wednesday because she was working. So, I spent much of Tuesday fussing and worrying. Hermione didn't want to have anything to do with food or water and that was freaking me out. However, she would allow me to spoon frozen blueberries into her mouth and she'd eat them. If I balled pureed pumpkin up small enough and dropped it into her mouth, she'd swallow it. I even made her some chicken broth which she drank some of.
That said, her heart rate was normal and she didn't have a fever. She was also going out to the bathroom and walking around if I took her out on leash.
I had put her flea stuff on the day before which never reacts well with her. In the hopes of making things easier for her system, I gave her a bath, washing away the flea medication. I also took the opportunity to trim the feathers away from her bum and feel her whole body all over. She's so quite furry, so feeling her structure is easier when her fur is wet. I didn't feel anything abnormal.
My parents stopped by that night to see her. Dad had dropped off the pureed pumpkin for me earlier in the day. Hermione didn't even get off the chair or wag her tail. Mom picked her up and at one point accidentally squished her bum. Hermione yelped. Mom also looked at her butt and said it was red and irritated.
I was further convinced it was anal glands.
Wednesday came and she seemed a bit perkier. She still didn't want dog food, but would let me shove blueberries into her mouth as well as the pumpkin. She wasn't too happy about it, but as long as she was swallowing I kept feeding it to her. I usually just gave her little bits at a time about every three hours or so. She was still going out to the bathroom. So, that was encouraging.
Lindsay arrived Wednesday afternoon and we spirited Hermione off to the bath tub to express her glands. Hermione yelped which we thought might happen, but upon closer inspection, Lindsay realised her bum didn't look right. There seemed to be a hole of sorts near her poop hole.
Now, it was time for the vet.
As I called the vet, we cleaned Hermione's bum with some therapeutic grade witch hazel. I think it stung a bit, but that just meant it was cleaning.
My first call to the vet sent me directly to voice mail. I left a message. They still haven't returned my call.
Mr. K had started looking stuff up on the internet because that is what he does. He had Lindsay describe what it looked like and when he found something he thought to be right, he showed her.
Turns out he diagnosed her.
While they were researching, Lindsay had called the vet on her cell phone and they answered. I talked to them and explained. They told me that they didn't have any appointments until Friday so I would have to bring her in for the day and they would call me once the vet finally got to her. Then, they would let me know how much everything would cost and what our plan of action was.
Um, how about no?
Don't you have emergency appointments?!!
What vet doesn't have emergency appointments?
Especially a vet office that has over ten vets working there plus their dozen or so vet Techs. I was furious.
According to the stuff Mr. K found, Hermione had blown out one of her anal glands. The concern with this, of course, is infection. However, other than giving her anti-biotics, there isn't anything vets can do for her; unless hers was so bad and she needed surgery. Hers wasn't that bad.
The instructions we found told us to keep it clean which we've done with the witch hazel and to keep her from licking. That's been the fun part. I can't tell you how many different types of doggie diapers we've made in the last few days. She's so small that she can get out of everything. Mom and I even bought her a baby diaper shirt, but it was just a tad too small and wasn't wide enough to cover her bum. She's currently wearing one of my t-shirts with her head poking through the sleeve. She's not too happy, but it works. We are also to put anti-biotic ointment on her which we have also been doing.
Since yesterday she's eaten two full meals and drank her fill of water. She even hopped around when I let her out of her crate this morning. Yesterday she wagged her tail, and bum, when Mom came over. Just that little bit of ointment and cleansing has made a huge difference.
I'm still feeding her pumpkin to keep her poop soft so that she doesn't strain while going. We think that is how she ruptured the gland in the first place. It will take some time for her to heal fully, but she is definitely on the mends. We are just paying very close attention to ensure there aren't any signs of infection. If anything crops up that is worrying, we'll be going to the vet; just not that one. Her bum apparently looks less irritated today than yesterday and it looks like it's healing. So, we'll just have to keep on it. Thankfully, she's not a labrador and is being quiet and resting. The dress-like t-shirt may be helping with that.
So, it was a bit stressful the last couple of days, but I think she's getting better. Fingers crossed.
My poor little princess.