Wednesday, December 13, 2017

I Seriously Don’t Handle Medical Emergencies Well

In the past, I’ve talked about how super well I handle medical emergencies for my kids, but when it comes to my pets, I’m just as special. Over the weekend, I was reminded how I have a hard time dealing with medical emergencies.

I blame the vast majority of my coping issues on my anxiety. When something happens, adrenaline instantly shoots through my body (as I’m sure it does for everyone), but that is then followed by a slideshow of worst-case scenarios that play through my brain. Every horrible, life-changing and threatening idea crosses my mind, which, as you can imagine, increases my stress and worry.

Past experiences also influence how I react to current emergencies. Some of you may recall the incident that occurred with the first corgi I ever owned. Since then, I’m convinced that any little thing that happens to my dogs will have deadly consequences. The vet in Laramie was used to and incredibly patient and caring when I called numerous times to ask questions, and the vet here in Nebraska has just had their first taste of my neurosis.

On Saturday, both of the corgis (Floki and Siggy) went to the vet for their yearly vaccinations. It was our first trip there since moving, and I was incredibly impressed by the facilities and the doctor. She was incredibly kind and helpful. We left with no issues.

There will be plenty of pictures of Floki, but heres one of Siggy hangin on the couch.

Later that evening, I was working on my computer while the dogs played in my office. At one point, Floki was laying on his back on the bed panting. I asked him if he was hot, and he just looked at me with his big brown eyes. A few moments later, he moved to lay near the wall, and that’s when I noticed the swelling around his eyes.

You can kind of tell from this picture that hes puffier than normal.

My heart leaped into my throat and I immediately looked up the vet’s number on the internet (it’s saved in my phone now). I could tell that it was an allergic reaction, and the first thing that ran through my mind was that he was going to swell up and asphyxiate. I had to get him to the vet as soon as possible.

Since it was a Saturday night, the answering service picked up. It explained that it was an emergency answering service only and that they couldn’t take general questions or regular appointments. It took f-o-r-e-v-e-r to get through the message, and I was sure my dog was going to go into convulsions before I could talk to anyone. Finally, I was told that if I wanted to proceed I needed to hit #1—which I did.

I did my best to speak slowly and coherently and not forget to leave my number. I then held the phone next to my chest and waited for the doctor to call back. I realized that standing like that was only going to add to my anxiety, so I tried to busy myself with other tasks so I didn’t go insane. I started to fold laundry, mumbling under my breath the entire time that the vet needed to call me back.

She did. Probably within 10 minutes of sending the message.

I told her what was going on, and she said that it probably wasn’t the vaccinations that caused the reaction but could possibly have been a spider bite. She asked if I had Benadryl in the house, and I went on a search. Of course, I didn’t, so I rushed to the store.

Another super fun fact about me is that it makes me anxious to take and distribute medicine. Even after the vet gave me instructions—that I wrote down—on how much Benadryl to give Floki, I checked it about 100 times, then still felt uncomfortable about giving him meds—even though I knew he needed them!

I contemplated giving him a half dose or a kid’s dose, then I told myself that the vet met Floki earlier that day, she knew how much he weighed, and she was the doctor, so I gave him the amount she told me to give him.

On the plus side, aside from being puffy, Floki never acted any different than normal. He was still his sweet, curious self. He shook his head a little more often, but he didn’t yip or just lay down. Even after giving him Benadryl, he stayed the same lovable corgi.

That, as you can imagine, made me feel better, but it took a long time for the swelling to go down. That made me worry that maybe he had been bitten by a black widow or a brown recluse, so I was asking my spouse what he thought. He reassured me that if the spider that had bitten Floki was poisonous, we would know. The poor baby would be in a ton of pain or his flesh would be rotting off his face. Surprisingly, hearing that helped a bit, even though it didn’t completely eradicate my worry.

This was later in the night after some Benadryl. His muzzle is still puffy, but he was doing a lot better.

By the next day, the swelling had gone down significantly. Yes, I awoke a couple of times during the night to check on my fur baby, but he was fine. He continued to improve, and by now, the swelling is completely gone and I’m sure Floki doesn’t remember anything that happened. I, on the other hand, will continue to have anxiety issues when it comes to medical emergencies.

The fur baby just hanging out and chilling.