So… back in August I found out that my dog Hermes had a giant, softball sized tumor in his spleen. (I wrote about it here.) One emergency surgery, two doggy blood transfusions, and thousands of dollars later, my pooch seemed to be on the mend. Then I noticed something odd.
It was the weekend that I got back from my trip to Georgia. I decided to paint the back porch. It’s been needing it for years, and with winter coming, I decided it was finally time to get out the paintbrush and take care of it. I spent most of that Sunday, and a few more hours on Monday night, outside painting. (It needs some touch-ups, but it has been so cold lately, I’m glad I got done what I did, when I did.) I had Hermes outside with me on a tie-out so he could sniff around the yard and lay out in the sun.
It was sometime after that, that I caught him eating grass. Now, the last time he was in at the vet she had told me that when dogs eat grass it is frequently because they are nauseous. That made me worry, but when he vomited in the living room, I wasn’t terribly surprised. In fact, I hoped he got whatever it was out of his system. Sadly, that didn’t prove to be the case. For the next couple of days, every time I took him out he mowed grass like he was a cow, and then puked it back up, usually on my carpet. (Ever notice that dogs almost never throw up on the linoleum? They’ll walk off the nice easy-to-clean-up floor to make sure and hit the rug.) There was also another odd thing. We’d be out on a walk and he’d suddenly stop and stretch. It was weird. Hermes is usually all “go-go-go” on a walk. Stopping in the middle for a stretch just struck me as odd.
Then that Thursday morning we went out for a walk and after a few blocks, he just laid down. He refused to walk. I ended up picking him up and carrying him all the way home. Forty pounds of dog, five or six blocks – I’ll tell you, I was glad I do strength training! I was petrified the whole way home and knew it was time to call the vet. Honestly, I knew I was going to anyway, but after everything with his health back in August, I was scared stiff. I had almost convinced myself that he had another tumor, and this was the end for my little buddy.
So, I brought him to the vet. They did an exam and then they did a test for pancreatitis, which was the next least expensive test they could do that might be the cause. It wasn’t that though, so naturally, he had to have x-rays. (My dog has had so many x-rays, I really should get a bulk discount.) They didn’t find any tumors, what they found was gas bubbles, big ones, and when the rolled him over on the table… he then dispelled said gas.
When the vet told me this, I started giggling, “Oh gosh, doc. I am kind of glad I am not you right now.” She said, “Oh LongView…. it is impressive! I mean, just… wow.”
They suspect that when he was out with me he found something terrible in the back forty of my yard. Most of my yard is well maintained, but there is an area at the back that is pretty wild – like open meadow. He loves it, but I suspect there was something awful (or delicious depending on if you are me or a dog,) that he got into back there. So, the vet gave him a shot for nausea, and I put him on a bland diet. Since then, he’s been doing great. The good news is that I have my four-legged trainer back to his old self again. The bad news is the money I had started to save up again? Yeah…. ah well.