Sunday, January 19, 2014

NOT How We Want to Start the New Year

  While we were disappointed that 2013 ended without a championship for Gibson, we have high hopes that 2014 will be a great year.  So far, the prospect is dim!
  We bred Gemma in November to a wonderful, rough, tricolor with a fun personality.  Shortly before Christmas, Gemma was showing positive signs of pregnancy--increased appetite, expanding tummy and sleepiness.  There were some days within the last week that I could barely raise her to go outside, she was so content to nestle into her dog bed and doze.  I cleared my calendar for this upcoming week and started to prepare the whelping room.
  We went to the vet this past Monday for an x-ray to see just how many puppies she was carrying.  To my surprise, the number was 0!  Gemma was having a false pregnancy.  We're disappointed, of course, but will try again when she comes into season in late summer.
  I then decided that Gemma  needs to get back into the show ring before becoming a mama, so we have some work to do to get her back into shape.  She's not pleased with her return to the kennel, the cutting back of food and treats and the long (3-4 miles) walks we're taking daily.  I'm not pleased that the temperature is supposed to dip again this week.  I enjoy the walks, but not in temps of the low 20's!
  Lauren was also in season at the same as her granddaughter, Gemma.  About 6 weeks after they finished their cycles, I noticed a spot on the floor in the dogs' room.  Since we had had rainy weather, I wasn't sure if it was mud or dull colored blood.  I couldn't find any spotting on any of the girls, so assumed it was dirt (and they were dirty that day).  A few days later, I found another couple of spots but this time found a bit of discharge on Lauren.  I started watching her but the pattern stayed the same-nothing for a few days then a couple of spots.  It was never bright red, so I assumed she was having hormonal issues, as she is almost ten years old.
  On Thursday morning, I was greeting with lots of blood on the floor that was a much brighter red.  A trip to the vet was made in the afternoon, and as I was afraid, Lauren had pyometra--a potentially life threatening condition.  The decision was made to spay her first thing Friday morning and she was going to stay overnight at the vet's for observation and to receive fluids.
  I was very nervous during her scheduled surgery time.  Finally, I got the word that she had done well, it was definitely pyometra and I could pick her up about 5:30 that evening.  We were very lucky that Lauren had done so well.  She never had a temperature and the infection didn't go further than her uterus.  When I asked my vet if the outcome had been different if I had brought Lauren in when I first saw the spotting, he said no.  He said he would have advised exactly what I had done, monitor her closely and see if it developed into anything.
  Lauren was still pretty groggy when I arrived, but knew who I was when I knelt by her crate.  She came out and buried her head in my chest, ready to go home!
  She is recuperating quickly.  Lauren wasn't very hungry on Friday night, needing two sessions to finish her light dinner, but ate her full breakfast and dinner yesterday.  She's already barking this morning to let us know she's ready for breakfast (I better wrap up this blog entry, is what she's saying!)
  During yesterday morning's re-check at the vet, we found out that Lauren had escaped from her crate after her surgery.  She was in a crate that will open if pushed in the right way, which she discovered.  Lauren wandered into the waiting room, weaving about, but awake enough to greet people and get some petting.  She's always a glutton for attention!
  We're so glad to have our girl home and in good health again.  This isn't how we wanted to start the New Year, but hopefully it will only get better from this point on.

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