Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Post-op Day 5: e-collar HELL

By 11PM last night, I was wiped out from Maeby's shaking scare and ready to go to bed.

Maeby had on her lampshade style e-collar and slept for a few minutes... but the second the lights went off, she started thrashing all over her x-pen. I put the lights back on, and made the pen smaller, but she was all bug eyed and wouldn't relax. I gave her Rescue Remedy, but she still stayed anxious. She started to shake and breathe very erratically. I thought maybe it was an effect of the F-patch still wearing off, but the minute I took the collar off, she stopped.

I tried putting on her pro-collar (even though it doesn't do a darn thing bc her neck and nose are so long!) and the same thing happened. Crazy breathing, bugged out eyes. I eventually got one of those "baseball tshirts," the ones with the 3/4 sleeves and stuck her leg in one sleeve, and cut the end of a pair of old fishnet stockings I have and covered the tshirt with that. I slept DIRECTLY next to her crate with the door open and lights on, so I could monitor if she started licking, or if my t-shirt concoction came off.

I pretty much woke up EVERY HOUR until about 5am. It kept coming off, or she'd start licking. I was so tired, I tried the lampshade again, and yes, she flipped out again in her quiet, scary way. So finally I put EACH LEG in a sleeve, pushed her tail through the head hole,pulled the rest of the shirt up around her bottom, and tied the excess up with a rubber band.

We slept peacefully until around 7:30. And when we woke up, it was still on! Hallelujah!

Too bad the minute she stood up to eat, it slipped right off. It was my first day back at work today, so I HAD to leave her at home with something.

I decided to play tough mommy and left her home with the lampshade. She wasn't as panicky about it when I left for work this morning, but I was still worried. I wasn't sure how I'd find her when I came home for lunch. Shredded doggie bed? Ex-pen on the other side of the room? Or, God forbid, Maeby laying motionless??

SHE WAS FINE! That little drama queen. She just really really hates the darned lampshade, but will survive. There are a lot of other collars that seem better, like the soft-collar (looks like a big disk) or flexible e-collar (like the lampshade, but made out of fabric) but by the time I get a new one, her staples will be out.

I bought some Impatiens over my lunch break, and am giving that along with the Rescue Remedy now. (of course, with lots of love and treats too!)

I also have to add that the people on the orthodogs list are WONDERFUL. I left a frantic post this morning about my horrible experience last night, and people were so incredibly thoughtful and supportive, offering funny stories and alternative ideas. Apparently, panicking is QUITE NORMAL. And though it may seem impossible, the dog will grow accustomed to the e-collar and will stop acting crazy after a few days. Someone on the list now is experiencing what can happen if you give in: Her dog kept licking the incision, it wouldn't heal properly, stiches kept popping open, and now the dog has a horrible infection that needs to be treated with additional antibiotics. THANKFULLY, it's a relatively benign strain of bacteria! Moral of this story: DON'T GIVE INTO YOUR PANICKING DOG! Try Rescue Remedy, Benedryl, lots of treats, ANYTHING. But that incision really needs to heal properly otherwise you're in for so much more trouble later.

my (not so brilliant) idea