Saturday, February 05, 2011

Pure Terror

Some things in life may seem innocuous - useful even - but they can also scare the crap out of usually sane and serene beings.

This is such a thing.

The mere sight of it was enough to reduce the victim to a quivering, shaking mess.

A drop of blood spattered the floor as the victim thrashed and ran haphazardly to get away from it.

Pain was nothing: escape was all.

However, the battle was lost and the thing won.

Well, for five minutes at least.

With Milly's rump looking like a particularly painful leg of roast pork, we were given strict instructions to put an 'Elizabeth Snap Collar' on her. The Cone of Shame, in other words.

The post-operative instruction sheet read: "You must discourage jumping or activity of any kind that will cause excessive stretching of the wound, especially during the first few days."
In her wild-eyed terror, our poor dog tried to run away from the hazy plastic prison that was clipped around her neck. Furniture was overturned, walls smashed against and nails frantically scratched the floor and we watched in anguish as her leg buckled, twisted and stretched.

Love Chunks couldn't bear it. "Let's give the poor girl the benefit of the doubt," he said, unclipping Milly's spiteful spirit-crusher.

With no painkillers provided, we've caught her giving the wound a sly lick only a couple of times and she's much happier. I'd like to conclude by saying that the cruelty ended there, but it didn't. As she lay sleeping off the last of the anaesthesia that had changed her beautiful eyes from almonds to puckered diamonds, I placed the collar next to her beanbag and waited for her to wake.

This is the only photo I could bring myself to take before she fully regained consciousness, sprung up in fear and sprinted up the passage to the front door. "Milly, calm down - your stitches........!"

Maybe it'll come in handy as a mini greenhouse for baby herbs.


Hannah said...

Poor Milly! I feel like I should know this, but what happened? Well done her for being mature about the wound. I remember Jedda had one of those collars after being desexed, and Evan and I thought it was hilarious to put a treat on the floor, because she was small enough that with the collar, her head couldn't reach the treat.

Okay, that sounds really mean. I promise we always gave her lots of treats afterwards to make up for the laughter...

Kath Lockett said...

We found a lump in her leg about the size of a sultana and when I took her to the vet to check it out two days later it was twice the size. After spending over $1000 on examination, operation etc, I decided not to shell out $250 to send it off for testing: the vet thought it was cancerous but did her best to remove it, so we'll just keep an eye on it.

JahTeh said...

I wonder if you could utilise that collar for around your leg when catching Skipper?
I swear I've run through two lots of Tattslotto wins paying vet bills over the last 30 years. What I could have done with that money.
Milly will be okay until the stitches start to pull on the healing wound, that's when the collar might have to go back on.

Kath Lockett said...

Oh, you're right Jah Teh. I hadn't thought of that.

And vets' bills....! Instead of telling me the entire amount they exert pressure on you to agree to be humane and add each extra on top of the cost of the operation. "Would you like Milly to be put on a drip during the operation?"
"Um, yes, I think. Why?"
"Well, it helps her body process the antibiotics and anaesthetic much more easily and she'll cope with the aftermath and healing a lot better too."
"Then, yes, we'd like her to have that."
"Lovely." (fake smile). "So that'll cost $190.... "And would you like us to clean her teeth while she's under? There's a lot of build up there and her breath is particularly bad....
"Er, yes."
"That'll be an additional $70, but I can see just by looking that it'll make a big difference."
(Me, feeling slightly dismayed). "Er, ok."

"And would you like us to send the tumour off for testing once it's removed?"
"So that we know for sure if it's cancerous or not?"
"Yes. It'll cost $250."
"But if the vet cuts it all out, won't that be okay, whether it's cancer or not?"
(She, frowning). "Oh yes, the vet is very very good at what she does. But for your peace of mind...."

"We'll leave it. For my peace of mind and bank account we'll have to."

River said...

oh dear, poor Milly. Under the anaesthetic haze of half awareness, she must have been terrified. Perhaps if you'd waited until she was awake and more knowing that might have helped?
Anyway, as long as she's leaving the wound alone, she'll be fine without it. How is she coping? Did you find out if the lump was cancerous or not yet?

River said...

Oops, should read the other comments first, shouldn't I?

Jayne said...

We have a couple Elizabethan collars kicking around the house from various mischiefs the tribe have got up to (yes, I would dearly love to put one on the hubby but he's got his opposable thumbs working).
Hope Milly is up and about sans stitches soon!

Kath Lockett said...

River, we figure as long as the lump is out, it won't matter what it consisted of. Then again, LC was rubbing her belly tonight and felt another lump. Exactly the same size as the one on her leg.

Thanks Jayne. She's a lot perkier tonight which is a good thing but the rain and a very muddy garden means that she has to stay inside and stay dry and clean which she doesn't understand. Why are we being so mean?

Andrew said...

Ah, dogs get used to the collar quickly. Because they don't think too much, they are very adaptable. When we had dogs and cats, the vets did not lay guilt trips on us to the degree they seem to now. Although I do recall a large bill from a Werribee slash Monash place for overnight care. It was money wasted.

drb said...

Sorry to hear abt another lump. :-(
Will you get it out soon?

The Plastic Mancunian said...

G'Day Kath,

You should try putting one of those things on a cat. I still bear the scars, both mental and physical.




Word Verification: Sneeters: The official name for those plastic things.

Baino said...

Aww poor poppet. Lily had a total knee replacement six years ago and Clare drew antennae on the collar and wrote 'space dog'she seemed to appreciate the humour if not the collar. Hope the tumour is benign, she's such a sweetie.

Nicole said...

All dogs hate those things don't they? Hope she is feeling better

Kath Lockett said...

Andrew, 'guilt trips' is spot on.

drb, she's due for a check up of her stitches on Tuesday so I'll be asking about the lump in her belly then.

Oh Plasman, I'd *hate* to try and put a 'sneeter' on a cat!

Thanks Baino. She *is* a sweetie and currently sitting on my foot; something she does when she's not well and wants me to do something about it :(

Thanks Nicole. I think she's bored as much as feeling uncomfortable. No walks because the stitches are uncovered and the streets are filled with muddy puddles.

Anji said...

Poor Milly, I hope she's well on the way to normal by now

eleanor bloom said...

oh, the poor bubby! at least she's well-loved, well looked after.

ah, the cone of shame. know a few grown men who could do with...

Dirty Butter said...

We just went through this with a feral kitten we tamed and had spayed. Poor thing's head was so tiny she couldn't drink water or eat, so we took it off. Ended up taking her back to the vet for more stitches. Kept her in a cat cage for a week off and on after that. Spent 3 weeks trying to get her healed.

So we wish you good luck as Milly begins to feel better!

I follow you on ExposeYourBlog.

Kath Lockett said...

Thanks Anji - we'll find out tomorrow but she was NOT happy when Sapph and I went out this morning for a run (Sapph) and staggered walk (me).

Hello Eleanor! Long time no blog! Welcome back - more than happy to lend you the CoS if you need it for any blokes near your neck of the woods.....

Thanks Dirty Butter - I follow you too!

drb said...

Maybe you can wheel Mily in a shopping trolley or stroller when you go running/staggering.

franzy said...

I'm so cool I emailed you instead of commenting.

Also, I couldn't be arsed linkin the photo I sent.

Kath Lockett said...

drb - I can just see us going for our morning run (Sapph), self-pitying walk (moi) with Milly in a pram!

Franzy, I'll go and fire up my email right now....

The Elephant's Child said...

I am so sorry. I hope that Milly and you are OK. They wind their paws firmly into your heartstrings don't they?