Posts tagged ‘Food’
Princess Celestia has a dog named Vito that she adopted from the animal shelter. He’s a large dog, probably a shepherd, maybe even purebred. When she took him home it didn’t take long for him to start losing weight at an alarming rate. He was also constantly having little “accidents.” He ate ravenously but suffered from chronic diarrhea, and, worse yet, seemed to be starving to death.
Many of you may read this and assume the dog is diabetic (as would be my first guess) or that the dog has pancreatic cancer. Both are good guesses. But you would be wrong. Vito’s problem is caused by the failure of his pancreas to produce necessary enzymes to digest food efficiently. His disease is serious and life threatening, but it is easily treatable.
Princess Celestia had to pay for many rounds of expensive testing for Vito before he was finally diagnosed. However, once Vito was properly diagnosed she had already found an internet forum for owners of dogs with EPI. EPI is Vito’s disease, and it is an acronym for Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency.
The people on the EPI forum were able to put Princess Celestia in touch with other dog owners in the same situation, and they were able to help her with recommendations on medicine and enzymes and how to properly deliver enzymes to Vito. So, working in cooperation with her veterinarian and her friends on the EPI Forum, Princess Celestia was able to get poor Vito back into fighting shape.
EPI is a disease that is often fatally misdiagnosed or looked over. The people on the EPI forum are working to spread the word about EPI so no more dogs are put down or made to needlessly waste away. They are trying to raise awareness among veterinarians and to raise money towards research to combat the disease.
And now I’ve done my part by calling your attention to this website. If you’re an animal lover, then you should go check it out. You never know. You might save the life of a dog or cat one day…simply by knowing the symptoms of a rare but fatal disease.
The vet’s office called yesterday. I called them back and then drove home on my lunch hour to check on my dog. She doesn’t seem to fuss when she doesn’t think anyone’s around to hear it. All was quiet. I had her with her food and water in the spare bedroom. When I opened the door she was sitting, staring aimlessly. Her food is scattered. Her water bowl, that I change daily, is murky because she’s stepped in it and gotten food in it. I change it again.
I want to see what she’s like for a day without pain meds which should be easy because she fights me so when I try to give her pills (even when I trick her with peanut butter) that I am afraid that I am going to lose a finger. She doesn’t like to be confined (not even to be held or cuddled). She does fuss when I try to put her in the bed with me to sleep for the night. I put her in the spare bedroom again. I wonder if she hates me for giving her the Tylenol. Maybe she knows that I am the Joan Crawford of dog owners.
“No more peanut butter!”
This morning when I open the door of the spare bedroom she’s in the same spot as yesterday noon, sitting, staring aimlessly, but this time in the opposite direction. I speak to her in a soothing voice and bend down to pet her. She flinches like I’m going to hit her. I’ve never hit her in my life. Cuffed her under the chin perhaps, for discipline, but even that was exceedingly rare and not done forcefully but just for shock value. It’s like you might slap a toddler on the behind to keep him away from the stove. She’s never flinched when I’ve touched her before.
After a few minutes she comes out of the spare bedroom and starts bumping around the entire house. Minimal fussing and whining, thankfully. I don’t know. I really don’t know what to do. This doesn’t seem like much of a life for her. She’s frightened and doesn’t like to be touched. I have to make sure that she gets food and water since I’m afraid that she can’t find the bowls, though they are in the same spot they’ve always been.
I am supposed to take her in to the vet’s first thing on Wednesday so they can examine her again. They will keep her while I’m at work, and then I’ll come pick her up or whatever after I’m done. Or whatever is what I think will happen at this point. But I wonder if I am being fair to her. Maybe she likes stepping into her water bowl and bumping into things and soiling herself. Maybe she hates me. Maybe I am getting rid of her not to put her out of her misery but to put me out of mine since she’s no longer the affectionate animal she once was only a few days ago. I don’t know, and I am so sad.