A few of you have written in to ask me how our new dog, Lucky, has been getting along after his surgery. (See this post for more of the back story.) You might remember this was where we left the story...
Yesterday, we had him fixed.
The surgery didn't go very well apparently, since his stuff is swollen up 3x what it was and he's obviously in a lot of pain. (He has a vet appointment at 4:30 so they can look him over again.) All day today, he's been whining and won't lay down anywhere but in my lap - which means no real blogging or doing much but sitting on the couch and watching TV with a big muffin-head in your lap. (It's taken since this morning to write all this in between lap-time.)
And I'm thinking Lucky doesn't feel so lucky right about now.
Things haven't improved for Lucky. He's had several vet visits since the surgery after more complications. Read on for the tale. If you're not that interested let me at least give you one piece of advice: Don't get your dog or cat fixed at Indianapolis FACE Clinic. [WARNING:] Disgusting photos after the jump!
We'd taken Lucky back to FACE Clinic the day after his surgery since it looked so awful. They told us to give him Benadryl and try to use a cold compress. The veterinarian didn't seem concerned in the least. In fact, she spent about 3 minutes with him total and shooed us out the door. In a couple days his stuff had started to go down and since he wasn't licking we'd take his Elizabethan collar off of him while we could watch him. I, however, (like a dumbass) left the house for over an hour without putting the collar back on him while I was gone. He must have licked the entire time I was gone, because that night it was all swollen and red and irritated again. We called FACE and had to take him back last Thursday - one week from the previous visit.
This time the doc spent a tad more time with us, but still wasn't exactly "friendly." She gave him a shot of penicillin and another shot of steroids to help the swelling. She gave him antibiotics and prescribed aspirin buffered with Maalox. Now, remember - he originally had problems with his blood clotting and this is what caused the problem to start with. She'd told us that it was common for pitt bulls to have this problem. Aspirin thins the blood. When I questioned her, she brushed me off with "It's for pain and it'll help the inflammation." Since she's the authority and I'm not, we followed her advice.
Yesterday Lucky had to go to the emergency vet instead of back to the FACE Clinic after he started bleeding heavily from his incision site. I mean heavy too - over half a roll of paper towels soaked with blood, bloody carpets, blood on the hardwood and linoleum, lots and lots of blood. I've helped farm animals give birth and I can honestly say I've never seen that much blood in my life. When we got him to the emergency vet he was dizzy from blood loss. In the first picture, Lucky is sitting in the vet's office. Notice the towel with blood spots. Every time he sat down he'd leave a splotch; when he stood up, he left large drops of blood behind him where he walked. He wouldn't sit still for long either - he was very agitated and I'd imagine that his junk hurt when he'd sit down since it was swollen and bleeding profusely.
This picture shows a close up of Lucky sitting down for about a minute and how much blood he was losing. Can you imagine losing that much blood so quickly? Horrifying! Sadly, I had to argue with the FACE Clinic vet on the phone about getting him in to see an emergency veterinarian. At one point (after three or four phone calls about how serious Lucky's problem was) she called back and just said, "I'll have her [the assistant] call you back." and she hung up on me. She was just entirely too nonchalant about the whole ordeal and just said, "Don't give him another aspirin and bring him in to see me tomorrow morning."
After calling another vet who was insistent that Lucky should be seen immediately, I was finally able to convince FACE to send me to whomever it was they had a relationship with for emergencies. That doctor was horrified to find out the original vet had Lucky on an aspirin regimen and a low dosage of antibiotics. He also said that line about pitt bulls and bleeding was horse pucky. Instead, as the vet I had called said, FACE does about 40-50 spay/neuters a day and they just run them through like an assembly line. Problems are common when that low standard of care is taken. Since our trauma yesterday I've spoken to several folks about FACE and almost all of them have said the same thing: "Never go to FACE because they treat the animals like a factory line." I wish someone had told us before we took the poor dog there.
So Lucky is cooped up in the kitchen now. He's still bleeding more than I'd like, but not as heavily now that the aspirin has gone out of his system. He's not happy about being stuck in there and keeps trying to escape. Thankfully, this ordeal seems to have brought him and the cat together finally. The little guy keeps nuzzling up to Lucky and cleaning the blood off of his back legs when Lucky will let him. Only a month ago they couldn't be in the same room together without major issues. So what's the moral of the story? If you live in Indianapolis, pay the extra $100 and go to a real veterinarian. Avoid the FACE Clinic at all costs. Because no animal deserves to have this happen. Lucky survived becoming a fighting dog only to end up losing more blood and having more pain caused by a common surgery that shouldn't have been such a traumatic event.
So since Jasmyne Cannick likes to set up false dichotomies about which is worse - this or that - I'd like to ask one myself... Which is worse? Those who train the dogs for fighting, blood loss and death or those that almost cause death through blood loss after not taking adequate care of them?