The internist appointment went great! I think one of the goals for me was to see if I had faith in this person so that if he said we’d need to scope, that I would feel confident with him giving Jake anesthesia. You see, the scoping part, the diagnosis part, the surgical part – those cause far less worry for me then the anesthesia part. After our last surgery encounter, the plan was for Jake to never be put under again. But the good news is, I loved this dude!
Even before the appointment, while in the waiting room, there was excitement. Jake pee’d everywhere. I guess the overload of other dog smells got his juices flowing (pun intended) and he felt the need to mark every surface. Then, someone from ophthalmology took one look at Jake and called the entire practice out to see him. They marveled at his eyes and they assumed he was there to seem them. When they found out that was not the case, they gave us their card. Apparently they see themselves in Jake’s future. Also while in the waiting room we told 14 people about Sirius Republic after they all went ga-ga over Jake’s Holiday Monkey collar. At this point we both needed a nap!
Once in the examination room, Jake pee’d one more time, just for good measure. He does nothing half ass.
In the two days leading up to the appointment, it seemed like Jake might be improving. Where he was having 20 episodes a day, he’d only had about 10 on Tuesday and Wednesday. The internist thinks it’s his elongated soft palette and suggested he’ll need scoped. The plan would be to do a sedated laryngeal exam, then to anesthetize him, do the scope and have the surgical team on stand-by to deal with trimming his soft palette. He could not guarantee it would be smooth sailing with anesthesia but he did assure me they would investigate what was used before and would be prepared for challenges. Since there was some noted improvement, he was willing to wait a few weeks to do the scope. In the meantime he suggested two courses of treatment we could try if the condition does not go away or if it worsens (although if it worsens the scope would likely get moved up).
Two other things it could be (but are less likely) are nasal mites (I gagged) or an idiopathic allergy. Nasal mites are transmitted between dogs although I’m still not entirely sure how (and it still makes me gag). Although he does not think it’s the case, he suggested treating both dogs for the mites (a series of Ivermectin shots) and putting Jake on a steroid in the case it’s allergy related. He’s already on allergy medication so I honestly doubt the allergy part but am willing to try it all prior to having to scope.
Two final updates from the appointment. He said ‘I know it’s not what you are here for but you do know that Jake needs to see an orthopedic specialist for his hind legs and hips, right’? (Sidenote: The day after I got Jake I made an announcement that he would for sure have wheels one day). I said I did know we’d eventually see one but did not know he needed it just yet. The Internist admitted that he was not fully trained in orthopedics but that he’d bet money Jake had a luxating patella and some hip issues.
Jake. Was. Meant. To. Be. Mine.
Lastly, the doctor and I spoke about the joys of owning and rescuing older dogs. He then shared with me that he was involved in the treatment of one of the Victory dogs and I swear he tear’d up when he spoke of the spectacular transformation the dog made once it went from being caged, to isolation, to rescue and then finally, into a loving home. He saw this dog through to the end. Uh, yeah, I hugged him real hard. Twice.