Finally Healing!

Things with Storm are looking up! I am so relieved!

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Doesn’t it look great?!? It looks amazing compared to the other pics that I had posted! Ironically, when I took this shot a week or so ago, it looked like she was getting an infection again. I had seen her lick the site but I had no idea she was that obsessed with it. So, she is back on her antibiotic and the cone is on when I’m not next to her.

Things are going well with Storm learning how to be a tri-pawed. I haven’t taken her on a long walk yet but plan to soon. But her back leg is getting buff! 🙂 She is able to race up the stairs now and she can get up in a fluid motion from where she is laying down.

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I’m happy that she is still the same silly dog. 🙂

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A Few Lessons Learned

*Sigh*

*Once again, viewer discretion: Not for the faint-hearted*

Nothing is ever easy with this dog, but I knew that some time ago. I just kept hoping that it would change. I’m beginning to lose hope and accept reality as best as I can though.

Back to my nightmare story…

Surgery went well for Storm. She came hopping from the back of the vet clinic and slightly wagged her tail when she saw my mom and I waiting for her. It was very real at that point as I saw the stitched up part where they amputated her back leg. My eyes became a little misty.  They said she was on some pain meds but that should last 24 hours and to call if she needed more. They gave me the option of giving them to me at that moment but I declined, I just wanted to hurry and get her safe at home.

That first night was rough. I tried sleeping on the floor next to her as my bedroom was up a flight of stairs and I knew she wouldn’t be able to make it. But like any mom, I wanted to be near her that first night. Around 3 AM I finally got up and went to my bed. I wasn’t getting any sleep on that floor (only have a love seat so not many options).  I woke up later that morning to find her in my bedroom. Actually, I’m pretty sure she woke me up… But yeah, I guess she didn’t want to be away from Mommy so she somehow made it up the flight of stairs. It warmed my heart that she wanted to be with me that badly. Yet, what the fuck was she thinking going up those stairs?!? She could have made things worse!

She learned what she could and couldn’t do pretty quickly. By the second or third day, she was getting along pretty good! Stairs are still a little difficult but I imagine she will get the hang of them soon.

Well, things were okay for a while but she started to bleed from one of the spots between staples. After a short time I decided to tell the vet and brought her over there. Sure enough, as soon as we got there it stopped bleeding and I felt (perhaps looked too) like a crazy person. I felt like when I had my lemon POS car and would bring it in because it kept stalling. They would run diagnostics on it and say it’s fine then stall on my way home.

A few hours later it started to bleed heavily again and the clinic said to bring her in. She continued to bleed and my vet decided to wrap her up to help stop the bleeding and to help contain the blood so it wouldn’t get everywhere in my house.

Four or five hours later, I noticed blood on the blanket under Storm and checked her bandages. She had bled through them. It really worried me how much blood she was losing, I didn’t feel it was normal.

 

I asked my friend what she thought since she works at a vet clinic and she said I should bring Storm in the next morning. I knew I couldn’t leave her to sit in the bloody bandages. I had some gauze and wrap left over from earlier so I was going to see if I could take care of her. I cut the last piece and had her stand so I could attempt to wrap her myself. Blood, I’m guessing that had been pooling due to her bandage, came out in a stream on my couch. Imagine if you took a ketchup bottle and squeezed it upside down. That is exactly what it looked like. I freaked out!! I didn’t know what to do and I didn’t have enough hands so I called my sis and told her that I needed her to come over. Thankfully, she was at my mom’s down the street and shortly she arrived.

After running in circles like a chicken with its head cut off, my sister suggested that we go to the only ER vet in town (a different vet company from where she had her leg amputation). They were sooooo nice! And they did a wonderful job with her!

She had gotten another infection. 😦 There was a certain spot that I didn’t like seeing.

They were concerned about it as well and that it might be necrosis (what happened to her foot), so she was put on antibiotics, antiflammatory, and pain pills.

I ended up talking to the surgery specialist and we put her on different antibiotics after he received information regarding a culture we decided to do. She began to thrive and her wound began looking better! We had her staples removed exactly two weeks after surgery and just the other day she took her last pill.

Along with the mental stress this whole ordeal had on me, I was physically cleaning and doing laundry every single day. She had a very high chance of getting worse so I couldn’t have her in a dirty environment. I don’t know how I got through the last few weeks. My Mom and sister are such a blessing for what they had to put up with when helping me.

Since I have been able to finally relax a little, my Lupus and Fibro has been kicked into overdrive. I have been in a lot of pain for at least a week now. Hence, why it has taken me so long to let you all know the rest of this story.

The biggest thing I learned about this event is go get a 2nd opinion!! Especially if all the people around you are telling you to! Everyone told me to, but I had faith in this one veterinarian. There were things he could have done better. I feel that he was very negligent. Even so, I am not going to seek legal action due to my own reasons. I just will make sure never to go there again…

 

 

A Nightmare

*Viewer discretion: Not for the faint-hearted*

Wow… I should have knocked on wood after I finished my last post. Storm’s leg condition spiraled downward fast and started to affect the hair/skin past her foot. Her foot became so bloody which left my house bloody. Blah!

 

My sister saw Storm’s condition and was going to make me bring her into the vet’s on the day I wrote my last post. She was even going to pay for the bill herself. I didn’t make an appointment at first but then decided to take her up on her offer and bring Storm in on the next day.

I brought Storm in around 2:00 and she was all smiles to the vet techs, while she had blood dripping down her foot. They took a sample from her foot wound and went to check it. My vet came back into the room and told me her foot was dead. “There is no blood flowing in her foot,” he told me making sure I understood what he meant. I had a suspicion that he would say something along those lines. I held it together while talking to him about what to do next. He mentioned the foot had to come off as it is useless and to try and stop the infection from spreading. I asked him a few more questioned and said that I needed to take the time to see if my mom would let me borrow some money. I also had to think about where I would want them to cut, at her knee or hip. It was just so much to take in…

Seeing the foot was dead, I asked if there was any reason to keep the cone still on her. He said no but to maybe wrap her foot in a sock or something to help with the blood getting everywhere at home.

As soon as I left I realized I needed someone to talk to, but it was in the middle of the day and everyone was still working. I tried calling my dad but after a miscommunication on my part he called right back. I told him Storm’s foot was dead and immediately began sobbing. I told him that I knew it was just a foot but it still had a huge impact on me. He understood and sat on the phone with me for a bit as I released all my sadness and frustration. We got off the phone and I realized my mom had just gotten off work so I called her and told her the news as well.

I came home and decided to wrap her foot so she didn’t have to wear that annoying collar anymore. I had leftover gauze and wrap from the night before when I tried wrapping it. I soon found out that I didn’t have enough of each and only half of her foot was wrapped. I quickly ran to Walmart to pick up the items and went right back home.

I opened my door and I saw blood all over the floor. Blood all over my love seat. Blood all over her foot—-no, wait. The blood was from inside her foot. She ate half of her foot.

I slowly came inside while creeping her way. She had blood smeared over the side of her face. I remember saying “no” and “Storm” over and over again. She didn’t seem fazed, she just watched me. I called my mom and with difficulty told her she needed to come over ASAP, that I needed help. My mom came inside and had a hard time with the scene as well. She told me to call the vet so we could bring her back in. We wrapped her stump with a couple kitchen towels and seeing that I was in no shape to drive, my mom drove us to the vet.

While originally talking to my dad about where to amputate, he mentioned a couple of points that helped me to make the decision of amputating her leg at the hip. We were told that she would have emergency surgery the next day.

 

I am stopping this post for now as I am sure it is quite a bit to take in for my loyal readers. This story doesn’t stop at this point though, sadly it continues and I will write another post hopefully soon.

 

Storm’s Never-ending Leg Issues

*Warning Includes pictures: Not for the faint-hearted

Annnnnd I’m back! Although I don’t write many blog posts or always reply to comments, I do “okay” with reading some of your blog posts. You may have noticed that I have been a little more quiet lately. Well, I meant to put one of my notifications in my spam e-mail and wasn’t thinking that ALL my WordPress notifications would go there. I suspect WP received a message or that e-mails were returned, and WP shut off my notices, email notifications, etc. Which is fine! I’m not blaming them for my less than stellar thinking. It sadly took me a couple weeks to realize that I had not read particular posts. Any-who, I have changed things under my WP account and am once again good to go.

I decided to try a mouth guard to help with my head and neck pain. I can’t afford a decent one from a dentist so I purchased one at the local store that you can do at home. One night after doing the annoying process of making the molds, I put it in. It certainly takes time to become used to it and I’m not exactly having luck with it. I have been taking it out of my mouth while I sleep. Soooooo that project is currently on hold.

Storm’s leg that had the torn ACL is once again giving her (us) Hell. This time it is her foot. A few days ago, I noticed that one of the paw toes(?) had started to swell up.

I was thinking that maybe she was reacting to a bug bite or sting. But then it become worse…

And worse…

and continued going downhill it seemed…

This all was within a day or so. I brought her to my new vet and he wasn’t sure what to make of it. He found her pulse near her foot and said it was strong. He swabbed part of her foot and the results came up as bacterial infection (which is what her knee comes up as when it’s acting up). So she has 14 days of medication and it is taking FOREVER to start working.

At the vet’s 2nd time

The next day after a full dose of her medication, her foot looked worse. I brought her in for a quick look and my vet said it IS healing, that it will just look like it’s not. He also mentioned that for the healing process, it will keep filling with fluid until the skin splits open, then releasing all the fluid.

NASTY!!!

Just like when her leg acts up, she has begun leaking blood everywhere. I tried to wrap up her foot but don’t have anything that works. So for now, she is mostly confined to the love seat. I even bring her food to her at the love seat.

I feel horrible for her, she looks so uncomfortable. When laying, her foot is constantly moving and she cannot find a position that is comfortable. The vet said she is not in pain but I beg to differ. The only time she does not seem uncomfortable is when she is sleeping.

 

 

What Stress?

I want to apologize for not replying to all comments right away–I’m horrible at it. Which baffles me because I figured I would be good at it. Many times I am reading and replying to comments, then something shiny (a text message, an e-mail, taking Storm out–not that that is always “shiny” but you catch my drift) catches my eye. And when that happens, I usually forget what I was doing or working on. That is the product of my Lupus/Fibro Fog. Every so often I try to remember to go through the comments and see the ones that I have missed. The key words there are “try to remember.”

I found something I need to look at when feeling low. I suggest you look at Thug Unicorn on FB for some feel good and ass kicking mantras.  

from Facebook
from Facebook

These last two, or three (?) weeks have been very painful for me. Headaches (although at times they feel like migraines), earaches, neck and upper back pain non-stop, all day, every day.  I tried a few things and they didn’t work. I didn’t want to visit my doctor though because I knew what he would say, that I’m clenching my jaw at night and tensing up. Last time this happened, he couldn’t figure anything out so I went to an ear specialist. But that was so long ago that I can’t remember what the specialist said, all I know is that nothing came of it. My doctor decided though to switch up my night meds a little and see if it would help. I didn’t notice any difference that first night, so along with my new meds he also wanted me to take my old ones. Oh man, I slept soooo deep it was fabulous! Take that, insomnia! Ha! I love sleeping even more now. The downside is I am still in pain during the day. So I need to make another call to the doctor.

Like most people, I Googled my symptoms and I am fairly certain I have TMJ (The temporomandibular joint) issues. It mentions for TMJ issues that I would need to see a dentist. Well Medicare doesn’t cover dentistry. So, once I get my next monthly funds, I will be purchasing a mouth guard for night. I should have gotten a mouth guard years ago as I also grind my teeth at night. But I kept putting it off, maybe part being in denial that I actually need one. This time the pain is too great to not get one to see if it helps.

This pain has made me aware though, how much I am lacking with my mindfulness and meditation. So I am forcing myself to get back into those habits. I feel they truly make a difference in my life and I feel that life is better with those habits.

Oh So Pretty

My lack of Storm pictures has been bugging me but I think that is mostly due to the cold weather. I had some flowers in my possession (thanks to my kind neighbor) so decided to take advantage of them. Now, I realize my pictures are nothing too crazy, but I’m posting them anyway. 🙂

I just love that face.
I just love that face.