Friday, February 13, 2009
Dr. Wonderful: “Even though the clinic is technically closed tomorrow, I have to go in a bleed a dog.”
Me: “Why do you have to bleed this dog tomorrow?”
Dr. W: “It’s a 90 pound husky that belongs to an ailing old man. His son is helping out, but he works Monday through Friday, and asked if we would let him come on Saturday morning. He’s the dog I told you about two weeks ago - the one that doesn’t like to be bled. So I’m going to have to restrain him and somebody else will have to bleed him.”
Me: “So who is that going to be? Can Katy or Beth bleed?”
Dr. W: “Well, no actually, and like I said, I have to restrain the dog.”
It was at this point I realized I was being requested to bleed the 90 pound husky that didn’t like to be bled. These days I mostly bleed cattle, but I have taken blood samples from my share of dogs, so I wasn’t too worried about it.
Valentine’s Day 2009
We planned on getting to the clinic, quickly bleeding the dog, and getting something to eat for our Valentine’s Day breakfast. The son was already there with the dog. Since the dog was more nervous in the presence of the son, we took the dog to the exam room to get the sample and left the owner’s son in the waiting room. As we walked away the son yelled out, “I love you Fritsy!”
Once we were behind closed doors, Wonderful backed the very large dog butt-first into a corner, then wrapped a gauze muzzle around his snout. He was so big the clinic muzzle wouldn’t fit on his head. Wonderful had a good hold around the dog’s neck, and Katy and Beth were on either side of Fritsy attempted to hold his front legs steady so I could get the blood sample.
What you need to know is that we didn’t need a big sample, just a few drops to test and see the glucose level in his blood. We use the exact same machine to monitor the level as a human diabetic would.
Fritsy wiggled, Fritsy growled, Fritsy pitched a grade A hissy fit – Fritsy pulled a “CUJO”.
Katy looked up.
Katy: “Wonderful, you should re-tie the muzzle. His mouth is half-way open!”
Dr. W: “No, no, I’ve got him, it’s ok, just get the sample!”
We wrestle some more. At one point I almost had the needle in the vein when Fritsy jumped again.
Katy looked over at Wonderful.
Katy: “Wonderful, you REALLY need to re-tie the muzzle! His mouth is ALL THE WAY OPEN!”
Dr. W: “No, no, it’s ok, I have a really good hold on him, just get the sample.”
We all get back to concentrating on getting the blood sample while the very large husky carries on like a big baby.
Several minutes went by when we heard, “CAN SOMEONE PLEASE GET ME A PAPER TOWEL OR SOMETHING?!!!”
The three of us looked up to see blood streaming all over Wonderful’s left hand that is being pressed up to the side of his head. After a moment’s pause, we all jump up to grab the paper towels.
Me, Katy, Beth: “What happened?!!!”
Dr. W: “He was trying to bite my hat and I moved my head and he latched onto my ear. Don’t worry about it, I’ve got him, just get the sample!”
This simple bleeding job wasn’t going as planned AT ALL!
After several more moments of wrestling, we all called it quits. If Fritsy was that feisty, he wasn’t hypoglycemic. His treatment was working. He could go home.
Katy walked out to speak to the owner’s son with Fritsy in tow.
Son: Oh Fritsy are you ok?
Katy: He’s fine, which is more than we can say for the doctor…
Son: You’re kidding, right?!!
Katy: Um, no.
Dr. Wonderful wanders out at that point with a towel on his ear.
Son: Is that all Fritsy’s blood?
Dr. W: Uh, no, it’s all mine…don’t worry about it, and PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE don’t say anything about this to your father! It was no big deal, it happens, the dog is fine.
Dr. W: It’s ok, don’t worry about it.
Son: I want to see it.
Dr. W: No, I don’t think you really do.
Son: No, I really need to see how bad it is.
Dr. W shows him the front and back of his ear.
Son: Ooh, I think I’m going to be sick…
Fritsy and the son leave, and we try to clean up the ear. My cell phone rings.
D: Can you bring me home something to eat?
Me: Well, it’s gonna take a while because a dog just tried to rip your dad’s ear off.
D: No! (disbelief – we lie a lot)
Me: Yes! Really!
Several hours and between the front and the back of his ear 26 stitches later we head home so Dr. W can get out of his very bloody shirt.
Dr. W: And I really liked this shirt!
Me: Don’t worry, I’ll soak it and get it all cleaned up for you. Besides, you always have a sweater on so as long as the collar is clean, no one will ever know.
Dr. W’s ear healed just fine. Other than some strange tingling in the cold the rest of the winter, it didn’t bother him at all.
I got the shirt clean enough to wear without a sweater!
The daughter finally got something to eat.
As usual, Dr. W provided great entertainment to his friends, family, and colleagues, as least as long as his ear looked nasty.
Fritsy continues to be large and spoiled but doesn’t carry a grudge. He no longer has any issues with low blood sugar since his owner started feeding him twice a day.
I have absolutely no idea how we’re going to beat this for a romantic Valentine’s Day. But at least it’s on a Sunday this year, and the clinic will be closed…