Snapping at a Dog’s Tail

Earlier this week, our 5-year-old crazy labrador had a slight misfortune, which freaked out all members of the household.  She was viciously attacked by a spider – we think!

Throughout her 5 years, she has been very joyful and loving.  Well, she has an interesting relationship with other dogs, which is that she dislikes their company.  Nothing aggressively, just a simple dislike and she will bark when she sees another dog 3 miles away.

We always thought she was overly hyper, and our local vet did share that many brown labs seem to have a longer puppy phase, and might, therefore, appear more hyper.

I have not scientific evidence to show this is true or not, but our brown lab is certainly hyper most days.  She’s an odd dog, but we love her.

This is not a color thing!  A labs (white, black and brown) are hyper and extremely loving family pets.

She loves to chase the kids, chase toys, and has daily battles with the garden critters, as she attempts to assert her territory and will not allow many other furballs within a rather large radius.

Digressing here – sorry!

So, this week was no different, except it has been very humid lately and we all drink a lot more water when it is like this.

She swallowed her food within the usual 3-8 seconds, drank water, and laid down to relax after a hectic meal.

She then played chase and catch with the girls for a few minutes, before she was bored and attacked her kong rubber chew toy.

Suddenly she got up and emptied her stomach content on the wooden floor (thankfully not the carpet) and begged to go out.

Outside she did #1 two.  Then she did her thirty circles to find a good spot for #2 and squatted for what seemed minutes.  Clearly, something was not right, and being downwind confirmed that assessment.

She attempted to straighten up and only managed a few steps until she collapsed.  Her breathing was off, her heart slow and it seemed as if she had passed out.

After a few minutes of rest, she slowly stood up and walked very slowly into the house, where she laid down again.  Still breathing oddly and very weak.  Another 10 minutes passed and she started to scratch her snout and ears and had suddenly developed some hives and bumps all over.

It was clear she was not in a great place.  My wife drove her to the emergency vet.

As I did not participate in the vet visit, I can only share what I heard through text messages.  The dog was carried out of the car and rolled into the vet hospital on a stretcher.  And, with COVD-19 still in play, we could not go in with her so we are certain that increased her anxiety levels.

They gave her drip, steroids, Benadryl, and full blood work.  A decision was made to keep her overnight.  It is safe to say that we were fearing that she would not survive the night based on her appearance and a very weak state.

When the family was assembled this morning, and the poor dog still in the hospital, my wife briefed me on the health.

The doctor was confident this was a very severe allergic reaction.  It was not a snake bite, phew, but something else probably bit her arse while squatting.  Perhaps a spider bite, and we certainly have plenty of spiders in our outdoor fauna.

The vet called this morning saying she’s back to her usual happiness levels and eager to go home, still on some medication to treat the allergic reaction.

I wonder if this will change her desire to go the toilet in the tall grass again?  Do I need to cut the grass more often?  Will she turn into Spider-Dog?  Do we need to craft a customer for her?  When is the last time someone bit your arse?

All these questions and uncertainties.  It is not easy being a dog owner.

Pets are an extension to our families, and we often get very emotionally involved when they are injured or sick, just like when any of the human family members are sick.

Now I just have to worry about my dog turning into some web spraying furry superhero, attacking the local wildlife at night.

She’s a heart warrior just like her human dad!

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