Fair warning, a bit of a rant a head.
My first dog, a just about 6-month GSD seems to having the world luck when it comes to heath.
The first week I got her I made the mistake of instantly feeding her raw beef, raw chicken, and milk (vs. her previous diet of specially-made, raw puppy food), sure enough, that resulted in horrible diarrhea stuggles for the next week, until I got her back on the food she was having before I got her.
By three months I took her to the local daycare and they requested she get bordetella vaccine, so I got her vaccinated. Sure enough, a couple weeks (or was it days?) later she gets the very thing she was vaccinated against: kennel cough. That fun stuff lasted a couple weeks.
Shortly after I noticed a limp in the hind left leg
. Thought it must have been a sprain and it would go away, then thought it did, but no, I started seeing it again in a couple weeks. Went to the vet and he also thought it was a soft tissue injury and prescribed anti-inflammatory meds and two weeks of no serious exercise. A month later and there's no change. Eventually got her X-Rayed
, which proved that the vet I was going to was not nearly as good as I thought he was.
In the midst of all this, she went through a phase of horribly bad breath
. And she started becoming a picky eater
, which, added with my inexperience with dogs and desire to please led to me giving in and feeding her different food, and sure enough, another week of diarrhea all over the apartment.
And then I notice this wart-looking thing on her lip
Now we're at about 5.5-6 months of age, and yesterday I picked her up from Day Care only to hear that she's got a very red, swollen eye and what's likely "cherry eye." Called a few vets, visited an emergency, and found out she'd need surgery to correct this ASAP.
Today I called a different vet (one who happened to be my landlord a few years back) and got an appointment at 2:30 - the lady on the phone mentioned that they likely wouldn't be able to do any surgery until Friday; called me back an hour later with news of an opening in 30 minutes, so I rushed her to the clinic. Met my vet, discussed options, decided to the cherry eye surgery, combine it with a spay (OVE), removal of the wart on the lip, and another X-ray, as there is a specialist at this clinic.
Left the pup, got a call a few hours later that she's under anaesthesia, but after inspecting her mouth, they noticed that her lower canine tooth is digging into the upper gum over a length of about a whole centimetre, and they'll need to do a gingivectomy.
Got a call after all was said and done: spay went great, had some troubles with the cherry eye operation, but worked it out; had some troubles with the gingivectomy, did an additional dental x ray, seems to have worked out in the end, but will only know for sure in a month or so; the single wart on the lip (which was removed) turned out to be accompanied by twenty or so additional warts in her mouth - vet says these will go away over time as her immune system deals with them.
The X-rays of her hips showed the same thing as the previous set - right hind leg isn't ideal, but not necessarily hip dysplasia. Interestingly, her limp is on her left leg.
Now for the next 10 days I can't give her any exercise (no more than three or four five-minute walks per day), and every twelve hours I have to give her two painkillers (25mg and 50mg, as they didn't have 75mg pills), five minute cold compress on her eye, ointment into the same eye, and then rinse out her problematic tooth area with some medicine. And she's to wear a cone the whole time, 24/7.
Today cost me just over $1400, and I'd say I'm at around $2000 of vet visits and medicine since getting the pup in late September (first four months of having the pup). I'm seriously regretting not getting pet insurance from the get-go (always had cats and never had any
issues with them), and will be looking into it ASAP.
Anyone else have this much trouble with a pup? This can't be "normal," can it?
Can't help but think that a lot of the troubles are related to spending a lot of time around other dogs at the daycare, sharing water with them, etc. I've still got two days left on my pre-paid "card," but I don't think I'll ever be taking my pup there again.
On a side note, as a single, 24 year old guy with a kitten, pup, a full-time job, and an attempt to have some resemblance of a social life, I think I'm beginning to go insane.