Monday, March 12, 2012

Our Hope Chest

This has been a bizarre week here on the farm.

First was the botched batch of eggs in the incubator. The second and much more serious incident was of our 12 year old Chocolate Lab, Callebaut, ingesting 27 pills prescribed to his "sister" India. India is epileptic and requires phenobarbital to keep her from having seizures. At first we guessed at how many pills he had eaten at 10. It wasn't until later that evening that I did the actual math and discovered how many and, therefore, how serious this was.

He ate the pills on Friday and as of today, he is still at the pet hospital.  For the first 20 hours he was not "arousable". By Saturday morning he progressed to opening his eyes when talked to. I have been to visit him each day. On the first visit could barely lift his head, but he did...and he tried his best to lick me.  He nuzzled me, licked my cheek and then stuffed his muzzle in my ear to give it a lick. I laid down with him, sang to him, napped with him, and have been able to hand feed him.

Yesterday he was much more alert and really wanting to greet me but ended up just throwing his block head back and whacking me in the face, so I maneuvered out of bonking zone. I was showered with licks and slobber and then the tail was wagging non-stop! It was very reassuring to see his progress.

Today he was actually up on his front "elbows" in the Sphinx position. Once I saw him he tried to get up to greet me but couldn't quite do it. I got to feed him again (voracious appetite) and he was able to easily drink water, too. A couple of times he tried to get up but just couldn't. Between losing muscle strength in already aged legs and still having the drugs in his system, it is just going to take some time. The nurses were going to work with him today to see if they could get him up on his feet and build up some endurance.  

We are hoping we can bring him home today, but this will be only if he can stand on his own and go to the bathroom without the assistance of a nurse. I love my baby boy...but I do draw the line!

  This weekend has been so rough and joy-robbing.. We need something that offers promise of life.

This is one of the reasons for starting a batch of eggs/chicks. I have dubbed our incubator,  "The Hope Chest" because we need to feel hopeful, to be filled with dreams of healthy baby chicks and the promise of  future egg-laying hens. After all of the angst of our dog's life threatening accident, we need a little hope.

With luck we will have chicks by Easter, and Callebaut home tonight!! Thanks to everyone for their kind wishes and prayers.

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