When I woke up on the morning to discover the kitchen floor was smeared with a lot of blood and some urine, I knew something wasn’t right. Skye was curled up in a corner, acting like she was about to get into the worst trouble of her life, but who could get upset with a dog that was obviously not the picture of perfect health.
I went online and read about how this could be a normal heat, I also read about a few infections and stuff that could cause this. We decided to play the wait and see game, we just didn’t have the money for an expensive trip to the vet and it broke our heart but really what choice did we have?
Things didn’t really get worse, but they didn’t get better either, so we decided to scrape together the money to consult a vet and see what they’re opinion was.
We got to the vet and went into the examination room, where we discovered that Skye’s bleeding had stopped, so the vet couldn’t actually see if it was pyometra because she needed to see if there was pus in the blood.
The vet stood there and told us that she’d done a google search and come up with three possible results, the above mentioned pyometra, a bladder infection or it could just be a really harsh heat that Skye was going through. She gave us a laundry list of things to watch for and when we told her we just couldn’t afford the $300 to perform tests right then, we left and began our vigil over Skye.
I’ll admit that I was more than a little peeved to discover that I’d just paid $100 to a person who had basically done the same thing as me, gone online to research what this could be, and come up with the exact same three conclusions as me. Really it was a useless visit.
Sadly one of the things on the laundry list, a discharge of pus from the vulva, was discovered and the diagnosis was narrowed down from the possible three to just one, pyometra. A diagnosis that comes with a minimum $2000 price tag for the surgery and hospital stay afterward.
I went online and searched for some financial help with this, I discovered a few charities that helped cover the costs of dog care, sadly it turned out that they’d only help if the immediate owner was disabled, which I am not, or if I was abused and battered by my husband and have left him to live in a battered woman’s shelter, which again I’m not.
I called different surgeries, I tried to garner some sympathy for our plight, but while folks on the other ends of the phone may have felt bad for me, nobody offered to allow us to do the surgery and make payments in installments, cash up front was all I heard.
It broke my heart, because if this had happened before Hubby had hurt his foot and had his take home pay cut by over $15,000 we wouldn’t have even had a problem. We’d have had that dog in for surgery faster than anybody can blink.
After much soul searching we decided that if we couldn’t afford the surgery for Skye, then we had to do something to end her suffering. We didn’t want to put her down, other than an infected womb she was a perfectly good dog. I spent most of my time from the time I got up to the moment my head hit the pillow crying over this. Even when I was in bed, I wasn’t sleeping but lamenting this whole situation.
Finally we decided that this had to end, and so instead of putting her down we called the Toronto Humane Society and see if they would take her and help her. We were told that if we wanted to sign Skye over to them we had to do it right away. Intakes are only done by appointment, and they only do them Monday to Thursday, 9-4 and it was Thursday at 3:30 when they finally told us they’d take her.
We knew we couldn’t keep Skye over the weekend, not like this. So we hurried her into the car, I said my good byes, Sean came home from school just as Hubby was getting set to leave and he got to go along with Hubby. Sadly Ceilidh’s bus doesn’t bring her home until after 4:00, so she never got to say good-bye. She left for school that morning having two dogs to love, worried to death over one of them and came home to one dog and a broken heart for not being able to say good-bye.
Hubby took Skye to the THS shelter and was told repeatedly that once he signed Skye over to them, he’d never have a chance to get her back again. It was heartbreaking and Hubby said it was one of the hardest things he’d ever done, walk away from that place with the sounds of Skye’s howls following him out.
Misery is our family’s companion from that moment on, no matter what we did, missing Skye tainted everything.
So, when the phone rang on Saturday and it was THS asking us if we’d like to have Skye back, well I know I started to sob and act like a complete fool, but suddenly, for the first time in a very long time I had a little light at the end of the tunnel. After a couple of years of getting kicked around by life, suddenly we were going to get a break.
The arraignments were made, and on Sunday morning Hubby, myself and Ceilidh all climbed into the car and with much jubilation we went and brought our pup home.
They told us that Skye’s surgery cost $4000 in all, and that they’d appreciate if we’d give them a couple of donations when we’re able to, which we promised we’d gladly do.
They performed the surgery for pyometra, removed a tooth, a cyst on the edge of her eye and cut all of her nails. She looked wonderful, very skinny but she was so happy to see us.
One of the ladies at the shelter told us that while there Skye had been miserable and was actually failing to thrive, she’d refused food and drink and had been super stressed. There was a worry that she may not recover because she was so stressed out, and while I was very sad to hear about her suffering while we were parted, I was also secretly happy because it was the only reason that THS gave her back to us.
They gave us a large supply of antibiotics for the infection, which she took each and every pill happily, as long as it was stuffed inside a slice of bread.
Mal became very jealous over Skye’s twice daily helpings of medicated bread, so in turn he was happy because he started to get a slice of bread twice daily too. And anything that leads to Mal getting more food makes him love it all the more.
A few weeks have passed since Skye’s surgery, she has healed nicely and is once again prancing about the house, attempting to ignore Mal and when that proves impossible she grabs him by the leg and drags him around the house. She is once again gracefully leaping up the deck stairs in a single bound, and wiping out in a true Skye fashion each and every time.
We have our Princess back, so all is well again.