Ally, Ally… One sick little puppy! Part 1

The lead up

Life gets crazy. I intend to do so much in the little time I have throughout my day and things get away from me. I finally get a visa that allows me to work, only to find out I need to go to school in order to work in the field I was in before moving to Australia (my education and experience from New York was not recognized here), so I did… and the blog gets pushed into the back of my mind with a million other things and on the bottom of the to do list where getting to it looks dismal.

Until today. My normally funny posts, which I love writing, have been replaced (hopefully temporarily) with a series that’s ongoing and difficult to write. Trying to write factoids and not a novel, is always a challenge that I usually fail (look a funny!… or not, depending on if your reading this willingly). I will do my best to keep everything up to date for those interested in this unusual journey we find ourselves on.


First picture as a couple. Mykalyn named Allymare after her character in a novel she has been writing and will someday release.


Cuddle time with a very tired mommy

So in my last post, I barely introduced my Allymare.. puppy extraordinaire as a new love in my life. I am one of those people who irrationally (some have told me) fall in love with my animals to the point where it’s hard to distinguish much difference between them and the people I love. I have been on the I-want-another-baby-kick, and transferring that need onto Allymare, I know that.

From the first second, I knew I was screwed.. she is everything I didn’t want in a dog.. She is big.. Black (mostly)… She looks scary to everyone else. But she has those eyes which melt your soul. Like I said.. screwed! I wanted another Papillion.. little, cute, always puppy-sized and can be carried everywhere and the food bill would be non-existent (I had one when I lived in New York.. I love you Lizzy! RIP). You know a girl’s dog. Hahaha

Growing up, she was nearly perfect.. no accidents.. barks when she wants in or out. Crate trained at night, right in our master with us, no table food but the occasional carrot or zucchini slice, occasionally getting some broth to sweeten the deal. Obsessed with the ball, loves car rides and gramma’s farm and the really big dog’s there (the cows). She loves all things water…. The pool, lakes, rivers and beaches, so it is a good thing she inherited her mom’s webbed feet. Ally has a best friend named Aurora which we met in puppy school and she loves playing with the crickets in the yard, until she confusingly can’t get them to play because she accidentally killed it. She loves everything and everyone.. perfect.

I only say nearly perfect, because she can be stubborn as hell. If you are not giving her what she wants, she can give you the cold shoulder better than anyone I have ever met. And she sulks.. and makes sure you know it. The love affair she has with Matthew is like no other. I am pretty sure she feels like she is his spouse and I am just that lady who takes care of everything.

On a lovely day in early October of 2014, she had a seizure. We were home and thought she was choking. She came running in to us from outside, fell to the floor and stopped breathing. She was making funny noses and convulsing. We managed to get her to the vets and they ran tests and gave us the diagnosis (which until 6 months ago I was still in denial about). They said “We will watch and see if she has another one. Some dogs only have one and that’s it. Others will have one or 2 a year and act like it’s nothing at all”. So we did…2 months later, nothing… 6 months, nothing.. 9 months, nothing.. they must be crazy.. My dog choked on something..

In late September of this year, she had another and I had to face the truth that the first one was really a seizure. The regular vet said if they are that far apart, they would only go into more watch and wait. They wouldn’t treat it unless they were very regular and frequent, as the medication could cause damage to things like the liver after prolonged use. Then a week later, another one. So back to the doctor and they recommend just that.. on the medication we went. I researched it all, as I always do and was not happy about it. But what do I know, I am not a medical professional. So now Ally was on Phenobarbitone.

The first 2 weeks was quite scary. She was acting drunk and bumping into stuff. Stiff joints and groggy. She knew she was not right so she would always be right with someone. We headed to the vet a couple more times and they said although scary, everything was quite normal because it takes time to work into the system. I’m not feeling great about this as it is.. Now I like it even less. But then as it worked in she slowly shifted back to normal, and I was beginning to feel more at ease with the decision. It only lasted until Thanksgiving though before weird stuff started happening.

First week of December – She started doing the weird, groggy, drunk walk and having trouble getting in the car (it’s a minivan so she needs to jump up to get into it). The medication needs to be given consistently every 12 hours, so we blamed ourselves because the administration of her medication was bouncing a bit from 10 hours apart to 15 hours (7:30am and 7:30pm is not always easy when your children have activities before the end of the year causing you to not always be home at that exact time).


I’m not feeling so well mom!

Then went her appetite, which we also justified. She used to have moments where she just was not hungry. We joke that she might be part Papillion (They are a very sensitive little breed that are very picky eaters, usually). It was never a bad thing though. Seeing her parents were Golden Retriever and Australian Kelpie (a working farm dog breed that is used to running from sun-up to sun-down to help control livestock), its odd she wouldn’t eat everything in sight. How cool it is to have a dog that eats when she is hungry and doesn’t over indulge. She always ate well, just not gluttonous. It changed when we got the cat. The parental genetics kicked in when she thought the cat might steal her food. So we now needed to be careful not to over feed her. That’s been the norm for the past year. So when she skipped meals or started eating later, we figured she reverted to pre-cat times.

Second Week of December – We however could not justify the puddle on the floor. That was when we booked the appointment, which was 2 days from the call. Then the next day, our bed was wet, while she was still laying in it. She was soaked as well. My alarm bells went from worried to frantic.

Wednesday, December 9th – So off to the regular vet a day early to find out she had a serious temperature. The average Temp for a dog is around 38.5c (101.3f) and hers was 40.3c (104.5f). hey said they get nervous at anything over 39.5c (103.1f). They ran a blood test and a urine analysis and gave her an injection of antibiotics to help reduce the temperature. They also sent us home with a puppy version of electrolyte booster (like the pedialyte you give to kids when they are sick).

Thursday, December 10th – Back to our regular vet to see about her temperature, get another check-up and see what’s going on with her blood test. They ran cultures on both blood and urine which would not be ready until Monday, likely. The blood tests revealed she was completely missing white blood cells in her blood and that her red blood cells were much lower than normal. The doctor looked at a slide of Ally’s blood and could not find even one white blood cell! So where the hell are they?

Ally’s temperature was down and we were booked in for another check the next day and sent home with the antibiotic seeing its doing something to ease whatever this is. Plus with no white blood cells, she needed to have the antibiotic to help fight off anything she could potentially contract. Hopefully they could come up with a reason this is happening over night.

Mind you, every time I am with a doctor, I bring up her anti-seizure medication. I have read up on everything I could find, not knowing what is accurate and what’s not. I get the same answer every time.. It’s highly unlikely so we need to rule the more likely things out first. She is still eating, just not alot and antibiotic needs time to work through the system. If she is no better tomorrow, then more tests will occur to start trying to find a source.


Cuddling with the couch pillows makes me feel better.

Part 2 should be released in the next day or 2.




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