Sixteen days ago, I picked up a dog named Talulah from an owner who was no longer able to keep her. This little girl is a 9-year-old pug who has tons of spunk and spirit!
Picture #1: This is day 1 together. I picked her up and drove her back home. She was happy from the very beginning. She settled in really quickly and had a ball running around the house, playing in the yard, hanging with the people, etc. She even had an adventure soon after arriving, escaping from the yard and roaming the neighborhood for 30 minutes or so (see earlier blog).
She went to the vet on July 25th for an exam. She needed to have her teeth cleaned and some extractions. She also struggled to breath when she got too worked up or it was too hot. She was considered a good candidate for soft palate resection to help with her breathing. I dropped her off on the morning of July 28th and couldn’t have begun to understand what the next 4 days would be like!
She had her surgery and everything went as expected. She had her soft palate surgery, the teeth were taken care of, she did well under anesthesia and there were no problems. I picked her up that same evening. She did seem really tired but I assumed she was just very drugged from the surgery and medication.
By the next morning, she was refusing to eat or take her medication and she was very lifeless. I laid with her for a while. I tried to coax her to take her pain medicine but none of the usual tricks worked. At that point, I called the vet to see if I could bring her back for an inject-able version of the medication. They said yes and away we went. When we arrived, they felt it would be better to keep her for the day to administer medication and monitor her so I left her for the day. I received 2 updates that sounded positive but when the 3rd call came, it was clear she had taken a turn for the worse.
Talulah was headed to the emergency room with 2 veterinarians transporting her to the new location. I was caught off guard and rushed to meet them there. I knew it had to be serious but had no idea what we were in for. The emergency doctor that met with me informed me that Talulah had an abnormal amount of swelling post-surgery. She had so much swelling that her entire airway was obstructed and she was not able to breathe without being intubated. I had to quickly make the decision to euthanize her or allow them to give her a temporary tracheostomy. I had NEVER seen a dog with a tracheostomy tube sticking out of their neck. I consulted with Robin from the rescue and talked to every doctor who would talk to me. In the end we decided to give her a fighting shot.
Picture #2: This is her during my first visit with her post emergency surgery. She was laying on her side and you can see a little of the tube sticking out of her neck. It was clear there that she was breathing easier with the tube and seemed a thousand times more comfortable but we still had no idea if she would survive.
Picture #3: This picture was taken during our visit with her today! She had so much energy and her spunky, sassy attitude had returned. My husband went with me for this visit and it was great to see her so happy to see us and loving all the attention.
Tomorrow is the BIG DAY!!! She will meet with the surgeons to evaluate the swelling and see if she can survive without the tube. She can’t keep this tube forever so we need her to be able to breath on her own. Talulah has been a huge adventure from her first day here and in these 16 days we have experienced a journey I will never forget. I am just praying that tomorrow is a good day. Keep fighting Talulah!!! Never a dull moment at the Urban Pug Farm…