Thursday, April 3, 2008

Why I don't like my job...

So I'm sitting here at my house on my lunch hour contemplating the morning I had. One word...tough. I felt the need to unwind a little through my little blog here. I could have a chat with my dog, but all he would do is wag his tail and perk up his ears.

[He does have some awesome ears by the way...]

I will add here that dogs are quite therapeutic. Back in Athens we used to take my old dog Savannah to a nursing home. The folks there loved her! She just sat there while they petted [that a word?] her for hours. Anyway, I will post a video on how dogs are helping autistic children. It's a pretty amazing story...

Sorry for the digression...

My first appointment of the day was a 2 year old Jack Russell Terrier that the owners said was crying a lot and they noticed a "bump" on his side. They also said that he went missing yesterday for a couple of hours. My physical examination revealed scabs on his ears, a nasty bruise behind his right front leg and this "bump," well I could reduce it. This means that whatever was poking out under his skin I could push back it.

When I finished my examination I talked to the owners, which was a mom and her child, and told them that I'm suspecting he got hit by a car and that he has a tear in his abdominal wall. We took some x-rays which showed a few broken ribs, proof of this abdominal wall tear and that he may have some fluid in his abdomen, which could be either blood or urine. Urine? Yes, a common finding in some blunt-force trauma to the abdomen is a ruptured bladder...not good.

I go over the results of the x-rays with the owners and tell them that their pet needs to have emergency surgery to fix the abdominal wall tear and to find out where this "fluid" is coming from. I gave them an estimate for what it would cost to fix their dog and their eyes widened. The mom at first said go ahead with the surgery, but then quickly changed her mind and turned to the kid and asked him, "What do you want to do? It's your dog." I felt awful for this kid. He was probably 12 years old and was left with the decision to try and save his dog or put him to sleep (aka euthanize him). He started crying so I left them to discuss it for a few minutes.

I went back into the room and the mom again turned to the kid and asked the same question, "So what do you want to do?" In between the tears he said, "I guess put him to sleep." I asked him if he was sure and he nodded his head. Then I discussed with both of them what happens during a euthanization and reassured him that his dog would not feel any pain.

The end went smoothly and pain free. The kid wept...I mean all-out weeping, and I too was fighting back the tears. I gave the kid a hug and even though I knew in my head that I could fix their dog, I told him that he made a very mature and humane choice.

It hurts because I could have fixed him but I didn't get the chance. The price to pay for the procedures was too much. I hate that. I HATE THAT!

Maybe the afternoon will be better?

Grace and peace.

1 comment:

ManUtd17 said...

Sucky morning. Hope the rest of the day was better.