This sweet, senior Chihuahua mix came to us from our friends at Responsible Pet Care in Maine, who had earlier sent us both blind Honey and blind-and-deaf Stella the pug. They had taken in Angel after her owner moved and said she couldn’t take Angel along (but somehow was able to take the family’s other 2 dogs and 3 cats!). Although she’s not disabled, she is 14 with some health issues, so we bent the rules a little bit and were happy to welcome Angel to the farm.
For a gal who lived with just one person for her entire life, she adjusted remarkably well to a house full of other dogs. She’s a funny little thing, with lots of character. Despite having luxated patellas in both rear legs, she gets so excited about meal time she jumps up and down, raising her front legs off the ground, bouncing around until we put her food bowl in front of her.
We had taken her to our veterinary dentist at BEVS in Burlington several weeks ago because her mouth is a mess — she hasn’t received dental care in many years — but unfortunately an emergency came in that day and the dentist wasn’t able to do any procedures on her, just a consultation. So that’s being rescheduled. While she was there, though, the BEVS surgeon was able to look at her orthopedic issues, and the internal medicine specialist at BEVS also did an abdominal ultrasound, which showed no significant changes in her organs. The shelter had just done a full blood panel on Angel the month before she arrived, and everything was normal.
But late last week Angel started throwing up overnight … not a lot, but enough to be a concern. At the same time, she began leaving food behind at meal time, something she had never done. She was always one of those “lick the bowl clean” kind of dogs. I took her to Peak’s urgent care clinic in Burlington on Friday, where we found her liver values were all very elevated. The rest of her blood work was fine, but the liver was showing a lot of red flags. The urgent care veterinarian put Angel on an anti-nausea medication for the short-term, but also recommended a follow-up with an internal medicine specialist.
I took Angel back to Burlington on Tuesday this week for that consultation with the BEVS internist. A new ultrasound showed her liver hadn’t changed since we did the earlier one, and consequently the internist suspected an infection of some sort. (We tested for lepto and it was negative.) Angel is now on antibiotics and liver support meds. She hasn’t thrown up since last Friday, though she still isn’t finishing her meals 100%. We’re going to recheck her blood work in a few weeks. If she deteriorates in the meantime, of course we will take her right back to BEVS. But she is still jumping up and down for breakfast and dinner, and that’s a good sign!
She sleeps most of the time. In fact she slept right through everything at Peak on Friday. The veterinary nurse and I joked that maybe we should be testing her for narcolepsy. I took a quick video clip of her snoring away on the exam table … for some reason I can’t embed the video in this post, but if you click on this link it should bring it up in a new tab (turn your volume up to appreciate it):
That’s our new girl!