Poor Stinkman

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We came home from Wisconsin on Wednesday night, and were greeted by the smell of poop in the house. One of the dogs had diarrhea, we just didn't know who. So, we walked all of the dogs, and everything looked and seemed fine. By some odd stroke of luck, we noticed that Big Boy had a large lump on the inside of his left rear ankle. It looked painful, so we decided to schedule a vet visit for him as soon as possible.

Amy was able to get him in to the Vet on Thursday afternoon (the next day), and while Big Boy was at the Vet's office, he pooped uncontrollably, and started to vomit. The Vet gave him some anti-nausea medicines and some antibiotics for the lump.

As soon as Big returned home, we noticed that he didn't seem quite right. He wasn't interested in eating, he was dry heaving, and he just moped around. After a few hours, he started to cough bloody saliva, and refused to sit or lay down - he just stood around, panting and looking miserable.

We tried to get him to calm down; we tried relaxing him, massaging him, and so on. He'd lay down, but you could tell he wasn't comfortable. I massaged his paws, which were really tense. Amy tried to sleep next to him for a while, but he wasn't able to go to sleep.

So, finally at around midnight, we took him to the emergency vet clinic in Springdale, where they did some x-rays and preliminary exam work. We were concerned that he might be bloating - we had a foster dog that bloated on us and it was horrible, so we wanted to make certain Big wasn't suffering the same fate.

The good news was that he wasn't bloating, but the Vet at the emergency clinic said Big was, "Amazingly unremarkable" - meaning that there wasn't a clear issue to attempt to fix or contend with. So, they gave him some more medicine for his nausea and they sent us home. We were supposed to watch him throughout the night and get him to our normal Vet in the morning. Several hundred dollars lighter, we left the Vet and drove home.

Big did well throughout the night - he actually rested a bit, and we got to sleep a little. Amy took him to our Vet immediately this morning, and they kept him all day. They ran a gamut of tests, and everything turned up negative. No issues that they could "work on." So, that's frustrating. The 'ole Stinkman is obviously not feeling well, but we don't know what's really wrong with him. He is old... and stinky... but there's no real cure for either of those ailments.

So, I guess we wait for him to start feeling better. I also can't say enough good things about our Vet - he cut us one heck of a deal for Big's day long visit and tests. He's an absolute saint, and we need to do something friendly/nice for him and the clinic.

As you can well imagine, Nurse Regis is currently tending to Big Boy. As I was trying to take pictures of Big, I felt something nipping gently at my arm - as if to say, "Why don't you leave him alone?" Here's what the picture looks like when I zoom out a bit:

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There's Nurse Regis, tending to his patient and keeping me at a safe distance. He's such a good boy - I've never seen any dog care so much about the well being of others - no matter who it is. He takes care of sick kittens, sick people, and now the Stinkman.

So, keep Big in your thoughts. We're glad that his illness isn't anything "remarkable," but at his age, anything can happen.

And finally, as I was turning to walk into the office - I noticed Riley was lying on top of Amy... I just thought this was a funny picture - Amy's napping (we slept about 2 hours last night), and Riley is "holding down" the blanket I guess.

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