Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Week From Absolute Heck

Oh, my goodness.  When it rains, it pours.  Poor Liesl has had a terrible week.  It actually started a few weeks ago, but got worse this past week.  Due to a warm winter and lack of rain, the fleas have been terrible this year.  They are impervious to Liesl's Frontline Plus.  It got bad enough this past weekend that I actually took all of the rugs out of the house and put them in the garage.  Then I washed everything that could possibly come into contact with Liesl and vacuumed everything.  She was not sleeping well from the itching last weekend.  At that point, I determined that she was having an allergic reaction.  I could not get a hold of the vet on the weekend, and the cardiologist was not in the office until Tuesday.  I did not know if I could give her anything due to the heart murmur.

Sunday night was just awful and Liesl and I ended up getting only  3 1/2 hours of sleep before I went to work on Monday.  My new supervisor started last week, so I really needed to be on my toes.  I was not at my best. :(  After waiting all day for my vet to call me back, I finally decided that no matter what, I was taking her to the emergency vet after work.  I figured the lack of sleep was bad for her heart and she desperately needed rest.

I took her to the emergency vet on Monday night.  The people there were so nice and they took Liesl into the room immediately.  I had her heart information from the cardiologist with me, and the super nice vet read it carefully before suggesting our plan.  He was so gentle with Liesl.  Bedside manner is pretty important to me and I was grateful to see how caring he was with her. He said that her little system was overwhelmed with histamine. He suggested that she take Benadryl every six hours for the next week to 14 days.  Then he said that the Frontline is not working.  He said that he is sure my house is clean, but he said that if I have ferals or wild animals going through my yard, (they do) then they are brushing up against the plants and Liesl picks them up when she goes by.  She is now switching to the pill, Comfortis, as a flea repellent.  As a last resort, we can do a one time dose of a very mild steroid.  Steroids are a big no no, for puppies with heart conditions.  The cardiologist approved the plan though and agreed that no sleep is pretty bad for the heart, too.

So Monday night we both slept six hours and I was grateful for it.  Tuesday night we slept eight hours, which was heavenly.  Last night, Wednesday, was awful and I think I got less sleep than Sunday night.  It started 20 minutes after I fell asleep and went on and off all night.  I was a wreck today and was beyond worried about what condition poor Liesl would be in when I got home.  She had been scratching and chewing so much she was giving herself bruises.  I planned on just taking her back to the emergency vet after work if she was not doing well.  

I was kind of scared to open my front door tonight.  However, I was greeted by a sparkly eyed, happy little dog who seems to be on the upswing.  She was not nearly as itchy.  We went for our walk and she even wanted to walk further than usual.  She came home and ate all of her dinner, then chased her ball, insisted on her belly rubs, had me hide her toy squirrel over and over again so that she could find it, and was just running  up the hall squeaking her ball.  I am so grateful.  I am just praying that she (and I) gets a good restful night of sleep.  I am overcome with joy, seeing her being her sassy schnauzer self.  

So hopefully we are on the mend.  


Vicky said...

As I mentioned before our dog had a heart murmur for many years and the poor boy was also allergic to fleas and was contently biting and scratching, our Vet did the once off mild steroid and it lasted all summer.
So every year the one shot fixed the problem and never caused any adverse effects.
Hugs to both of you :)

quiltluvr said...

Aww, poor Liesel and poor you! Fleas are nasty things. If you have fleas in your yard they can also hitch a ride on you into the house. I found that out after I saw a flea on our indoor cat. As much as you work in your yard that might be a possibility. I've read to brush off your clothes good with your hands before coming back inside.

Also after doing a good vacuuming, throw away the bag! If you suck up fleas they can get back out. I had a pest control guy tell me that. Be sure to vacuum good around your baseboards where they can hide too.

The more I read about fleas the creepier they were to me. I have squirrels, chipmunks and rabbits that I am sure contribute to our fleas.

Hope you can get it under control and Liesel can get some relief soon.