Wednesday, January 25, 2012

UPDATED: Anatomy Lesson of Terror

Update: As of noon today he's home!

To be clear at the beginning, this is not a Treats for Everyone post.

Yesterday our beloved Bucephalus was badly injured in a...kerfuffle in the park. After a very long day of waiting yesterday the word is that he will recover, albeit slowly. Since I wasn't able to get so listy yesterday here's a few of the things we learned.

The boy scouts teach you to put pressure on a wound. They do not clearly articulate how much pressure is required to stop a pumping chest wound.

Related to the above: Kayaking turns out to be an excellent muscle builder for putting pressure on a terrible wound. While we can definitively recommend kayaking we cannot so much recommend the other.

Our neighborhood is fabulous. From friends to strangers people come through in an emergency with a swiftness and commitment that I admire enormously.

Parents who value their ability to help save a dog's life above the question of how they will present the situation to their kids are golden. Though it may sound hyperbolic I believe that those parents are raising stronger, braver, smarter citizens who will be valuable contributors to their community in the long run.

Related to the above: Kids bring a much-needed levity to horrible situations. "You know what's good about this? I've been having a lot of trouble with my creative writing. Now I've got something to write about!"

Related to that: A kid who is interested in sharks, even a young kid, will have a basic understanding of the principles of a tourniquet.

The crash after a rush of adrenaline will make you feel pukey.

We live near one of the rockingest emergency veterinary clinics I've ever been to and, sadly, I've been to a few.

Traffic on Atlantic in rush hour sucks donkey dick.

Medical dramas and war movies are surprisingly realistic in their portrayal of the horrifying, blood-pumping-out-of-the-body emergencies. There is really that much blood and it stains your hands and your clothes and it smells in a way that makes your cats' noses perk up.

Related to the above: "Cold water and swift action" is a good motto for both blood stains and kayaking. Maybe a lot of other things, too.

The biggest, and perhaps most joyful, lesson learned yesterday is that a dog's body will find a work around if the jugular vein is severed. (Not so for the carotid artery, just the jugular vein.) That body will be bruised and swollen and will take time and effort to heal but with care it will make the necessary adjustments. Obviously that's not a course of action one wants to endorse but it's good to know that, in a pinch, your dog can spare the thing.

While, I repeat, it's not a Treats for Everyone post (thank fucking everything I can think of) I wouldn't call you crazy if you gave your pets an extra snuggle, walk, or juicy t-bone.


  1. What the Hell did he do?!?! little fuckers.

  2. It gave you an amazing story, but I bet you'd rather have been without this particular one. Poor thing...hope he's healing!

  3. We haven't had word yet today but in this case I think that no news is good news and we'll hear when he's going to be released.

  4. Anonymous12:18 PM

    wow, glad he's home!! must have been some kerfluffle, and scary as shit. adrenaline crashes suck too. beasties getting extra loving today for sure.

  5. yikes.

    things like this are why i'm skeered of dog parks, assuming this was a fight 'twixt two dogs. and i guess it's something to be aware of once we get our dog.

    glad he's home.

  6. Kizz, thanks for being one of those amazing neighbor-friends yesterday. Bucephalus would like me to mention that he's hungry. (Isn't that a good sign!?) He's on a short-walks program, which is fine for now. We're trying to picture what that will be like when the morphine and sedation and trauma and shock are all gone, and he's feeling terrific and *still* on short walks... And Laura - even normal dog-park stuff is pretty rare, and this was extra-rare and I bet that doesn't make you feel much better. (But I hope it does.) Indeed, extra snuggles & t-bones, all around!

  7. Damn, that sounds awful. Glad all worked out okay and that he's home.

  8. Sara - thanks for the input. i'm kindof terrified of most dogs as it is (which is why we're getting a puppy). dog parks especially scare me.