The happiest of reunions

…is when you see your dog for the first time after she’s been at the hospital for 36 hours!

I took Casper to the emergency clinic on Sunday morning after she’d been up all night vomiting and squatting in the yard. It seemed a little strange to me that she walked in on her own and yet needed to be on IV antibiotics and fluids for so long, with lots of bloodwork, urinalysis and culture, ultrasound, and radiography. I felt badly that she was so sick but I wasn’t even sure she needed a vet yet (and I should have taken her sooner!). After 24 hours her fever was gone and she was able to keep food down, so she was released to me that night with four medications, fluids to dispense at home, and a bunch of special food.

Besides a raging UTI, poor Casper is in chronic kidney failure; her kidneys have less than 25% functionality left. If we can maintain her fluids and diet and prevent UTIs, she may have months or years left. But we really don’t know.


The time she was gone was very hard for me, especially going to work. Of course she’s acting totally normal at home now. She doesn’t seem sick at all. In fact, eight hours after she got home, she found two-day-old frozen puke in the yard–her dinner that didn’t stay down before she went to the doggy hospital. She ate it. That’s the Casper I know.

I’m just beginning to learn about her renal failure care, and we have lots of checkups in our future. It’s good to have her home, shaved belly and all.

A ‘review’ of sorts on Indianapolis Veterinary Emergency Clinic, near I-465 and Emerson Ave. on the southeast side: They were very thorough and the doctors seem very competent. I didn’t think my initial technician visit was very clear (she took a brief history and took Casper away and apparently the vet did bloodwork and urinalysis on her without me even seeing the her first, waiting forever for an update; I expected to talk about what diagnostics would be performed or what her initial exam revealed before getting too far, but the work done was appropriate). There is a lot of bureaucracy around phone calls and contacts and visiting hours and discharge appointments, but it seems important given the number of patients they are managing. Fortunately they gave me a handout about what to expect in contacting them and hearing from them, and my questions were always answered… I just got worried more than once when I didn’t get update phone calls when I expected them. They communicated well with my personal vet (who did take initiative to call them when I talked to her) and provided me with copies of Casper’s diagnosis and treatment and test results, and sent copies to my personal vet as well. Overall it was VERY expensive but I feel we received excellent care. I just wish all pet owners could afford to do this detailed work. It’s comforting to know they are also a specialty/referral clinic so ultrasound interpretation and technology were advanced.

BTW, I’ve also had good experiences up at Circle City if you are near the NW side, though I’ve only been there with rabbits. For small animals, this is the ONLY emergency place in town. My experience with their specialty service was also good (also with a rabbit, a coronary ultrasound, I think).

5 thoughts on “The happiest of reunions

  1. Poor Casper! Abbs had a bad UTI recently. She sends her sympathies and 3 bushels of fluff. šŸ™‚

    I had to take Abby to the emergency vet in Castleton on Bash a few years ago. They were nice but I was appalled at the cost. APPALLED.

  2. Poor baby. Animals are funny. Their natural instinct is to suppress all signs of illness because in the wild such evidence of weakness would get them eaten. Cats are worse for this than dogs because they’re not quite as domesticated yet. It doesn’t serve them well these days though because we never know they’re ill until it’s almost too late. I hope Casper feels better and is back to her old self soon and for a long time to come.

  3. XUP, I think about this all the time with our rabbits, since prey animals REALLY hide illness. The best way to keep on top of it is to know them really well and react to anything that seems off. I suppose it applies just as well to dogs and other animals! Though dogs seem to have evolved with humans to their advantage, and you’d think the ones who could communicate their illness to their ppl would live longer as a result. I laugh thinking of a big shy white dog trying to make it on her own in the wild. She’s practically useless making it on her own around the house! šŸ™‚

    Myms–I’ve been to that place on Bash too, but just for referral at the opthalmologist. They did a good job with bunny eyes there.

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