Monday, March 2, 2020

The Worst Thief

My puppy Kaia is the WORST thief.  Stealing things that I have handled has been her favorite game since the day I brought her home and it is the one thing I have not been able to teach her not to do because she loves doing it so much.  I can't decide if she is a bad thief because she is incorrigible about it or because she also brings her booty straight to me to show off.  She has taught me a whole new level of "puppy-proofing" and I seldom mess up anymore.

I've been adjusting to a radical job change, lots of human contact and an awful bout of pneumonia.  I came home from work Friday night, sick, tired, distracted and wanting nothing more than to feed the donkeys and go to bed.  I changed out of my work clothes, took my inhaler out of the pocket of my scrubs and set it on the bathroom counter.  Then I made the fateful mistake of walking away and forgetting to pick it up again.  A few minutes later, I heard a clatter and a whoosh and knew immediately that I had screwed up bad and the thief had struck again. 

I confess, I was more annoyed than alarmed at first that Kaia had just wrecked my new inhaler.  I wasn't thinking clearly and did not realize that dogs absorb albuterol directly through their mucus membranes.  When she punctured the canister, the entire contents dispensed straight into her mouth.

Within minutes, I noticed Kaia acting a bit odd and then she started throwing up.  I did a quick search about dogs and albuterol and realized we could be in big trouble so I called the Pet Poison Helpline

(Stop reading this now and make sure you have this number in your contacts list:(855) 764-7661).

They told me to hang up and start driving to the emergency vet clinic, which is an hour away.  The vet clinic still wanted me to open a case with the poison helpline, because their service includes unlimited consultation with their vets who have experience with toxicology and access to extensive databases of toxicology information that most clinics can't maintain on their own.

The risks with albuterol poisoning are cardiac arrest, extremely low blood potassium levels and hyperthermia.  Kaia spent the next 24 hours in the hospital. She got IV fluids, blood pressure checks every 15 minutes, an ECG and hourly blood checks to make sure her potassium level did not crash.  The most critical time frame is 24-48 hours after exposure. 

Fortunately, Kaia responded well to treatment and has made a full recovery.  She came home Saturday night and had a couple of quiet days and is now back to her usual ways, including being on the lookout for "treasure" to steal.  She is back to her endearing, quirky, thieving ways and I am trying to figure out how to convince her to abide by the law and pay for her vet bills.  I am also keeping my inhaler in the cupboard.






15 comments:

  1. How scary! SO glad she made a complete recovery; worrisome that she could steal something that could harm her again.

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  2. Oh my gosh, Kris, what a fright! I hope you are feeling better and Kaia is fine again.

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  3. Oh goodness! I would never think that a pup could puncture that ... but sure she could! What a frightening thing to happen.
    Happy she is doing well though.

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  4. Good Grief!!! No crisis like a crisis with our 'children' human or four legged.

    Do I see Connor cuddling/comforting with the Sprite?

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  5. I'm glad she is okay. I know that was a scary ordeal for you.

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  6. Holy cow. Glad she's okay. Thanks for the warning. Puppies...

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  7. GAAAA! So glad she is ok. Thank you so much for posting the Pet Poison Helpline phone number. It will definitely save precious minutes for someone.
    Hope you are feeling better too.

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  8. Oh how scary. I’m glad she’s ok.

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  9. Delrene from Carlsbad, CaMarch 3, 2020 at 7:21 PM

    What a terrible fix. You not feeling well and then all that went down with your pupster. . Glad you are both on the mend. Pneumonia. No joke. I had a bout for the first time in my life this past Dec.
    rest, rest. Easy to say, hard to do I know.

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  10. Sure glad she's okay. I thought maybe that incident would have taught her not to steal things.

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  11. Now that she is staying at my farm during the day with her buddy, Ian, Kaia is attempting to see if she can get eaten by the pigs! Ian is TRYING to teach her to have a greater sense of self-preservation, but it is not easy.

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  12. Glad to read this story had a happy ending. Bookmarked that ph. number as well. My brother has a german shepherd puppy with a similar habit, tv remotes..phones lol I've come to the conclusion that if do get another dog, it may have to be older and hopefully out of the puppy antics but those are not easy to find. Hope you're feeling better. m.k.

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  13. So glad it all ended well. Scary for sure! She is so cute..probably thinks it is her job:)

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