Day 6 — An Emergency Metro Update

Metro Being Bottle Fed at Home Earlier this Week

Metro Being Bottle Fed at Home Earlier this Week

Metro Has Aspirated Milk at the Hospital…

They tube fed him and gave him the bottle which he sucked on some. They put him back in his cage and the next time they checked him,  at about 4 pm, they saw milk coming from his nose and mouth. They x-rayed and confirmed that there is fluid in his lungs … they are giving him oxygen, and he’s fighting still. The doctor said that there’s nothing they can do beyond the oxygen, giving him a prophylactic antibiotic, and hoping. It doesn’t look good, but there’s still a chance, apparently.

We know most breeders keep puppies like this at home and do the tube feeding, etc. We just didn’t feel experienced enough, especially since we hadn’t been shown how/practiced. We didn’t know if we could really feed him every hour as the hospital said he needed. And we also worried about keeping him warm.  And, the local vets said us trying to tube feed him was dangerous and they recommended against it. Basically, this is our third litter in 25 years and we just didn’t prepare ourselves well enough for something that is common, but not in our experience.

Geoffrey and I have talked. We felt that having him in the hospital stretched our budget but it was giving him the best care.  That has been worth it.

From a psychological perspective, for our future litters and for us, having Metro in the hospital was a good thing. If the outcome is not good, we know that he failed even though he had the best medical care.  If the outcome was not good after we kept him at home, we would blame ourselves. We also know that even with the professional medical care, some puppies can aspirate… aspiration is not necessarily caused by us making a mistake.

We know breeders understand that  some puppies don’t make it and there is nothing you can do. We intellectually knew that ourselves. But, our experience with Metro makes it real. And, we didn’t slip up and keep him from succeeding.

The next litter, we will be prepared for tube feeding. We will ask for instructions from our reproduction vet. We will have enough supplies lined up, and we will also do a better job of clearing our calendars so that the lack of sleep doesn’t impact our work life.

Geoffrey is on his way home from having visited Metro at the hospital. Geoffrey brought him a t-shirt with the smells of his sister and mother on it. Geoff held Metro and left him on top of the t-shirt.  Geoffrey says Metro is weak, but the doctors believe that he is breathing better than he was a bit ago. The doctors plan to back off the amount of food they were giving him per meal; they suspect he overate and regurgitated some which got into his lungs.

There’s still a chance.

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4 Responses to Day 6 — An Emergency Metro Update

  1. Patty Bonnell says:

    You’ve done everything you can. I am happy that you know this and are together in this process. Hoping that it all works out for you and for Metro.

  2. Patty Ronney says:

    Let’s keep our fingers crossed. You made a wise choice so you don’t blame yourselves. Even if you had been better prepared, it would have been a wise choice. Take care of each other and the pack.

  3. Carrie Steer-Salazar says:

    None of this is your fault, Galen and Geoff! Do NOT beat yourself up. You love those doggies and you are doing everything possible. Nature is a strong determinate.

    • Galen says:

      Thank you.

      We are very, very, very lucky to have been able to give Metro first-rate professional medical support. We intellectually knew that puppies often fail to thrive, but now we feel it.

      We feel good about the chance we gave him. We wish he would have been able to latch on to life. But, we are not doubting ourselves or the doctors or the other dogs or anyone.

      Sigh.

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