We spent a couple of hours last night with Leo at the emergency vet. Always a good time. Nothing to worry about, he'll be fine, but still, stressful.
On Friday night, Leo and Ata got into it briefly over something (not sure what). This never happens, so it was scary in and of itself, but what was scarier was that Leo fell and got a pretty gnarly, though small, puncture wound (I think from something on the dog crate he fell against, but honestly I'm not sure--Ata didn't bite him, though, it had to be from the fall). It looked pretty clean and not terrible, and wasn't bleeding much, so we just cleaned it up and bandaged it. However, by last evening it was clear that he was developing cellulitis in the leg below where he was cut, so off to the emergency vet we went.
Two plus hours later, we left with a newly cleaned and wrapped wound, a bottle of antibiotics, a $150 bill, and directions to follow up with our regular vet on Monday. So now we're checking and re-wrapping every 12 hours, trying to keep him from chewing on it, watching for infection, and administering antibiotics with the tried-and-true peanut butter method.
The thing is that the emergency vet hospital that is closest to us, where we spent much of our evening yesterday, is the same one to which Chance was rushed when he got bloat at the kennel. And I know Mark and I were both thinking about that as we waited with Leo. Chance dying was so terrible, and although we intellectually know that Leo is old and we can't expect to him to be happy and healthy and alive forever, it still turns us cold to imagine losing him like we did Chance. Because of that, the emergency vet's concern over Leo's heart murmur, which seems to be getting worse, was particularly troubling.
I know I've posted this here before, but I love this dog. Like I don't think I've ever loved another creature. He is just all good. Even when he misbehaves (which has been happening more lately, oddly), I can't get mad at him. I don't care how bad he smells (and y'all, he does not smell good), or how much his ridiculous vet care costs, or how gross he gets (nasty stuff stuck in his beard and worse). This is as close as I think I'll ever get to unconditional love. And any time he has to go to the vet, I'm filled with dread that this will be the visit where we find out what is going to kill him. Morbid, isn't it? But probably not surprising.
Anyway, it looks like this time he'll be fine. And I will once again remember to treasure every day we have with him.