You can take the GRITS out of Florida, but you can't take Florida out of the GRITS!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

My Worst Caching Experience Ever!

Yesterday, Sam and I decided to go for a cache near the Deering Estate, off Old Cutler Road. We thought we'd bring Indy and get her out of the house and in some fresh air for a while. it was in the evening...around 5:30 or so, when we got there. We had to phone a friend for help on stage 1 because my gps had us all over the place.

Stage 2 was further down the road at this Chinese Bridge that Charles Deering had built for reasons I don't know (there's no water under the bridge!). Had to phone a friend again. My geosenses were way off! We let Indy rest and drink some water and then headed to the final.

After signing the log, we turned to head back to the car when Indy decided to go off road. Ok, I thought, let her smell the smells...then she puked. I gave her a little more water and she puked again. I figured it was because she swallowed alot of air while drinking from the water bottle? We walked a little further and she puked again. Her panting had a horrible rasping sound to it, too. She didn't want to walk anymore. Her vomit became a really thick foamy globby mess. She looked frightened and refused to walk.

Sam had no choice but to carry her back to the car, about .25 miles away. Her 66 lbs. of dead weight quickly wore Sam out and he had to set her down a few times before we got to the car. I cranked up the AC and hoped that it would help. Sam got on my cell phone and called our vet's office and the answering service told him to take her to Knowles Clinic on Sunset. So we headed that way as quick as we could! Her tongue started to turn a pale purple color and she was having a hard time breathing. It was scary.

We got to Knowles and Sam carried her in. One look at her and they rushed us back to the OR and a team of folks immediately started working on her...IV of electrolytes, oxygen, blood work, a shot of steroids, temperature taken(109!!!!). We had to get her cooled down so they packed her with ice and a cold wet towel across her body. They inserted a nasal oxygen tube, which she did NOT like at all, poor thing! We waited and waited...her temperature slowly began to come down to normal. Whew!

The doctor said he was keeping her overnight to keep an eye on her and run more tests. I called back that night to check on her and he said she was much better, although some level of something in her blood was elevated. it happens with extreme body can affect the blood and it can begin to coagulate! Two of her levels were fine, but the one was high. He'd keep a close eye on her.

This morning I called first thing and he told me her levels had all dopped to normal! Thank God! And that she could probably go home tonight. He is pretty dang sure she has a condition called pharyngeal paralyisis, something common with older labs and other large breeds. I googled it and it seems they can correct it with surgery (more $$$, but she is worth it!). Anyway that condition combined with the heat may have cause a heat stroke. No more walks for Indy unless they are on a cool night or in the winter!!!

At lunchtime, Sam and I went to see her and she looked good! Didn't like the tube in her nose, but other than that seemed fine...breathing good and calm. She was happy to see us!

So, here I am waiting to give the good Doc a call and see if I can go pick her up. I assume I'll be taking her to her regular vet tomorrow to discuss all of this.

So, we found the cache but almost lost my old girl. I don't think I'll be in the mood to go caching for a while now. That cache will forever be in my memories as the worst caching experience EVER!


Sandcastle Momma said...

Poor Indy!! That's horrible. It sounds like you got her to the vat just in time. Bless her heart. I can see how this would leave a bad taste in your mouth for caching but hopefully once Indy's home you can relax some and will be out hunting the next one before long.

Floridacracker said...

Yikes! That was scary. I'm so glad she's doing better and gets to come home.
Good job getting her to the vet quickly!

VitaminSea said...

That's a long drive, from Deering to the Knowles place on Sunset. I can only imagine what you all went through, worrying on that drive!

And I'm so glad to hear she's okay!
Hang in there, and keep us posted.

SwampAngel65 said...

Thanks everyone! We just got back from picking her up and she seems fine. I have her xrays to show her regular doctor and the emergency doc pointed out a couple things on them he was concerned about...couldn't tell what they are...cancer? pneumonia building? He said she needs an ultrasound to better tell what the shadows are. But for now, she's fine. Just an official house Lab now!

exoticdvm said...

Poor Indy! I hope she feels better soon. Sounds like a scary caching adventure. Any chance a Bufo toad or some other toxin could have been involved with Indy's sudden symptoms?

I bet I can guess who the phone-a-friend was?! hehe.

Dani said...

Glad Indy is feeling better. So scary!!

SwampAngel65 said...

Nope, I bet it wasn't who you think, Marc!

No, no toads or anthng else. We had been on the asphalt road up until she went off it to start throwing up. It seems this is going to really affect the rest of her life!

Thanks Dani. Oh yeah, it was very scary! But so far, has a happy ending :)

JG said...

OMG you must have been so scared. Bruno sends big slurpy doggie kisses...I hope she's doing better today

Baloo said...

*ruff*, Indy. I am sorry you felt bad. Us doggies have to stick together. This heat is not good for us pups. *woof*! *lick*

lisaschaos said...

Wow! What an experience!!

Would you believe that we just archived about 88 caches? Yep, now we're down to 5-8. :) Oh the relief and ease.