The Fluffy Dog has the Hershey Squirts

Warning: some graphic poop & mucous talk ahead.

The Fluffy Dog has Canine Cannonbutt. I’m pretty sure that’s the technical term. It’s been happening on and off for six days now, with decently solid poops every second day, and otherwise a mucousy mess that he can barely hold in.

My bromate called me at work yesterday morning to let me know the Fluffster had been pacing and whining frantically, and when released into the yard, his back end basically exploded. The bromate had to actually cut away the Fluffy Dog’s butt hair to clean him up. (Fortunately I have a stash of disposable latex gloves. Unfortunately, the poor bromate didn’t know where they were.)

When I got home at lunch, I inspected the poop, as any good mama does. It was as slimy and mucousy as the last few times, but still no blood. But it reminded me that he had vomited the other day, with some weird slimy phlegm (like, weirder than normal dog puke, I mean). And when I took him out on a playdate on Saturday, he wasn’t really feeling it, and seemed kind of lethargic.

I’ve been trying to feed him milder food (plain chicken breast, overcooked sloppy white rice, a tiny bit of plain yoghurt—rather than his usual steaks and tenderloins and venison), but it doesn’t seem to be working. So I made a vet appointment for today with Dr. Beggs.

This morning, when I threw his Most Favouritest Yard Toy in the whole world (a little red Kong), the Fluffy Dog plodded over slowly and merely sniffed it. I was glad I’d made the appointment. But of course, by the time we got to St. Vital Veterinary Hospital, my goodbad dog was bouncing around happily. Yo! Fluffster in da house! His tail was wagging, his eyes were sparkling, he was begging prettily for treats (no way, diarrhea boy), and he was barking joyfully and singing bits and pieces of the song of his people (it goes like this: “roo-roo-rooooooo-oo-oo, awroo-roo-roooooooo, roo roo”—catchy, eh?).

Long story short, after prods and pokes and stethoscopings and palpationing and a superfun rectal exam in which Dr. Beggs bemoaned her lack of piano fingers and in which the Fluffy Dog demonstrated a classic WTF Face, it turns out that there is nothing immediately shocking. No parasites, nothing infectious, no blood. No palpable tumours or weird prostate changes, no fistulas (a really gross thing to which shepherds in particular are prone). His temperature was fine, heart and lungs were fine, no bad abdominal sounds, and so on and so forth.

So it is possible that this is the beginning of some Inflammatory Bowel Disease, like Crohn’s or colitis. Or it could be a gastrointestinal presentation of an endocrine problem, like Addison’s. Or it could just be that Mr. Fluff is having a bad week. So the fabulous Dr. Beggs (who always explains things so thoroughly, and who seems to really like my animals) advised that we should treat him symptomatically and keep an eye on him. They sent us home with some packets of probiotics, and a two-week course of metronidazole.

It broke his sweet heart that nobody at the clinic would give him treats because of his diarrhoea, although Dr. Beggs won his forever love when she found a bland rice treat for him before we left. But once we got home, cannonbutt be damned, I loaded two of his pills onto a spoonful of peanut butter and let him have at it. I’m thrilled that he doesn’t have anything that’s scary right now, and that he’s cleared to go to daycare tomorrow.

I mean, I’d rather have spent the money on books and wine (or, more realistically, groceries and some new insoles for my winter boots), but no matter how much I try to talk big (“You’re such a bad dog! I’m gonna trade you in for a puppy!”), the truth is that I’m always happy to be in a position to take care of the animals. It’s tight sometimes—heck, a lot of the time—but I figure this is part of the job.

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22 thoughts on “The Fluffy Dog has the Hershey Squirts

  1. sonofabeach96

    Eeek! Sick dogs aren’t fun. I remember the day clearly! The day I learned my gag reflex works in uber-drive, at the sight of a large kennel bottom pan filled with I’m still not sure what, hovering atop the fuming and and all-too-graphic display beneath me. To rescue the cutest little black lab pup from her dire circumstance, painted into the one dry corner of the pan, whimpering in disbelief, I’m sure, that her little body was capable of producing such an abundance of funk. It’s a moment etched in my brain…and one my wife still laughs about at my expense. 20 years later. Like I said, sick dogs aren’t fun. Glad he seems to be fine though. πŸ™‚

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    1. nissetje Post author

      Oh, dear Dog, did that poor puppy have parvovirus? I am imagining a steaming lake of slime. At least my guy has been pooping into the snow where it soon freezes! Makes cleanup easier. πŸ™‚

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      1. sonofabeach96

        No, no parvovirus. Just got ahold of something that didn’t settle well. It likely wasn’t as bad as I make it out to be, but I was gagging like a mofo! Happened overnight, and when I went to get her to take her outside that morning, there it was. Poor thing was trapped in the back corner and I had to hover over it to get her out. Fucking awful!!!! πŸ™‚

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        1. nissetje Post author

          Sounds terrible. And you described it so vividly. I imagined a flood of disgusting fluids several times the body mass of the actual puppy, haha!

          I mostly don’t have trouble with th3e various things that come out of the animals. Maybe I got used to it during my time as a vet tech. But human fluids? Man, I could NOT be a nurse for people. And then there’s pus. That’s just nasty no matter what creature it’s coming from. Ew.

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  2. izabolinha

    Oh Charlie ,
    were you into the leftovers from mommy’s parties ? And aren’t you just like my kids were ? As soon as they arrived at the doctor’s office any illness or malaise disappeared as by miracle πŸ˜‰
    Take your probiotics and be a good boy , don’t worry Mommy
    Get well soon and Turtle Hugs

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    1. izabolinha

      Sorry , fluffy Dog , my mind is playing tricks with me today .:(
      I totally messed up here .
      Anyways , I do hope you’ll get better soon
      Turtle Hugs from a very crazy Turtle πŸ™‚

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          1. nissetje Post author

            The Fluffy Dog does try, though. For example, at the vet clinic, he kept banging the treat jar with his nose and then staring pointedly at the staff: “It’s right there! Right THERE, dammit! CAN’T YOU SEE I’M STARVING???”

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  3. honestme363

    Here is something I don’t know how to do: how not to worry when one of the animals are sick. My old girl wasn’t eating any dog food – for 3 days!! Turns out she was with holding for kitchen scraps! Too much deer meat and wouldn’t eat unless there was a bit of some canned food mixed in. Spoiled!! Hope the fluffy one is back to normal ASAP. Messy business.

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    1. nissetje Post author

      Aw, I’m glad your girl turned out to just be spoiled. πŸ™‚ Yes, I am a big worrier about the critters. I try to be reasonable and not run to the vet for every little thing, but this has been going on for six days, so I thought it was time. Then we get there and he’s all happy and bouncy. Has he lost weight? No. Is he dehydrated? No. Fever? No. So of course all the staff must think I am just overanxious. Well, whatever. I love that dog with all my heart and I just want him to be happy and healthy!

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      1. honestme363

        They are always like that! Dog has a limp for weeks but walks on all fours when they arrive at the clinic…must be the smells? to make them cover up their injuries. Better safe than sorry and sooner than way too late. I wanted to tell you too how much I valued your opinions on forgiveness (SOB’s post). You were spot on, on a lot of things there and you gave me a lot of food for thought.

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        1. nissetje Post author

          Better safe than sorry indeed, especially when it comes to a real life waggy person!

          Glad you enjoyed my ranting on SOB’s post. I felt like I kind of went overboard but I have OPINIONS!!! I think I’ll try to make it into an actual post one of these days, something a little more coherent.

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          1. honestme363

            It was thought provoking, all of it, from beginning to end. My mind was reeling after because the whole concept has been playing in mind these last few weeks. Lots of food for thought. Will look forward to reading that post whenever it comes about. I was thinking the same thing πŸ˜‰

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    1. nissetje Post author

      He goes to doggie daycare on Wednesdays. When I packed his daycare lunch this morning, he was delighted, so I guess he’s feeling decent today. I sure hope this is just an anomalous blip as opposed to the start of a long-term condition. My sweet goofy guy.

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  4. melindasmoot

    This is like, EXACTLY, what I experienced with my old girl the week of Christmas. Thankfully she seems to be better with a change in her food…and she must be feeling better because when she ate super slow before, now she gobbles down her new food. Hope your doggy is feeling better now!!

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    1. nissetje Post author

      Thank you so much! And I’m glad to hear your old girl is feeling better. It’s always particularly worrisome with an older dog!

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