Dixie is sick. And the truth is, I am a little scared.
It all started a few weeks ago. Calvin was perched on the couch, watching for squirrels or people to pass by. He saw someone and barked, awaking Dixie, who was sleeping in our bedroom. She came running down the hallway at full speed, barking in defense, but slipped and fell on the floor. She yelped in pain, and we figured out she hurt her shoulder.
The same day, the dogs stayed overnight at my mom’s house. Dixie loves my mom’s comforter, or as we call it, the “cloud”, and will sleep in it any chance she gets. My mom woke up and noticed that the bed had light pink blood in it. She thought it was from a scrape on Dixie’s shoulder, but Seth and I didn’t notice any cuts or scrapes. Knowing what I know now, I think she sneezed and bled from her nose.
A few days later, she had her teeth cleaning. I noticed she was starting to get the sniffles, but didn’t think anything of it, since she has allergies. The vet said she looked great otherwise and we went ahead with the cleaning.
Ever since then, she has not been the same. Her nose has been plugged up and she is having trouble breathing. We thought it was a cold at first, but now, I’m not so sure. She had been taking one type of antibiotics, and we saw no results. I went back to the vet last Monday, and she told me she was a little concerned that Dixie’s nose wasn’t clearing up, especially after the antibiotics. She said it was possible that Dixie could have nose cancer or something stuck in her nose. She also said that we could try another antibiotic, which we are doing now, since I wasn’t ready to commit to a huge x-ray bill.
She is halfway through her antibiotics and we haven’t seen any positive results yet. A few days ago, she started to have bloody mucus run out of her nose after she sneezes. I feel terrible because I don’t know if she is in pain or is uncomfortable. She has to breathe through her mouth at night and I can tell her mouth is really dry. I bought a humidifier for the room, hoping that helps clear her airway a little bit.
She has lost some weight and feels really skinny to me. She still has an appetite, which is great, and she acts interested in things (walks, treats, people). I know she is an older dog and she won’t be around forever. I just did not expect this to happen now.
I had a meltdown the other night. I was brushing Dixie's fur and it was falling out in clumps. I called the vet crying and they told me if I notice any behavior changes, we would want to bring her in.
I think I’m just worried. It’s hard for me to see her like this, since she is my baby. She has been my favorite impulsive purchase. She wasn’t planned. We weren’t even talking about getting a dog. On a Friday night in 2012, I had the urge to look at the Humane Society’s website, and I saw her picture. She looked so scraggly, but there was a little twinkle in her eye, and I knew I had to go see her.
She was in the crates next to all the puppies, even though she was much older. She qualified to be in the puppy crate because of her size. At first, I wasn’t so sure that she had much of a personality. I think she was heartbroken. We learned that she had been adopted two different times. Her owner had to give her up because they were going to have a major surgery and couldn’t care for Dixie anymore. They guessed that she was six years old. We always had a feeling she was much older than that.
Dixie has always been wise beyond her years. Sometimes, I think she is more mature than me. We call her Granny because she is our little grandma dog with an old soul.
Keep her in your thoughts and prayers. I am hoping that this stuffed nose will pass, but if it doesn’t, Seth and I will have some tough decisions ahead of us.