In this Waggy Tale we meet Bronya, her 4-year old Springer cross Poodle Mindy and brother Mork.
‘She is rather timid until she gets to know you but then is a friend for life. You know that she loves you when she brings you a gift – sometimes cramming 3 toys into her mouth to give you.’ Says Bronya.
Bronya first noticed that something wasn’t quite right, when little Mindy wasn’t as bouncy and playful as usual. Mindy seemed reluctant to get up and wasn’t interested in her breakfast.
Bronya was due to work that day. Fortunately, Bronya’s friend, Auntie Heather, was going to be spending the day with Mork and Mindy, so she went to work concerned, but knowing that Heather would let her know if she had any concerns.
‘Heather sent me a text to say that she had enjoyed her walk and seemed fine, but I had decided I would take her to the vet the following day just to check all was well.’
‘When I returned from work however, she didn’t come to greet me with a mouthful of toys as usual, she was upstairs on my bed and wouldn’t move. She had black matter plastered to her fur around her bottom and tail. I took her straight to the vet where she was found to be dehydrated and clearly very poorly. They admitted her straight away and she had a drip to rehydrate her. I was so shocked that Mindy could so rapidly decline after seeming fine on her walk the day before.’ Explains Bronya.
The vet carried out blood tests to try and determine the problem. The results were worrying. Mindy wasn’t making platelets and was bleeding internally. The vets needed to stop the bleeding, so Mindy was given Vitamin K as well as antibiotic.
Bronya and the vets thought the cause may have been rat poison, as there had been several cases locally that week. However, she didn’t respond as she should and showed zero platelet count.
‘They ran more specialist blood tests and even sent them away for double checking in case their machines were misreading the count, but they came back the same and I was told that Mindy was now critically ill with only a tentative diagnosis of Thrombocytopenia (Low platelet count)’.
‘She was now on day 3 and I was becoming really scared. On day 4 I visited her in the morning and could tell that she was fading fast.’ Says Bronya.
Day 4 was a Saturday, and Mindy’s regular vets were both off, so a locum vet was on duty. She said that Mindy needed a blood transfusion but there was no blood available due to it being the weekend.
‘I was in panic mode by now, convinced that I was going to lose her, so I took the chance of ringing Uncle Dave (Mindy’s regular vet) who was in London and explained what had happened. He set off straight away back to Horncastle and as soon as he arrived told me to meet him at the surgery with Mork (Mindy’s brother). He set up an emergency transfusion from Mork to Mindy and we just prayed that it would work.’
‘The vets were so kind, reassuring and loving to Mork and Mindy that they just let him get on with what he needed to do – they are so brave. Mindy’s blood count finally rose above the dangerous level, and after 2 more nights she came home to us – very weak but very happy.’ Adds Bronya.
Bronya was given various forms of medication for Mindy including antibiotics and steroids. Mindy suffered multiple side effects from the steroids, so Bronya made the decision to wean her off them as she couldn’t bare to see her suffer from medication.
‘It was a risk, but she started to pick up as they came out of her system and she is now recovering (I hope). Slowly but surely with a lovely diet of porridge, eggs, cucumber, oranges, fresh vegetables and her favourite dog food. She is very tired still and can’t walk far so to make it easier to take Mork on his usual long walks too, we have bought a push-chair, so she can join in when she feels like it and have a rest when she needs it.’ Says Bronya.
Mindy has her next set of blood tests in the coming weeks to see if she is still improving. The Buddies team and Mindy’s family have all fingers, paws and toes crossed for good news.
‘I can’t thank the staff at Banovallum Vets enough for their care and attention to both Mindy and I. I was equally as impressed with the service I received from Buddies. I received excellent service I from the entire Buddies team during a really traumatic time. The team are all so compassionate and sympathetic when I call, and I am astonished at how quickly and efficiently you deal with the claims I have submitted.’ Says Bronya.
Huge thank you to Bronya and her family for sharing Mindy’s story, and for their kind words.