THIS IS MY STORY. IT IS NOT MEANT, IN ANY WAY, TO REPLACE PROPER VETERINARY CARE.
That’s a crazy title, huh? Would a tornado make my dog sick? But remember my taking Flash to the emergency vet on Monday night, then his regular vet on Tuesday morning? You can read about it here, but he suddenly began to act like he was in severe pain, pacing and panting. Just strange behavior. And he’s 13 years old, so I thought it was something serious, life-threatening.
Wednesday, after I posted about the experience, and the vet’s inability to find a problem, we had a series of severe storms, including tornadoes near us. I do live in Oklahoma, after all. But it’s been a couple of years since we’ve had violent weather. Flash’s bones are older. A friend in Australia, Bev Green, asked if he might not have been responding to the barometric changes. (Bev is an amazing photographer, btw – you really should visit her blog)
I said no. No way. Two days in advance? I totally get responding 12 hours in advance, but two whole days? She told me about her older dog which does the same exact thing two days before storms. Then during the storm he’s fine. Would a tornado make my dog sick? She said to ask Mr. Google. So I did. And this is what I found.
- Cesar Milan, whom I respect, at least for doing his homework and knowing things, says that dogs are far more sensitive to barometric change – I’m guessing the older the dog and its bones, the more sensitive to barometric change
- My mother – her replaced knee lets her know a day or so in advance that a storm is coming – why not a senior dog?
- An interesting blog from New Zealand, talking about her own dog reacting to the drop in pressure – the comments are just as interesting and convincing
Link after link after link. Some of the bloggers and commenters describe the exact same symptoms Flash experienced. Poor thing. It’s been so long since we’ve had weather of any sort, we’d forgotten what it was like. And he’d certainly never reacted this way before.
Going with this as the premise, that the tornadic activity, the drop in barometric pressure caused Flash’s pacing and panting, I only gave him the pain relief for the one day. Low and behold, he hasn’t shown any symptoms since. He’s not in pain. Rather, he shows no signs of being in pain.
ALL THAT SAID – if your dog is pacing and panting and acting highly unusual, and especially if it’s a senior dog, please don’t hesitate to take it to the vet. I shudder to think what would have happened had I listened to internet advice and kept him home, only to find out that he had bloat or something. That would have been heartbreaking. I’m telling you MY story.
Wrapped in my story is my vet’s wisdom in not giving him X-rays right away. It was an unnecessary expense. Based on the million questions she asked me, as well as her thorough exam, she let us go home. Baffled, but sure that he wouldn’t die in the next day or two. I’m glad I have a vet I can trust. And definitely tell your vet every last detail. The more information they have when something is wrong, the better they can properly diagnose your dog. This cautionary tale exists to help if you still have no clue why your dog is acting weird after you’ve been to the vet.
So that, my friends, is the story of how a tornado made my dog sick. True story. I should totally go give my old dog a treat for being such a great sport about all of this. I’m thinking a Beef Liver Taffy will hit the spot.
Until I write again …