Thank you so much for all your supportive comments. I can’t express how much they’ve meant to us.
Hobkin is back home again. Wasn’t sure if he was going to pull through this morning. When our vet listened to his breathing and lungs and heard how bad the wheezing was and how much fluid had built up, he actually suggested we consider euthanasia.
I had a total meltdown. I simply couldn’t accept that Hobkin was ready to go yet, but I was afraid, too, that my judgment was off. Maybe I was just being selfish and incapable of letting go when Hobkin wanted to call it quits.
The vet went to give Hobkin another Lasix injection as well as a couple other meds and some subcutaneous fluids, and Hobkin tried to bite him. Then I knew that Hobkin wasn’t ready to give up (this is the vet–Hobkin has two vets at the clinic we take him to–that he doesn’t get along with). If he was finished and ready to let go, he wouldn’t have cared who was doing what to him. Of course, I rushed to pick him up then, and immediately he quit snarling, clung to me, and let them do whatever they wanted to him without a peep.
Went into frantic brainstorming mode after that. Asked the vet to rig a face mask to administer oxygen so I could hold him. They keep trying to keep us out of the room when he’s in the oxygen box, but I know that he’ll be less stressed if he’s with me. I held him all morning and into the afternoon until the vet’s office closed, and between the drugs, the subcutaneous fluids, and being able to be with me, his breathing improved to the point of all the wheezing vanishing.
But we couldn’t take him home if he wouldn’t eat. I remembered when we were dealing with cancer in our ferrets that they would accept Nutrical when they wouldn’t stomach anything else. So I asked the vet if we could try that. It was a sticky mess, and it took some coaxing, but Hobkin devoured a large dollop of it. Huge knot of worry melted away right there.
Knowing there was still a good chance we’d end up having to take him back to the emergency vet this weekend, fosteronfilm and I decided to take him home. I also asked the vet to show me how to administer subcutaneous fluids. Did it with the ferrets, and it’s so much better if I can do it at home instead of having to make a trip to the vet’s.
Hobkin has been cuddled with me in his little oxygen face mask at home instead of being in the oxygen box, and I think that’s really made him happier and more comfortable. I sent Matthew to the pet store to pick up some crickets and mealworms. Hobkin actually pounced at those. Eww, but OMG-thank-all-the-good-spirits-that-watch-over-sick-critters. And I just got him to eat a little yogurt with healthy powder and half a hard-boiled egg.
Hobkin in his oxygen face mask–which is more like a dome or helmet than a mask. It doesn’t need a tight seal since we’re only trying to increase the percentage of oxygen he’s breathing, not administer 100%.
This has been an utterly grueling emotional roller coaster, and we’re definitely nowhere near out of the woods. As we saw yesterday, Hobkin could backslide without warning. We’re taking it hour by hour. But he’s still fighting, and we’re still hoping.