This has been, without exaggeration, one of the hardest months of my life. Easily in the top five. As you all know, Lee Lee had her last nine teeth removed on October 15th. They were in bad shape and really needed to go, and we'd planned that surgery for a few months.
Unfortunately, it turns out that the vet messed up, and her mouth is still bothering her, and she’s cut up her paws really badly trying to scratch at her mouth/cone during her recovery. Since November 6th, we have gone to the emergency vet twice, the original vet who did the procedure once, and a brand new vet once. The original vet believes she is doing as expected, which the emergency vet and our new vet both disagree with.
The emergency vet and the new vet both discovered two oral-nasal fistulas, which aren't uncommon after dentals, but they do open a path for infection and can lead to pneumonia. There also should be no reason for her to still be scratching at her mouth, leading us to believe there are some roots or bone shards that were left behind in her gums during her original surgery. She needs the fistulas closed and dental radiographs to see what exactly is bothering her so we can fix it. We have her scheduled for her (hopefully final) mouth surgery tomorrow.
The past week and a half has been especially tough, with all the vet visits and learning just how badly my poor dog is doing, but I like the new vet so far, and we're both hopeful that by the end of the week she should be back to normal, apart from her paws needing to finish healing up. Honestly, none of this should have happened, and she should have recovered from her original surgery in a week with no need for follow-up care, never mind multiple visits to the emergency vet.
The original vet maintains that she is doing fine, despite continuing to experience discomfort in her mouth almost a month post-surgery, and claims they cannot see any fistulas (which, even if they couldn’t see the holes in her gums, you can tell she has saliva coming out her nose). They also repeatedly did not respond to phone calls during her recovery and prescribed a too-large dose of pain medicine, causing my dog to be completely lethargic and soil herself, and it took over three weeks for her to be able to stand and walk around. The emergency vet and our new vet both agreed on a more appropriate dose for her, and she's almost been herself the past week, apart from the lingering discomfort.
So, that's where I've been. I'm tired, I'm burnt out, and I took the last week off from my day job because I was behind in school and just couldn't keep doing everything. I only just started being able to sleep through the night again the past couple days, as Lee Lee had been keeping me up with her discomfort, and while I hate to put her under surgery again, the new vet is confident that as long as there's not something severe hiding in her gums, like a broken bone, then she should be feeling some significant relief by the end of the week.
This all would have been so much harder without my communities on Twitter, Instagram, and Ravelry, and to all of you who have already heard all this and supported me, thank you so much. It's so good to know that there's a whole community out there that cares about us, and I hope to have a better pupdate for you all soon.