Sunday, August 31, 2008

Farewell to Dallas

Thus far, 2008 has not been a good year at all.
In March, I caught the flu and was very sick for nearly six weeks.
Then the economy has been taking its toll on my business, meaning that although I am doing the work, I am only getting partial payments, or in several instances, notices of bankruptcy filings where I am a named creditor. This means lots of appearances in the federal courthouse to stay on the list of creditors who are apportioned something.
In June, one of my workers announced she was getting married in July. Apparently, getting married leads to total lack of common sense and she opened an email with a "greeting card" attachment. Now, I have a very strong rule with regard to my office computers which is as follows: -- NO emails are to be opened unless they are on an approved list of senders and the original email address checks out (which generally means we call and determine if we have been sent the email). I have very good and very expensive virus software. All of which was useless when "Miss-19-years-old-and-I’m-in-love-and-what-if-the-card-was-sent-from-Prince-Charming?" decided to ignore office policy and hit the "open the attachment" button in the email. You guessed it – after ten house calls from my computer whiz, restoration of my backup files (which thankfully were not corrupted) and entering two weeks worth of work, we were back in business.
That same month my quarter horse, Dallas, developed colic in the intense heat of summer in Fresno. It was 112 Fahrenheit when Dallas started showing signs of distress. I immediately called his vet who came out and treated him. Dallas was given pain killer, mineral oil, antibiotics and lots of water. We kept him walking for almost 26 hours straight. It was touch and go, but he pulled through. The vet was concerned that another bout of heat would be bad for Dallas at 27 years of age.
But now my left hip was hurting so bad that I could barely walk, sit upright, stand, or lay down for any length of time. I was referred to an osteopathic doctor who determined that I had no cartilage left on the top of the femur. So off to the surgeon for a total left hip replacement on August 27th. All went well until they were "seating" the prosthesis and split the femur to my knee. (In layman’s terms, the bone broke in two) That required installing clamps around the bone before continuing the original surgery. I’m home as of yesterday but have been cautioned that I will have limited mobility for at least six weeks before the leg becomes "weight-bearing". Translation – I get to walk with a walker or crutches until mid October.
Fresno was 107 Fahrenheit yesterday. This morning, Justin went out and Dallas was down. Justin took me out to the barn in the back of my car and Dallas got up for me. But when Dr. Stabbe got here, he told me that Dallas’s heart rate was 85, there were no bowels sounds detected in his intestines, his temperature was subnormal and the rectal exam showed the intestines were bloated and twisted. Dallas was in a lot of pain and Dr. Stabbe said that he was "not confident" that treatment would save him. Dallas has been a cantankerous and crusty character, but he was been my faithful companion for fifteen years. I was not going to put him through the agony for a slim chance of survival. We did that in July and here he had now coliced again less than five weeks later.
Dr. Stabbe offered to go his horse trailer and take him to his clinic and euthanize him there since I was not in any shape to load and drive Dallas by myself.
Dallas left my house for the last time 15 minutes ago.

9 comments:

Lorette said...

Wow. There aren't enough "I'm so sorrys" that anybody can say to help with this tragedy. You'll be in my thoughts and prayers.

sophanne said...

Oh kathleen-- so sad so sad with you. What a year. Thanks so much for the update. I did start to wonder where you were a few months ago.

zquilts said...

Oh ! I am so so sad for you. No not a good year at all - in any way. Losing Dallas is like losing family member - I lost three critters this year myself. Be easy on yourself...it all takes time.

Kiki said...

Aw I'm so sorry to hear of your loss! Take it easy and take care of yourself!

knottykitty said...

Kathleen--So, so sorry to hear of your loss and also of the very "adventurous" year you've been having! Our animal companions are so deeply entrenched in our hearts---I'm so sorry you had to say goodbye to Dallas. Take good care and hope your heart and your body will heal quickly. Sending (((hugs))).

deb

QuiltingFitzy said...

I'm sorry for your loss. A special thanks to your thoughtful vet.

Hugs from the desert.

Regarding your computer problems..I work for our county offices. We are not to do personal e-mail.period.with.risk.of.termination. Can't be any more pointed than that. It has saved our offices gajillions.

Mokihana said...

I am so very sorry about Dallas. We had the same thing happen to Thunder here at our place, only it wasn't hot. We had to call the vet at 2 a.m.; same symptoms as Dallas. It was a horrible night.

You have had a time of it... I'm sorry for everything you've had to go through lately. I hope your days get better...

Suzanne said...

I am so sorry.

Life's a Stitch said...

Oh, so sad. I thought I was having a bad year. Hope things are looking up very soon.