We have an appointment this evening at 5pm at the vet’s office, for both Hazel and Peter.
With our cat Hazel, it is pretty obvious that she has been mauled by fleas en masse, which has been remarkably done while we were away at the wedding! The back of her head and neck are absolutely raw with scabs, poor girl!
With Peter, it is not so clear what is troubling him. Glenn has noticed that he is getting awfully slow in his twice-daily walks. He sticks right by me when I’m home, as opposed to his usual domain (his cave?) in the corner of the dining room. He frequently bites at this left rear leg, and frequently has a very shallow fast pant even when he is at rest. He will often look at me beseechingly, as if trying to tell me something, but the language barrier wins again. We have also seen him contort his head and neck oddly, with his tongue hanging out of the side of his mouth, a position he’ll hold for several minutes.
These odd behaviors in our 14 year old Border Collie mix could be explained by two possible problems. First, he could have the same flea infestation as Hazel, and it is driving him NUTS. His agony could easily be incessant itch, and I am hoping that this is exactly what it is. The second option is infinitely less palatable.
The life expectancy of a Border Collie is 12 years. That is for a PURE BRED dog, which Peter certainly is not! Plus, his adopted sister, Isabel, lived to be 18, and only had to go over the bridge when her legs completely gave out on her. The other factors to consider with Peter involve his tendency to grown lipomas (fatty lumps). He had a HUGE one (at removal vet weighed it at over 2 pounds!) removed from his back several years ago, which luckily was NOT malignant. However, he now has one on his the top of his left rear haunch, in an area you could call his “butt cheek”. That is not where he is licking constantly, but not far from it.
So I guess all these questions will be answered this afternoon. I had read about ‘grass fleas’ being a problems down here before we even moved, but with everything else going on, we didn’t remember to pursue it with the local vets. Our bad, I know, but life was a bit hectic when Apple hired Glenn, and said, “we’ll see you in four weeks’!
That is my official excuse. We’ll see what the vet thinks of that!