Friday, December 28

A Creepy-Crawling Christmas Near-Catastrophe.

Hi there. It's been awhile, huh? Hoping you had a lovely, frosty, beautiful Christmas day. Our stretch of holiday celebrations (not over yet) has been... mostly wonderful, with a generous side of crazy. Shall I share how we kicked things off?

We arrived at Kyle's parent's house on Saturday. Bailey and Teddy bounded through the 13 inches of snow for a bit, then settled in. Kyle unloaded suitcases and crates and boxes of presents. We were all set for an idyllic Yuletide celebration.

While I was petting Bailey later that night, I saw a red bump on her nose. It was very small, but still raised and noticeable. It didn't seem to bother her, and after confirming it wasn't a dreaded tick, I didn't worry about it.

Well, not until the following morning. Kyle woke up first, walked out into the living room, and shouted for me to come see her. She came trotting over to me, her face blown up like a balloon, her eyes almost swollen shut. It was a bad scene.

Kyle called the local animal hospital at 8:30 AM. They asked about her swelling and her symptoms, and after he mentioned the red bump, they said it sounded like a reaction to a spider bite. Poor baby :( The vet told us to give her not one, not two, but three doses of Benadryl every eight hours and keep a close eye.

The swelling went down a little bit. Bailey got even more laid-back than usual thanks to her meds. We fretted over her most of the day. Then we started opening presents.

Five o'clock rolled around -- eight and a half hours after her first dose of Benadryl, and somehow we missed our cue to drug her up again -- and she started choking. Like hacking and gagging on her tongue, which was suddenly purple and about five times its normal size. It was the worst. I thought my dog was going to die in the middle of a family Christmas, surrounded by 20 or so people, from a freaking spider bite (and our negligent care -- am I going to be a failure as a mother?).

We fumbled to get the Benadryl tablets in the kitchen -- which, by the way, could they make those packets any harder to open up? -- and I tried to shove the first one down her throat, which was nearly closed. It ended up in the side of her mouth, staining her chin a dashing bright pink. I can't really remember what we tried next... I think peanut butter? Anyway, we eventually got the Benadryl into her system. Her tongue was still really swollen, along with the rest of her normally beautiful face, but the scariest of scaries had passed.

Then she barfed up her entire dinner on the family room carpet.

We called the vet again -- "Hi, we were late giving her that second dose of Benadryl and she almost asphyxiated on her tongue and just now threw up everything, including probably the medicine" -- and they told us to give her three more tablets, and four more in the middle of the night.

If you're keeping track, that's 13 Benadryl tablets in less than 24 hours.

But hark! A Christmas miracle. She woke up the next morning looking like this...

Yawning -- let's face it, she had a rough day and night -- but gorgeous once more!

Arachnophobia notwithstanding, we're having a great holiday season. We've visited with both families, spent some quality time in our own house while wicked weather swirled outside, and managed to strike a good balance between chaotic merriment and nice, slow stretches of nothing-in-particular.

And that's just how Christmas through New Year's should be.

Last post of 2012 coming soon. Bunny is closing in on 30 weeks of cooking, and I think that's reason enough to celebrate. Happy Friday!


  1. Poor girl! I'm so glad she's okay now! That would be incredibly frightening.

  2. So glad Bailey is ok! I was holding my breath waiting to read the rest of the blog post to be sure. I should have known all was ok after seeing you at work today--radiant and happy! :)

  3. Poor sweetheart!!! And poor parents! :( You guys must've been terrified. I can totally picture that scene with the choking with the tongue and trying to put a Benadryl in the throat... How scary.

    I'm glad she recuperated and is feeling better.