In the Blink of an Eye…

I had big plans for this weekend. Saturday was Janet’s one-year anniversary open house at her store, The Empty Nest. I had to make sure I was in town so I could attend. Sunday was for finishing a painting project.  A nasty turn of events Saturday evening changed all that. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Main Street in OTW
Main Street in OTW

Saturday dawned hot, but otherwise nice.

I spent some time at The Empty Nest first thing in the morning. Then I went to the Farmers’ Market (had to get my tomatoes), stopped at Kelly Ann’s Quilting and Sherrie’s Stuff to say hey. Went back to the Empty Nest for lunch (I figured I’d be helpful and make sure Janet didn’t get stuck with too many leftovers).

I had an ulterior motive for staying away from the house. Hubby is installing a hardwood floor in his office. There’s nothing I can really do to help him, and it’s quite noisy. Big-ass air compressor running, pneumatic nailer going, the sound of planks hitting the plywood floor. Life in a construction zone.

Not that I’m complaining. I just don’t enjoy sitting around an otherwise quite house with all that stuff going on.

It was much more pleasant hanging out in Janet’s nicely air-conditioned shop, meeting some of her old and new customers, and listening and she and her lovely assistants, Carol and Sue, interacted with folks.

Of course, I captured a few pics to share here…

Janet talking with customers.
Janet talking with customers.
The Empty Nest
The Empty Nest
Mom's punch bowl.
Mom’s punch bowl.

I find that last picture sort of interesting. My intent was just to capture Mom’s punch bowl, loaned to Janet for the day, which was sitting on a table in front of a dresser with a mirror. Completely unintentionally, I got a perfect reflection of a nearby cabinet full of chalk paint. Cool, eh?

I got home around 1:30, planning to do a bit of painting, but Hubby needed me to go to Home Depot for some staples and floor stain. Of course, Home Depot’s stain selection isn’t very big, so I brought the staples home then went out again to The Paint Shop here in OTW to get the stain.

It was around 3:30 when I got back home again. I knew we’d be going out to dinner, so it was too late for paining. Knowing I had all day on Sunday, I wasn’t too concerned. We went out to dinner and then afterward I took the dogs for their walk.


They all really enjoy their daily excursion around OTW. I do, too. I enjoy it more when it’s cooler, of course.

The walk was uneventful until the very end. We were about 50 yards from our driveway when a neighbor’s German Shepherd decided to attack.

It was completely out of the blue and unprovoked. We’ve had no issues with the dog before. My girls were all very relaxed. There were no other critters in the area.

Unfortunately, the dog grabbed Belle and tried to shake her. I pushed the dog off and it went back to its owners. That’s when Belle started crying and we noticed she was bleeding. The other dog’s owners were right there, very apologetic, and very helpful. I kept our other dogs calm while they stopped the bleeding. It looked like two small surface wounds.

I brought Belle home, Hubby helped clean her up, we looked at her more closely and weren’t too alarmed. She wasn’t even limping at that point. But about an hour or so later when she did start limping and the wounds were still bleeding, we decided I’d better take Belle to the pet ER.

I have to say, the people at the Prince William Emergency Veterinary Clinic are great. I’ve been there twice this year with Meg, so they were surprised to see me show up for a third visit with a different dog. Lucky for us, they weren’t very busy and we were seen right away.

Upon examining her, the vet said they’d need to sedate her and shave her shoulder to get a closer look at the injuries. They needed to see how deep they were, determine if there were any underlying issues, if sutures would be needed, etc.

As it turns out, when the big dog tried to shake her, she pulled Belle’s muscle away from the bone a bit, forming a fluid-filled sac, which required insertion of a drain. They sutured the upper wound close, cut a new hole below that for the drain, which was also sutured into place, and left the other two wounds, which are not as deep or big, open so they could drain. Belle got a lovely e-collar (cone), too.

She was still pretty groggy when we left the hospital. It was after midnight when we got home.

As the drugs wore off, she got more and more uncomfortable. And the cone terrified her. I finally removed it around 3:00 AM, resolved to just stay awake and make sure she didn’t disturb her injuries.

She was a pathetic mess. I did take pictures to share. I have to warn you, some of the images that follow are pretty graphic. Proceed at your own risk.

The first one was taken around 4:30 or 5:00. Right after I had to cram a pain pill down her throat. (Talk about feeling guilty!)

Belle at her most pathetic point.
Belle at her most pathetic point.

Neither of us got a wink of sleep. She alternated between panting, and trembling, and just could not get comfortable. And I had to make sure she didn’t try pulling the sutures or drain out.

Oh, and drains really do drain, which is why she’s got so much blood on her.

Close-up of Belle's shoulder.
Close-up of Belle’s shoulder.

Once the pain pill kicked in, she started feeling better. Thank goodness. I was really starting to think I needed to take her back to the ER.

Belle later in the morning.
Belle later in the morning.

After Hubby got up, he watched her for a bit and I got some sleep. Then I went to Petco to buy her a better injury collar (prevents her from licking her wounds and disturbing the sutures), which she likes MUCH better. She acts like she doesn’t even know it’s there. It even sort of acts as a pillow.

Belle this afternoon.
Belle this afternoon.

I couldn’t take Belle to the basement since its floor is covered in cream-colored carpet. So I just hung out with them in the living room all day. I actually slept a lot, too. Which was refreshing, after our ordeal.

Belle is doing very well. She’ll need to have the drain removed in 3-5 days, and the other sutures removed in about 10-15 days. The hair should grow back just fine. Now we just need to see if she’s been traumatized by the whole incident. She seems to be fine, mentally, but time will tell.

She won’t be going for any walks until after the drain is removed. Until then, we won’t know how she reacts to seeing other dogs.

The German Shepherd was on us so fast, none of us saw it coming. That may be a good thing. Maybe she won’t associate the attack with seeing an approaching dog.

So that was my weekend. Sigh. I could do without that sort of excitement.

15 Replies to “In the Blink of an Eye…”

  1. O’my…bless Belle’s heart..I’m so y’all had to go through that. Hope she’s feeling better tonight and even more so tomorrow..

  2. Thanks, ladies. She’s doing very well physically. My baby girl has always been a trooper where physical injuries are concerned. She appears okay mentally, too, but we’ll put that to the real test once that yucky drain is removed.

  3. OMG – poor Belle!!! I know she is a real trooper and all but I hope that she doesn’t associate walks with getting hurt (that would be George).

    Feel better little girl!

  4. OMG those poor pictures of Belle just make me want to cry. Poor puppy. I am glad she is feeling better now. Her new injury collar looks like a life preserver and she is wanting to go swimming.

  5. I’m so sorry that happened to your Belle. Lots of kisses and hugs from our house to yours.

  6. What a story – I’m so glad to hear she’s doing better – what a trouper!
    We’ve passed on our downtown walks – I’ve got the chocolate labradoodle – he’s totally harmless, you can rest assured.
    Good info about the Prince William Emergency Clinic – it’s on our frig now.
    Read about your blog from the soup broadcast – really nice photos and stories. – mine’s rather random, but that’s me.

  7. Hi, Craig. I know you. Well, didn’t know your name til now, but you know I love your Doug’s beard.

  8. How horrible for Belle!! What a good mom you are, I hope she’s back to her old self soon.

Comments are closed.