CHAPTER 180 – A Close Call
Abigail stared at her treat. She wanted to eat it, but it hurt when she tried to bite it. Being a rabbit, she pretended nothing was wrong and hopped off of the coffee table and went back to her spot.
But Dad knew better. “You don’t want your treat?” he asked. That seemed odd to him. Also, Abigail didn’t want breakfast. Something was amiss.
“Are you OK, Abigail?” he asked. Abigail sat against the wall, not moving. Dad gave her a pet and then said, “I’m going to pick you up now, OK?” Normally, Abigail would bolt, but she stayed put. That was unusual.
Dad took her into the kitchen and checked her for lumps, fly strike, and anything else that might be amiss. But he didn’t see anything. He weighed her. “OMG, you’ve dropped even more weight since a month ago!” explained Dad. Dad set her in his lap and brushed her.
Abigail waited until he was done and then hopped off the couch and back to her spot. Dad placed all sorts of her favorite food in front of her, trying to tempt her, but she just ignored them. He noticed she hadn’t used the loo, either.
“OK, Abigail, that’s it,“ Dad said. “We’re going to the vet! This is not good!”
Fortunately, Dad had the best rabbit vet in the area on “speed dial”. Dr. Stern, a board-certified rabbit vet, squeezed Abigail into her very busy day. Dad knew the ride to the vet was over a very twisty road, so he took a towel and rolled up the ends to form a u-shaped pad and placed it on a piece of non-slip carpet inside the carrier to hold her in place.
Once the carrier was ready, Dad got up and anxiously went looking for Abigail. “Abigail, where are you?” he called. She was nowhere to be found. He checked all her usual hidey-spots in the living room, but no Abigail. He even checked behind the book case – her emergency “bolt-to spot”, not there either. Dad started to panic. Where could she be?
Finally, he looked in the bathroom. There was little Abigail, hunched over by the heater vent behind the door. “Are you OK, little one?” he asked. Abigail didn’t like to complain, but she thought, “Not really. I hurt. And I’m cold.”
Dad carefully scooped up Abigail and put her in her carrier. Then, he strapped the carrier in the back seat just to be safe and in case the airbag went off. The bunny ambulance sped off to the vet!
In the waiting room, Dad cuddled Abigail in his arms and said, “Don’t worry baby. We’ll figure this out.” Before long, they were escorted into an examination room.
Dr. Stern observed, “Oh my, her temperature is very low. It’s 94 when it should be 100. She has pus in her mouth. She’s dehydrated. It may be a dental issue, but I can’t look at it without anesthetizing her. I can’t anesthetize her until she’s stable. She’ll need to stay in the hospital until we can hydrate her and get her temperature up.”
Dad looked at Abigail and said, “I’m sorry sweetie. I’m going to have to leave you here. But you’re in the best hands. Don’t worry, I’ll come back to get you.” Abigail looked at Dad as they whisked her off into the back.
Later that afternoon, Dad got a report from the vet. It was not good. She said, “We can’t get her body temperature up. Her little body is shutting down. Her blood work says she’s in kidney failure and she has an infection. We have her on fluids, pain medication, and antibiotics and we’re going to flush her kidneys.” Dad was shocked. He did not realize Abigail was in such dire straits when he left her there. Was he going to lose Abigail?
It was Friday afternoon. “Why do pets always get sick right before a weekend or a holiday?” he wondered. Was Abigail going to have to spend the weekend alone at the hospital? Dr. Stern replied, “We’re closing for the weekend, but I’ll take her home with me to watch her and give you a report in the morning.”
Dad was worried. Would she make it through the night? He felt better knowing Abigail would be in the best care he could give her with Dr. Stern’s personal attention. If anyone could save her, it was Dr. Stern. “Be strong, little one. I know you’re a fighter. Put up a good fight!” he thought. All the boys at the House of Buns wanted the little princess to come home.
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