It happened because I was careless.
After exercising, I came out of the room to find Owl chewing on something. It was an Ibuprofen bottle. And it was empty. Oh no! I ran to my purse and felt around inside. I was hoping that the now empty bottle was not the one I carried that actually contained Ibuprofen. But I knew that it was. Other things had been taken, too, and the evidence was in plain sight.
Looking around on the floor, I managed to find three tablets. But how many had there been? I tried to remember. Had the bottle been nearly full? Half empty? Almost empty? I could not confidently answer those questions.
Owl and Teo were the only possible overdose victims because Viljo and Taya were still out in the dog yard.
Okay, you two. I went for the bottle of Hydrogen Peroxide that I keep on hand for just such a situation. Owl and Teo followed me into the kitchen where they each received a dose. Then I waited.
While waiting, I made my post-exercise protein shake which today included some frozen blueberries. In the habit of giving each of the dogs a couple pieces of whatever frozen fruit I am using that day, I gave Owl and Teo their morning berries. I would later regret doing that, I just didn't know it yet.
Within five minutes, Teo produced. He retched twice and vomited and there were no pills! Just a few small undigested pieces of the almonds I'd given him from my snack last night. AND a bit of orange string from one of the pilfered items.
Owl was not as forthcoming. Bright-eyed and playful, he was trying to return to my good graces after the over-due scolding for getting into my purse in the first place.
I have kept my purse on the wood chair beside my entrance table for a dozen years and never had a problem. But I'd recently seen Owl reach in and take out an apple that I took to work but didn't eat. And, as it was "only an apple" I didn't do or even say anything about it. Going without correction then, it should not have been surprising to me that Owl figured purse diving was okay. And worthwhile.
About an hour passed from the time I'd taken that seemingly delicious plastic bottle away from Owl. I was in a real quandary. Vet? No vet? Vet? No vet? Vet? No vet?
Finally, up it came, the contents of Owl's stomach. It wasn't much, but it took three quick up and outs to satisfy the urge caused by the peroxide. No pill fragments seen there, either! BUT, the emesis was dusky pink, almost the same color as the coating on the pills. Was it from that? Or was it from the three or four blueberries he'd eaten an hour ago? I decided it was from the blueberries.
After the third heave, it went downhill. Owl was sitting and I saw him bob his head to the right. Become alert. Bob his head again. Now his eyes didn't look so good, either. Watching him carefully, I hammered myself for an answer to another question: Was he experiencing some vertigo due to the vomiting or was he going into CNS depression? Dizzy or sleepy??? It was very difficult to say.
When Owl, still sitting up, closed his eyes and lowered his head - with a bit of his tongue protruding from the front of his mouth, I decided to question no longer. I put Teo in his crate, tucked Owl under one arm, grabbed my purse with the other, and went out the door.
We got into the car with Viljo and Taya still in the kennel fence and wondering, I am sure, why I was leaving with them still out there. It almost never happens.
Owl didn't make a sound in the crate. Praying and trying to think positive thoughts. I alternated between being calm and being scared. My new vet is on the north end of town, an hour away. Should I go there or stop at a clinic I know on the south side and save 15 or 20 minutes? What was I going to see when I opened Owl's crate? Why didn't I act sooner? Why did I leave my purse on the chair?
How such thoughts hammer us in situations like this.
I called to Owl a few times, "Hang in there, Owl."
I opted for the closer clinic. The hours posted on the door said they were open. I went around to Owl's crate. And there he was, looking at me as nicely as could be! He came to the door when I opened it. What an absolutely tremendous relief!!! Nevertheless, I grabbed him out and went to the door. The doors were locked. The clinic was not open despite the posted hours.
Now what? Putting Owl down, we crossed the lot to some grass. He peed. He looked okay. Maybe 90% instead of 100 but quite alright. Should I have him checked out anyway? Well we are up here this far, l will go on. If Owl looks fine when we get to our own clinic, great. But if anything looks questionable, I will take him in.
If the receptionist saw us through the window, she saw a longhaired dachshund hop with his person out of the silver CR-V, amble over to the pine trees, lift his leg a few times, sniff poop left by other dogs, investigate trash cans out by the curb, and look with interest toward the buffalo wings place next door. Gearing up for dinner, the smells must have been great, though I cannot say that I noticed. I was busy watching Owl.
We got in the car and went home.
Moral of the story: Keep your purse out of your dogs' reach and never say never.