Butch is 15 years old and in dog years that is 105 years old. He is partly blind with cataracts forming over both eyes, partly deaf and can't hear very well (except when you call him for dinner), and is becoming incontinent. No surprise really given his age, but he can still give you a lick on the nose, loves a scratch under the chin, and trots around okay without too much trouble. I call him our "Grumpy Teddy" because he looks like a toy teddy bear.
We had a bit of a scare concerning him this week. On Sunday night, he coughed continuously all night, and there was not much we could do for him except stay up and calm him down. We got into the local vet on Monday afternoon, and she said that his left lung was very constricted, and due to his age it could be a growth or cancer pressing against his lungs. So we booked him in for an X-ray to see what was going on, but could not get in until today. The vet gave us some antibiotics to give to him in case it was a chest infection.
Over the next few days we feared the worst, but the antibiotics had taken the edge off of his coughing. He was still quite sprightly and moving around alright, and his appetite was not impaired in any way at all. After all, we keep him around to dispose of some of our food waste, as well as the unconditional love he gives us of course.
So, today we took him to the vet again for the final prognosis. Once the X-ray had been taken and developed, the vet called us in with a serious tone in her voice. Firstly she showed us what a normal dogs chest should look like. Fine we thought, fearing the worst.
Then she showed us Butch's X-ray. It had lines all over where his lungs were. She informed us that Butch has severe bronchitis, however he can be cured with a 3 week course of antibiotics. She also told us that he does not have any growths or tumours and is still quite healthy for his age.
Kim cried, I breathed a sigh of relief, and Ben gave Butch a pat on the head! Crisis over, and back home with the dog. When we arrived home, our other dog, Holly, gave Butch such an ear bashing for leaving her alone at home that Butch looked like a hen pecked husband down on his luck. So funny, and thank goodness he is still with us and recovering well. Even though he is not human, he is still my friend!