Friday, December 19, 2008

The vet has come and gone. Tonka was such a good boy. I had a good talk with his assistant about mustangs in general and she said she thought all of ours were well-behaved and pretty too. Love that! Then Steve dug around in there with his forceps, at least an inch in, poking and prodding, grabbing stuff, and Tonka just let him. He pulled his head up in pain once, but I'd say that's still within the bounds of good behavior. What a boy. I was glad they didn't have to sedate him. Then he flushed it with iodine, which I must shamefacedly and guiltily admit I haven't been doing, because I didn't think there was an opening big enough. There is. Some gross stuff came out.

The new treatment calls for warm compresses, flushing, and Naxcel shots 2x daily. Maybe for a month. I was thinking, "Okay, that's fine, a lot of work but it's not much more than I have been doing." Then Steve said it's going to be expensive. Okay, well, I'd heard Naxcel was expensive. Then he dropped the bomb. $70 every two days! For a month? But then he said we would be able to back down to once a day when the wound starts to respond. That's a little better... My first thought was that John was going to have a stroke. But you know what? When I called him John just said, "He's worth it." I love my husband!

I got a better idea of why this isn't something we want to have to do surgery on. There are salivary glands, nerves, veins, all kinds of stuff in that area. Besides the fact that surgery is even more expensive than the treatment we've done so far.

He's seen a cheat grass infection like this that migrated all the way down the side of a hunting dog from shoulder to hip and the whole thing had to be surgically removed. He's also dealt with this in his own horse, and he said it took a long time to clear up.

Well, at least this one hasn't spread yet. I feel so damn guilty for not flushing it all this time!

Oh, and it most likely was caused by cheat grass. It seems to have migrated down from underneath the tongue. I can guarantee you I'm going to be more careful about my hay and I'll be checking my fields very carefully next year and spraying any cheat.

Oh, and he did make me feel better about the safety of the antibiotics. I mentioned my sister's horse with kidney failure and he said, "Was it Genticin?" Well, yes, actually now that he mentions it, it was. I had forgotten. He said that can happen with Genticin if they don't stay hydrated. This antibiotic is supposed to be much safer.

John just called, the truck's brakes are acting funny. What a day...


Linda Reznicek said...

Wow. I can't believe it. Another thing to worry about. I have NEVER heard of that. And, that is expensive--your husband's a saint! Good luck.

Kara said...

Eeek! $70 every 2 days for a months!!! But yes, he's worth it. It just sucks when the one that is so "worth it" is always the one that gets hurt.

arlene said...

Cheat grass seeds or 'stickers' have cost us a lot of money over the years.

I bet you know this already because you seem pretty up on things. But just in case; This is what I know about cheat. It's an annual and can be controlled by mowing before it goes to seed. I have burned the grass already in seed. Fire burns the seeds on the ground. I love burning cheat grass and Russian thistle (tumble weeds). Burn baby burn!

I hate it so much. It gets in my socks, in the dogs ears and paws. It gets into the cows mouths..and Tonka's mouth. YUCK.

gtyyup said...

To me that's an unheard of price on the meds!! Ouch!

Your poor guy's going to feel like a pin cushion after a month of that...

Nasty, nasty cheat...I've had it in the dog's ears, but been luck enough to avoid what you're going through.

Andrea said...

Arlene, thanks for the info! I didn't know that at all. My brother in law grows hay and he'll tear out a whole field to get rid of the stuff, says you can't get rid of it otherwise. I wonder if there are different kinds of cheat grass? I did learn this summer that it's a type of brome. I had no idea there were so many kinds of brome out there, and a lot of them are undesirable.

I can't wait to try your approach.