Poor Henri the Hound (aged 15¾) has had a miserable week having fallen victim to a mystery illness which has turned him off his food and caused him to have dreadful diarrhoea followed by wretched rectal bleeding.
He was whisked off to the vets on Monday and has spent all week there being probed, prodded, jabbed and intimately searched.
Fortunately he was allowed home each evening to see his family and allow him to the opportunity to decorate the floor with a variety of richly coloured body fluids overnight but had to be returned to doggy hospital each morning.
The poorly pooch didn’t eat for 6 days and had a thoroughly awful time. Despite numerous blood tests and X rays, the vets were still scratching their heads on Friday when the kennel-maid appeared with a blood-filled kidney dish containing an enormous worm which Henri had just passed after being given a powerful emetic.
The sight of the mini-serpent seemed to create jubilation amongst the veterinary team who took great delight in high-fiving around the surgery. Henri didn’t seem so amused.
The biggest surprise however was the revelation provided by the X rays, that Henri had broken his back earlier in his life and his spine was being held together by 5€ worth of Phillips head screws! The vets expressed surprise that he had survived whatever the injury had been. The picture below is not the river Thames taken from the opening titles of Eastenders, but Henri's colon showing the passage of his barium meal. The Battersea Power Station-like structure north of the river is the cluster of surgical hardware that would put Evel Knieval to shame.
Henri turned up on our doorstep 5 years ago after being abandoned when his owner died prematurely. He had lived as a hobo for several months going from door to door for scraps. He came in for a meal one day and stayed. Although he was a scruff when he arrived, underneath his matted fur, he turned out to be a rare Briquet Griffon Vendéen with a lovely kind nature. He was welcomed by our army of rescued cats who now adore him as much as do we.
Henri was so full of life when he arrived that we assumed he was about 2 years old and we were mortified to discover that he was actually a 10 year old. During the past 5 years he has proved himself to be a loving, faithful and obedient companion, although his propensity to accidents has been a vets dream.
His treatment has included:
...but otherwise no problems!
Surprisingly Sebastien the vet has started having more exotic holidays in recent years.
Henri seems to have perked up over the past couple of days and is now back at home with a healthier appetite. His body fluids seem to be staying where they should be and fingers crossed he’ll see his 16th birthday in February.
He’s back for a check-up on Monday when I need to settle up with Sebastien for Henri’s week of intensive treatment, although I was a little disturbed to see a pile of Caribbean cruise brochures have appeared in his surgery!
Tales from the