Two years ago (2011) in June I walked into the Animal Shelter in my town. I, like my mother, would go into the shelter from time to time looking for the perfect companion. I, admittedly, went into the shelter that day looking for one dog in particular but came to find he had already been adopted. I turned to walk out the door but a family picking out a puppy was between the door and I. Just then a shelter volunteer struck up a conversation with me about the dog in the kennel in front of me. A little black and white, 8-year old, Cocker Spaniel with some pretty obvious cataracts. I wasn’t interested in a dog of that age and kind of brushed her encouragement off. She persisted, going on and on about how sweet this dog was, and I figured, “Hey, I’m not busy, might as well play with a puppy if I can’t adopt the one I wanted.”
Within seconds of getting my Little Miss Cassie in the adoption room I KNEW she was the absolute perfect dog for me. I could barely contain myself as I left. I made the arrangements for her to see a vet when I went back to get her the next day, stocked my house with food, snacks, toys, shampoo, the works. I brought her home (after the spending a pretty penny at the vet to find out that she had an infection that the shelter staff had overlooked.) and she was perfect. Perfect size, energy level, temperament, everything. From then on out we we’re too happy.
Around November 2012 I took her to the vet because her eyes were blood red and she seemed uncomfortable. The vet took her eye pressure and checked for Glaucoma, and gave me some medicated RX eye drops. They seemed to fix things right away. Up until April 2013. I took her to the vet in April because she was vomiting in the house, very unlike her, which turned out to be something she had gotten into. But thank God she had because that was when the vet noticed her left eye had gotten much worse. She had developed Glaucoma and Lens Prolapse in her left eye which was causing a lot of redness and discomfort.
I had prepared myself for the diagnosis because I knew her eyes were bad when I adopted her and that they were getting worse so I can’t say I was too shocked when that was the first suggestion out of my vet’s mouth. I grilled him with questions for over an hour, I had to be sure if I was going to make this decision for Cassie, that it was going to the absolute best option for her. Four days later I took Cassie in for her surgery. The next day I was able to pick her up. Admittedly I wasn’t strong enough to go alone. I had a close friend accompany me to the vet. I’m extremely thankful I did because I bawled when I saw her. I’m not exactly sure why…maybe just seeing your baby (wagging tail and all) without her beautiful eyes really shook me. How would I explain to her later that I’d done it for HER own good?
The next few days were extremely tough on me. Teaching Cassie where everything was, taking her out on a leash to potty, trying to get her to drink water with her cone on (harder than it sounds), and trying not to get frustrated with her. This wasn’t her fault, but I was so overwhelmed and grew impatient at times. I overcame that quickly and as soon as I stopped taking everything so hard, she started improving tremendously! In a week she was able to do everything she could before the surgery, sans the cone, have I mentioned how much I hate the ‘cone of shame’?
Today my Cassie is happy and healthy and I KNOW I did the right thing for HER.