Sunday, November 6, 2011
This morning was very cold and crisp but the sun was shining and Koo was ready for his vet check. You have to love a vet that will come out on a Sunday and not charge you extra. And I do love my vet, Dr. Maci Paden. She started out with a general exam and listened to all my concerns about the old guy. He passed the examine with flying colors with only a slight heart murmur that is common in old animals as the valves thicken. His weight was good. He had good tummy sounds and other than some old man skin he was looking pretty good.
Next she sedated him to have a look in his mouth. Llamas can't open their mouth wide like a horse so she was very gentle and slow. He did have some sharp points on his teeth and like I thought had ground his molars down to almost nothing.
A little more sedation had Koo feeling silly but enabled her to get a contraption in his mouth and prop it open. She filed down his sharp points just in case they were bothering him. Getting inside his mouth made me feel a whole lot better since I imagined a big rotten tooth in there. She told me if that were the case he would probably be drooling and you could smell a bad smell. No abscesses and no rotten teeth.
Next she concentrated on pain. Koo has arthritis. Sometimes when he grazes for any length of time he has trouble picking up his head. It takes him a few minutes to work his head and neck up so we know that he has arthritis in his neck. Koo received a little pain medication to see if that helps bring back his appetite.
Last she drew some blood to send to the lab to see if there was some underlying condition that made him not feel like his normal self. She also suggested I change his feed to see if that would entice him to eat again.
The bottom line is that Koo is old...about the same as a 100 year old man and unfortunately he can't tell us what is wrong and how he feels.
I am so glad I had her out to give my boy the attention he deserves even if he can't tell us what hurts.
I love this old boy and today made me love him even more. Especially when he was all drugged up with his head in a contraption and he started to cush and lost his balance and collapsed. He looked so old and vulnerable that I got a lump in my throat and almost cried.
It sucks (I hate that word but nothing else fits) to get old and I'm not looking forward to it. I hope I have a doctor as kind and caring as Dr. Maci to see me through.