Saturday, June 26, 2010

Sago Saga

Our Sago Palm saga started back in April, a week after Easter. Our two puppies ate the bark of one or more of the huge Sago Palms we had planted in our flower bed between the house and the pool. We have since become experts on poisonous plants, but back then we didn't know that the sago is a devil plant. We had about 5 big plants in our yard at the time that the puppies were poisoned. They all came from pups from a sago in my mom's yard from about 35 years ago, so they were big suckers.

Our vet told us that the puppies (particularly the male, Charlie) would probably not live because there was so much damage to their livers. In fact, he stopped their treatment because the treatment didn't seem to be making a difference in their conditions. (Dan had been taking them to the vet on a daily basis to receive subcutaneous fluids.) We were heartbroken. But, we did research on the web on herbs, vitamins, and home-made dog food and began to follow a strict regimen. We gave them mega doses of milk thistle, vitamin C, and dandelion. We baked chicken breasts with garlic and combined that with brown rice and fed this "chicken pilaf" to them everyday. Erin said the dogs ate better than we did. She was probably right. Ha! We also gave them liquid yogurt after every meal. Instead of tap water, we gave them pedialyte and distilled water to drink. All of this was in addition to the Denamarin prescribed by the vet. And, yes, we prayed for our puppies.

Not only did we undertake this massive effort to help them live, every weekend in Houston's hot and humid summer we have been working on removing every toxic plant from our yard. This is how the flower bed by the pool now looks.

Not very attractive... We even bought edging to keep the dogs out of the flower beds. You can see where the stumps of the Sagos were. 

Today we have finally been able to start replanting.

Knock-out roses, bulbine, and liriope...none of which are toxic.


We're pleased with how things are looking, but have a ways to go.

And...just in case you were wondering...the puppies went back to the vet yesterday for a liver enzyme test. It has been a month since the vet has seen them. When we walked in the door everyone came out to look at the puppies. Each of their faces broke out into a huge grin. The technician said "Oh my gosh, Lucy, Charlie, I just can't believe it! The doctor didn't think Charlie had a chance." The receptionist told another customer who was wondering what all the commotion was about, "You just don't understand, these dogs are miracles! They're supposed to be dead." We got the results of the blood work this morning and, although it is not normal yet, it is much, much improved. In fact, we can finally give them their vaccinations.



No comments:

Post a Comment