Thor initially came into our clinic as a rescue puppy from the Burlington Humane Society. He was found with his brother and they were estimated to be 12 weeks old. Both puppies were very cute and very scared at first! It was puppy love at first sight for one of our technicians Laura. Thor would be her first puppy and her husband Jim came to meet him right away.
Thor was a shy pup at first but he came around quite fast with love and kindness. Laura adopted Thor through the Burlington Humane Society. As part of their adoption package, all pets get a 6 week trial of pet insurance. This came in very handy for Thor as he ended up having quite a few health issues as a puppy!
The first day he was found, Thor had a complete physical exam by our veterinary health team at Headon Forest Animal Hospital, including a stool sample analysis. We found that Thor had all kinds of intestinal parasites including Roundworms, Hookworms, and Giardia. He also had dry flaky skin and diarrhea. He was treated with medications and shampoo for these issues.
After his 6 week insurance trial period was over, Laura wisely decided it would be a good idea to sign him up for an insurance policy because puppies can get into all kinds of things and cause unexpected expenses!
Thor continued to have itchy skin and developed a skin infection on his belly which needed to be treated with antibiotics. His skin and stools continued to be an issue for poor Thor even after several different medications to help manage these conditions.
We decided to perform allergy testing on Thor and it’s a good thing we did! Thor was allergic to pretty much all meat sources, insects, and trees. He can only have hypoallergenic foods and treats that Laura carefully selects based on his allergy testing results. After several weeks on a hypoallergenic diet, Thor’s stools have normalized and his itchy skin is significantly improved!
In typical puppy fashion, Thor likes to chew on every single thing he can find and quickly eats it while making eye contact as you are running towards him yelling “STOP!”. Thor has chewed and/or eaten a variety of different objects including; slippers, crocs, cat toys, ropes, garbage, rugs, cat litter, sticks, toilet paper, and a toilet paper holder. Thor also snuck about a half tray of kielbasa sausage off the coffee table. Laura has had to induce vomiting on a few different occasions!
One night, Thor suddenly cried in pain and was holding up one of his hind legs. Laura brought him into the clinic for an exam and X-rays. Thor was diagnosed with a condition called Panosteitis. Panosteitis is a painful bone condition in large breed puppies where inflammation develops in the bone marrow of a growing puppy. With lots of rest and anti-inflammatory pain medication, Thor got better and overcame another obstacle, and all before 5 months of age!
At 6 months of age Thor was neutered and not surprisingly, he chewed out his stitches after wiggling out of his onesie. Good thing Laura is an RVT and can handle this little handful!
Lesson learned in the first 4 months of owning a puppy: GET PET INSURANCE! Costs add up quickly and you don’t want to be caught without it. Thor agrees and says “Thanks Mom!