Let me preface this by saying, Mollie is fine and being a little stinker as usual.
Last night was our company's holiday gathering. I left work a little early to go home and change before going to the restaurant. When I got home, the bed linens were off my bed and the cushion coverings were off the couch and loveseat. Oddest of all, my husband and son were not home and Mollie, our eleven year-old beagle was missing. What was going on? I had no clue.
So I changed and got ready to go. My husband came home and proceeded to tell me that Mollie had eaten some semi-sweet chocolate chips so they had taken her to the vet clinic and "it better not cost him half a fortune!". I promptly burst into tears (I'm not a crier and it had been a crappy day to begin with), he felt guilty, gave me a hug and told me she would be okay.
You're probably wondering how she got to the chocolate chips in the first place. The night before, my son was kind enough to clean the kitchen and he did a great job. I bake a lot to send to soldiers stationed overseas and had just completed baking a large batch of cookies. Since I ran out of chocolate chips and needed them to finish, I went to the local warehouse store and bought a 4 pound bag. I had only used 1 cup (1/2 pound) out of the bag. My son, in his effort to be helpful, put the 3 1/2 pound bag of chocolate chips on the bottom shelf of the pantry where normally I store things that are in large plastic containers with lids I have a problem getting open.
To give you a clue as to what a little stinker Mollie truly is, we keep our garbage can in a cupboard because Mollie is notorious for getting into the trash if its out in the open. She's been known to bat at the cupboard door with her paw so it will pop open and she can try (and usually fail) at getting the garbage can to fall out. What we were not aware of, is she tried and was successful at doing the same thing to the pantry door. And last night there was a varietable feast of chocolate chips right at her nose.
Now, I really did not want to go to the holiday gathering. I was frantic about Mollie. She's only 24 pounds and after weighing what was left of the chocolate chips, I realized she had eaten 3 lbs (yes, 3 pounds) of chocolate or 1/8th of her body weight. For those of you who don't speak dog...Chocolate kills! Even a small amount of chocolate can cause kidney, pancreatic or heart failure. Unfortunately, 20 people were waiting for me at the restaurant and I had the tickets for the show afterwards.
Our son was amazing. He kept us informed throughout dinner of Mollie's condition (which was not good) and what the vet was doing to treat her. She had vomited so much that she became dehydrated causing more stress on her heart. Her heart rate and blood pressure had gone through the roof so they started an IV to give her fluids. They were also given her charcoal to absorb any toxins left in her stomach and continued giving her medication to induce vomiting. Unfortunately, she was going to have to be transferred to the emergency vet hospital for continued observation and treatment. I handed everyone their tickets and said I wasn't sure if we were going to make it. Our son had taken Mollie to the vet hospital. He called as the check came to pay for the dinner. He told us to go to the show, he'd stay with Mollie and continue to give us updates but the vet was extremely concerned about the side effects of chocolate poisoning.
We went to the show, receiving updates periodically to let us know that Mollie was gradually doing a little better. After the show, I call him to find out what was going on. "Mollie's fine, Mom. She's been trying to tip over the garbage cans here looking for a snack!" We drove to the vet hospital, not because I didn't believe him but to talk to the vet and see for myself how she was acting. Sure enough the stinker didn't want to have anything to do with us except for a couple of ear scratches. She was more interested in sniffing around for any morsel she could find.
I picked up Mollie this morning, expecting to have to take her back to the pet clinic. When I told the vet assistant who I was picking up, she burst out laughing and said, "Little Miss Mollie, the chocoholic, can go home!" The vet warned me there are some serious side effects we need to watch for in the next 24-48 hours but otherwise, "This little dog is quite the little trooper!" I was stunned. She was was wagging her tail, sniffing the air, and loving all the attention she was receiving.
When we got home, she ran up the stairs, skidded around the corner and headed for the pantry where the chocolate chips USED to be. You would think she would have learned her lesson! As for me, I'm still doing laundry, cleaning up doggy vomit and looking for everything we need to doggy proof.
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