Saturday, April 12, 2014

Gozer gets shots

Allergy shots, that is.

Gozer finally had her first allergy shot today, and I'm the one who gave it to her! We'd tried to start the shots a couple of weeks ago but then the vet was going to be away and he wanted to be there to oversee Gozer, so we delayed until This past Thursday, which is when the vet recommended that we start. 

But then when I put the schedule into the calendar I noticed that her weekly maintenance shots would be on Sundays and that's just not convenient for Ian's parents (who will be looking after Gozer when we're away) or for us if we needed a vet to do it. I asked the vet if we could shift the maintenance injections to the next day and the vet said no, so I rescheduled the first appointment for Saturday.

The vet was pretty upset with me for changing the appointment focus on Thursday but it worked out well anyways, I think. I was able to spend time learning how to give the injections with saline which I wouldn't have been able to do otherwise. It turns out that giving this kind of injection is really easy once you're shown how to do it. The first time I tried with saline, with the vet there, I completely messed it up because she didn't tell me how to hold the syringe or anything.  Once the technician went through it step-by-step I had a much easier time.

Gozer doesn't seem to have any adverse effects from the allergy shot. Interestingly, there are apparently two approaches to allergy shots: front-loading and ramping-up. In the front-loading approach, the injections start with high doses of the serum and then taper down and the ramping-up approach starts low and builds. Well, the vet thought that we were getting a front-loading type and that Gozer would need more supervision after the first couple of injections instead of the kind we're getting. Had they checked the email I sent with the dermatologist's information, they'd have known this and we wouldn't have had to wait two weeks to start the injections. Not that it matters in the long run that we waited two weeks to start the injections; when you're doing something for a lifetime, starting two weeks here or there doesn't make much of a difference.

Hopefully the next injections will go just as well and they'll help. Gozer has been panting more often as we've been walking out in the new spring weather. It isn't hot out - maybe 17C, max - so I figure maybe she's having trouble with the molds and stuff that are being uncovered once (almost) all the snow melted.

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