Author Topic: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....  (Read 8597 times)

Offline bubbas-mama

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Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« on: July 30, 2007, 10:34:48 AM »
This past weekend, my husband and I traveled to South Dakota for a family reunion. We brought the bullies with us and kenneled them at a really nice kennel 1/2 mile from my parents farm. The kennel itself is constantly air conditioned at 74 degrees which was VERY important to us since the bulldogs can't handle the heat and the kennel itself looked very clean. The owners were very nice and after meeting them and seeing the place we were confidant the bulldogs would be well taken care of. We put Bentley and Millie in a 6 x 6 foot area together that was made of concrete so the floor was nice and cool for their tummies. The sides of the kennel were concrete  cinder blocks so they couldn't see dogs next to them. We dropped them off on Friday afternoon and decided to go visit them in the morning. It was very hard on us leaving them there since they have NEVER been kenneled before but felt "ok" after seeing where they were staying. The owners told us we could visit anytime we wanted over the weekend which made us feel better about leaving them there.

Saturday morning we went over to the kennel to visit them. It was about 73 degrees outside but the humidity was very thick in the air. When we got there, the owners had just taken them both out for a short walk and put them back into the kennel and fed/watered them. We went to their kennel and let them out and they both looked fine but were VERY excited to see us. They followed us outside and as soon as we got out there Bentley threw up a bunch of white phlegm. Immediately after, he sounded like he was wheezing and couldn't catch his breath. I asked the owner if he sounded like this after the walk and he said no. He said he was panting but nothing out of the ordinary. I asked the owners wife if they had any lemon juice - thinking he may have some phlegm caught in his airway and can't cough it up - so she ran and got some. While she was getting the lemon juice Bentley started to deteriorate. He was making a "whistling" sound as he was trying to breathe and he got a strange bewildered and wild look in his eyes. It was then that I started to panic. I knew something was seriously wrong with my boy! The kennel owner brought lemon juice and we used a syringe to squirt it into his mouth. 15 seconds later...nothing. He was still gasping for air. At this point I am beyond panicked and am fearing he is going to drop over dead from lack of oxygen to his brain and not being able to breathe. His eyes were blood shot red and his tongue was purple. Being a nurse, I knew this wasn't a good sign and that we had to react very quickly if were were going to save him. From the time we got him out of the kennel to the point of the lemon juice it was 5 minutes! After we gave the lemon juice, I realized there was nothing we could do to help him and we had to get him to a vet ASAP! We quickly got him into the truck and hauled ass to the vet. Thank god it was a small town and the vet was a couple miles away. The vet and staff are great friends of my parents so that was a plus for us being that we don't live there. Even though the vet was only a couple minutes away, it felt like hours sitting there with my Bubba listening to him struggle to breathe. His tongue became a horrible purplish/black color and I was sick to my stomach that we were going to lose him!

We got to the vet and I ran in to tell them what was happening as my husband got Bentley out of the truck. He brought Bentley in, laid him on the examining table, the vet ran in, listened to his lungs and throat and ran out and brought in a shot of Solu-Cortef (an anti-inflammatory steroid) which they gave in his neck. He then ran out again and brought in another shot which they injected in the vein which was a broncho-dilator and Atropine. He then took his temperature. A normal dogs temp should be around 101-102 degrees - well, when they took Bentley's temperature it was 107 degrees! As soon as the vet saw that, they immediately grabbed him and put him in a huge tub and started running the cold water. They filled the tub with ice packs and we proceeded to pour ice cold water all over Bentley to bring his temperature down. We were scared to death and thought for sure he was going to die! About 15 minutes into the cold bath water, his breathing slowed down and wasn't as labored and his tongue was pinking up. It took about an hour for his temperature to return to normal. I was concerned about sending him into "shock" by pouring such cold water over his hot body but the vet assured us that it was either this or he would die. After his temp returned to 101 degrees, we took him out of the tub, dried him with a towel and he was running around trying to give everyone kisses as if nothing had ever happened! I had tears in my eyes and at that moment, and realized the seriousness of what had just happened and the thought of almost losing him was too much to bear.

We took Bentley to my parents house and the vet instructed us to keep Bentley in a small, air-conditioned area with concrete or linoleum and a fan for the rest of the day with no excitement. We went back to the kennel to get Millie (our other bully) and the kennel owner felt horrible about what had happened. We assured them that it wasn't their fault and that bulldogs are just VERY heat-sensitive. Even though the temperature was only 73 degrees outside, the humidity was very thick. We saw the path they took to walk the dogs which wasn't even 1/2 the length of a city block. We think what might have happened is after his walk he was hot to begin with and after seeing us he got super excited and worked up and it set him over the edge because when we let him out of the kennel, he was panting but there was no sign of him struggling to breathe. Just goes to show you how fast heat stroke can set in for a bulldog!

For the rest of the day Saturday, he continued to sound like he was wheezing on and off when he would pant (which the vet assured us he might) but as of Sunday morning it was gone. He slept all the way home on Sunday back to Kansas City from SD and as of this morning he seems to be his normal self once again!

I'm sharing this story with you all in hopes that our own horrible and traumatic experience may help someone in the future with their own bulldog. Heat stroke is VERY serious in a bulldog and quick response and action by the owner is the difference in whether your bulldog lives or dies! My husband and I feel VERY guilty about what happened to Bentley and we would have never forgiven ourselves if we lost our precious boy! I know it could have happened to us if he were at home but being that it happened when he was out of our care makes us feel responsible. You know, noone can take care of your bully like you do, noone knows abnormal activity from your bully like you do and noone loves your bully like you do  ;)

Please remember that even though the temperature may seem "cool" outside (70-80 degrees) to you, if the humidity is high it could be a potential dangerous situation with your bully! Just the slightest bit of exertion in this scenario could throw your bulldog into heat exhaustion.

Here is a website that might be helpful in saving your bulldogs life if heat exhaustion were to set in to your bully:
http://www.bulldoginformation.com/bulldogs-heat-stroke.html

Thanks for hearing me out and sorry this was such a long read! If I can help just one person in the future, then it was well worth it! Here are a few pics of Bentley during the trip home yesterday. Ever seen a bully sleep sitting up? Check out the 2nd picture...he was like that for over an hour  :D
"There is no psychiatrist in the world like a bulldog licking your face."

Heather, Shane, Bentley & Millie

Offline Justine

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2007, 10:57:37 AM »
oh I am so sorry to hear about your weekend, that must have been awful!!!  :( :( :( :( :(

I am so glad that Bentley is doing well, thanks to your quick actions.  Thank you for sharing your story, which could well help someone else if it happens to them  :-* :-*

The photos are priceless, especially Bentley sitting up sleeping and the 2 of them snuggled together  :-* :-* :-* :-* :-*

May all your puppies be shiny, Justine & Jim -Always Wembley's people xxxxxxxxxxx

Offline Grace

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2007, 11:09:39 AM »
How scary that must have been for you and your husband. I'm glad that he is doing just fine now thanks to your quick actions. Those pictures are just priceless.  :-*  :-*  :-*

I wonder if it wouldn't be a bad idea for us bullie owners to carry around a thermometer in our bags of bullie supplies whenever we are out.

Grace
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R.I.P Godiva, King, Molly & Sarah  :(  I will never forget you!  :-*

Offline DwightsMom

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2007, 11:13:19 AM »
Oh! My! Gosh! I am so glad he's ok! Wow! How awful! Bullie point to you for posting this! Oh, and the pictures of them are so cute!

Offline brumzoo

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2007, 11:15:24 AM »
How scary! I am so happy that Bentley is OK!  :-* :-* :-* :-* :-* :-*

Thank you for writing this...it could help someone else in this situation. :)
Trish, Jeff, Lumpy & zoo! Until we meet again with Precious, Sapphy and Onnie.

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Offline tamifide

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2007, 11:27:05 AM »
Oh wow.  I'm so glad you were able to get Bentley to the vet in time and that he's ok!  What a terrifying experience. 

Offline buddha

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2007, 01:33:10 PM »
I'm so glad you were able to get Bentley to the vet in time!
Niki, Jeremy & Zeus
RIP my sweet Buddha

Offline Gracie & Bea's Mom

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2007, 02:24:28 PM »
Thank Heavens you went to visit Bentley when you did!  I am so glad he is okay and it serves to a warning for all of us about how humidity can affect our bullies. I am sure you, Bentley, Millie, and the kennel owners were scared to death.
Next time, leave the bullies with me! ;D
Mary, Gracie, and Bea

Offline Gracie & Bea's Mom

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2007, 02:26:45 PM »
Thank Heavens you went to visit Bentley when you did!  I am so glad he is okay and it serves to a warning for all of us about how humidity can affect our bullies. I am sure you, Bentley, Millie, and the kennel owners were scared to death.
Next time, leave the bullies with me! ;D
Mary, Gracie, and Bea

Offline Niccirf

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2007, 06:17:18 PM »
Holy cow - I would've FREAKED!!! Makes me want to stop b*tchin about the heat here in Denver (for while it's been in the high 90's, there is little to no humidity).

Kisses to sweet Bentley and Hugs to you guys for knowing when to get him help !!!
Nicole & Gus...

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Offline Maggpie

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2007, 07:14:40 PM »
HOLY COW :o :o :o  How scary :o :o :o  Thank goodness you got there when you did :o  I am so relieved that Bentley is ok.  Give him lots and lots of kisses from me :-* :-* :-* :-*

Offline Erica in FL

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2007, 07:27:56 PM »
What a smoosh face! LUB DA PICS! What an awful experience, I'm glad everything is ok now.  ;)
Each & Every Bully is a gift from GOD! Let us thank HIM everyday for the blessings He gives. RESCUE BULLIES ARE THE BEST!!

Offline khybeemaow

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2007, 11:57:14 PM »
By the time I got halfway through your post, my heart was beating so fast even though I knew by the title, the story had to have a good ending. You must have been out of your mind with worry seeing Bentley like that  :( Thanks for sharing that story  :)

Kisses to Bentley and ((hugs)) to you. What a way to end a weekend  :(

Offline brumzoo

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2008, 09:52:49 AM »
I am going to sticky this thread because it has great info in it and may help someone else.  :)
Trish, Jeff, Lumpy & zoo! Until we meet again with Precious, Sapphy and Onnie.

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Offline Melissab

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Re: Bentleys' "near-death" experience....
« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2008, 07:19:39 PM »
I'm so sorry this happened it must have been so scary.  Thank you for posting this I'll definatley remember this.