Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Our brush with illness..

And that illness is... pyometra.

Pyometra, I've recently learned the hard way, is an infection of the uterus in unspayed females of generally middle age. Just like our little Field Gordon, Holly.
Holly is 5 1/2 years old, intact until just yesterday, and never bred. I had thoughts of a possible breeding early on, but various issues prevented my pursuing it. We had been warned about this disease of the reproductive tract on more than one occasion, But I chose to ignore it. I bear the responsibility for that, and I can assure folkks that today I have learned my lesson after having a 3.1 pound infected uterus removed from my girl yesterday afternoon in emergency surgery. My wife assisted in the surgery, and is the person most responsible for saving this little dog's life!
Holly finished up her heat cycle about three weeks ago, and almost immediately was not quite herself. But, most folks would not notice the subtle changes. I didn't recognize them myself, and hunted the dog for the last time of the season just last week. And she looked dynamite... Her old self, but little did I know of the danger lurking inside her body.
When she presented with heavy thirst and heavy urination just days ago, it was undeniable that something was wrong, and we did not waste any time getting her checked over by the Vet my wife works as a tech for. But, she made the call and the diagnosis, which was correct, I might add.
For all those with unspayed females at home, read the link on this sometimes deadly disease and pay heed to the warnings, and I'm here to tell everyone that pyometra is nothing to leave to chance. It can sneak in insidiously and take an animal's life in short order!
I hope that the Birddogdoc reads this post, and does a piece on his blog about this dreaded and deadly infection..

Click the picture to see the IV apparatus Holly was connected to last night, at home as we wished, after surgery..

Be careful out there!


  1. I hope she recovers well! Best wishes!

    The heavy thirst and urinating can be associated with ecoli bacteria if they have an actual infection vs cystic endometrial hyperplasia!

    I'll write an article for my website next week addressing pyo's!

    I hope for a speedy recovery!


  2. Bill: glad you found the cause of Holly's problems. Hope she's on her way to a full recovery.

    Shawn: you might throw in something on headcase vizslas and polydypsia to cover other heavy drinking/urination issues.

    all best

  3. Bill,
    Pyometra is something I don't remember every hearing about before but our females have always been spayed. So happy to hear you acted quickly and now Holly will recover. Good news!