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>Puppies can have vaccine reactions, too

November 12, 2010

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Daisy loves children’s Benadryl. Cherry flavored, believe it or not.

This is a story for the Mommy Files, which have grown rather dusty since Dorothy moved to Colorado. The Mommy Files are the repository of folk-wisdom, one mom (actually several) to another: what a febrile seizure looks like; when a cut needs a trip the the ER for stitches vs. a butterfly bandage or two; how to get foreign objects out of small noses vs. when to visit the ENT. In the early days, before we had kids (fifteen children ago) we accumulated facts about cloth diapering (I think we had gotten over that by child number three) and psychoses in cats.

Wednesday morning, Daisy had her three month well-puppy check at the vet. The appointment ended with two standard vaccines, including her first one for Lyme disease. After we came home, Faith took her outside. When she came in, Faith said, “Mom. I think we got shampoo in Daisy’s eye last night. It is all purple and puffy and she’s scratching at it.”

I’m more of a wait-and-see mom. But the other eye was starting to swell and she was beginning to sneeze. We took Daisy straight back to the vet. By the time we got there (about 45 minutes after the injection) her eyes were half-swollen shut and weepy and her nose and lips were puffed up. The vet gave her an injection of Benadryl and kept her for five hours to see if she would need steroids, too.

Then they sent her home with instructions to give her children’s Benadryl orally. I said, “Really? Ours is cherry or bubblegum flavor –something pink. Will she actually take it?” They advised me to try it and gave me the tiniest syringe I’ve ever seen. (When you only weigh 3.5 lbs., it doesn’t take much.) Daisy loves cherry Benadryl. Who would have guessed?

As for the next vaccine: I’m told they will give her an injection of Benadryl before the vaccine, and keep the steroids handy while they observe her afterward because her second reaction could be worse. But still not as bad, they assure me, as getting Lyme disease.

Almost all better.
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