The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Vaccinations key, keep pets healthy

Procrastination is an ugly word and an even more unattractive personality flaw that sometimes  carries a hefty price.

For the first time since becoming a parent to my little four-legged friends, I had an extremely nutty lapse in judgment.

Isabel, my Labrador mix, was due for her annual shots in mid-December. I tossed the reminder postcard on the kitchen counter with the mounds of several previous days’ mail. Finals were the focus at the time and, of course, Christmas and New Year’s. Before long, school was starting again.

The reminder completely slipped my mind — until a few days ago. The realization that I had ignored a procedure necessary to my dog’s health made me sick at my stomach. Sitting in the emergency room awaiting treatment for a dog bite compounded this realization.

Fortunately, the bite wasn’t from Isabel. It was from Lylah, my mother’s boxer mix that had been in my home since October. The two dogs often play rough with ferocious growling, visible incisors. So when the two were seemingly play fussing with one another, reaching down to grab Isabel’s collar didn’t seem moronic until Lylah turned and went for the kill.

After a rather savage one-minute dogfight, the three of us rolled around on the kitchen floor while I tried to reason with two dogs, and I thought I was the rational one.

The results? After a five-hour emergency room visit, a tetanus shot and five stitches in the middle finger, I was required to provide the nurse with the addresses of both animals. This was not a veterinarian’s nurse. This was the nurse in a very human emergency room who needed to report the incident to Animal Control.

The nurse said the dog that bit me would likely be quarantined, and both dogs could be detained for 10 days. If a rabies test proved positive, the animal would be euthanized immediately. And never mind the $500 fine for not vaccinating a pet.

So the tip of the day: Vaccinate all pets — inside and outside. Don’t procrastinate. Unexpected events can occur, ultimately resulting in the death of your little sunshine.

And never, ever put yourself in the middle of two growling dogs.

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