This morning I was sharply reminded of how difficult life on your own can be. Ross was injured while playing out in the yard right before I was to leave for work. He was bleeding a fair bit, and I couldn’t immediately tell the extent of his injury. I brought him in the house and checked him over, and gave him some homeopathic arnica. The bleeding stopped almost immediately and once I cleaned him up it did not start up again. My assessment was that he was going to be ok and did not need to see a vet, but I was not comfortable leaving him unattended in case I was wrong. I called into work and told them I needed to stay home for the morning.
I spent the morning catching up on some housework and a few odds and ends, keeping a close eye on Ross. He was quiet but seemed totally fine. He ate his breakfast, followed me around the house, chased the cat, flirted with Kestrel, and instantly showed up in the kitchen when I opened a package of cheese. If I hadn’t seen the blood earlier, I would not have even considered there might be anything wrong with him. Needing the money and knowing how busy things are at work right now, I decided to go in for the afternoon. I left the dogs with peanut butter kongs and headed out.
Despite my head telling me very clearly that Ross was fine, my heart was very shaken. I couldn’t help but worry that perhaps I’d assessed things incorrectly. Should I have taken him to the vet? No, I was pretty sure that wasn’t necessary. But I started second guessing my decision to leave him home alone. If he had started getting worse (even though I watched him for nearly 4 hours with no sign of any problem), he would have no way of letting me know. No one was at the house and I don’t have any neighbours I could call to have check in on him throughout the day. I work one hour from home and by the time I was driving back at 7pm at night, I was on the verge of throwing up I was so worried about him. Why, oh why, did I leave my poor boy alone?
When I got back to the house I jumped out of the car and started whistling as loudly as I could. True to form, the dogs started barking from within the house. Mira? check. Hannah? Yep, that was her howling. The gruff bark? Kestrel. But where was Ross’s voice? I whistled again, and again, all the while fumbling in the dark with my keys. Then, to my immense relief, I heard Ross. I almost burst into tears.
I opened the door and ran up to my room and allowed the dogs to jump all over me in greeting. I gave them each a hug, especially Ross. He was full of beans and wanting to go and play. He was totally, 100% fine and was looking at me like I was nuts as I hugged the daylights out of him.
I have quite a bit of experience assessing injuries and illness in animals and I knew in my head that I had made the correct assessment of Ross’s situation. If I had thought for one second that he was in any danger, I would have never gone into work and taken him straight to the vet. But once away from home, my imagination got the better of me. And since I had no one to support me, no one I could ask to just peek in on him, I let my paranoia take over. I really need to establish a better support system around here. I’ve never had to work so far from home before and I am liking it less and less every day. I will definitely make a change for next year. Maybe I could look into getting a video cam in the meantime! Fortunately I only have 1.5 weeks of work left before I go on Christmas break. That will mean a good 6 weeks of working strictly from home. I can’t wait!