A Life in the Slow Lane

Mabel goes to Hospital

It was as quiet as the grave as we slept through the night in the shadow of the Roman mine workings. It might have had something to do with the fact that the rough piece of ground upon which we were parked was adjacent to the village’s cemetery.

Before we left England Mabel had been to see the vet because she was scratching incessantly, which had caused her to graze her own cheek and make her stomach very raw. The vet thought it was an allergy and prescribed a drug to suppress the scratching and an antibiotic to treat the infected wound on her cheek.

These drugs ran out five days ago and Mabel has started scratching again to such an extent that she once again has a badly scratched cheek. Sarah and I decided she needed to see a vet and so I searched for vets at our next destination, Lugo, and opted to telephone the University Veterinary Hospital simply on the basis that they may have more English speakers.

The receptionist did not speak English but my Spanish was up to asking if they had any English speakers and soon one appeared on the phone and we agreed to take Mabel in as soon as we had arrived in Lugo.

After a one and a half hour drive we pulled into a car park next to a very smart modern building and took Mabel and Melek in. The receptionist was expecting us and soon a very nice English speaking vet arrived and took us to a consulting room. Mabel then had the most thorough examination any dog could ever possibly have had. She was examined by a vet, six student vets and a Professor of Veterinary Dermatology!

Mabel’s Spanish medical file. They have her down as a cocker spaniel – she’s most upset about this.

They prodded her, poked her and took various skin samples away on slides to be examined. There conclusion was that she had a bacterial skin infection which needed a much longer course of antibiotics. They think that once the infection is under control the scratching will stop, but until then she will have to wear the dreaded cone of shame. We were in the hospital for nearly and hour and the total bill was just over €60, which wasn’t bad, although medication will be extra because we have to pick that up from a pharmacy.

Waiting between examinations

While we were waiting we had the opportunity to talk to a couple of the students, one of whom wants to come to England to work as a vet. Veterinary Science is also a very difficult subject to study in Spain and Lugo is only one of eight Universities in Spain to teach the subject.

With Mabel’s ordeal over we are now sitting in our latest free aire (43.004180, -7.561612) waiting for Spain to open later this afternoon. It will be another late afternoon/early evening visit to the city, which seems to be the pattern which works best in the heat of Spain.