Several doctors took turns examining my eighteen-month-old son’s hives, which were spreading even then from his face, neck, and torso, down his arms and finally his legs. But none could say whether the culprit was the recently prescribed Amoxicillin, which Conrad had been taking for five days by then to treat an ear infection, or the three large strawberries his grandmother had put into his smoothie that afternoon.
Given that both the prescription and the strawberry smoothie represent first-time exposures (at least as far as any of us could recall), and that each is plenty capable of triggering precisely this sort of allergic reaction in the timeframe allowed, who’s to say?
Believe it or not, Conrad did not seem particularly bothered by the rash, startling as was its appearance. In any case, we’ve discontinued the antibiotics and the berries for now, and made an appointment to see an allergist for testing.
Beside losing my husband and me a little sleep, these events reminded me of why it’s useful to take a disciplined, methodical approach toward building skills or building tolerance in a dog.
Carelessly changing too many variables at once, whether out of aimlessness or haste, or simply because one has failed to keep track of steps already taken, may put a trainer in the same spot in which we found ourselves while peering into the crib in the middle of the night: wondering which of mutiple factors was more likely to blame for the problem at hand.
© Ruth Crisler and Spot Check, 2010.