Just months after his wife Beth passed away from throat cancer, Dog the Bounty Hunter is now facing health issues of his own. Dog, also known as Duane Chapman, was rushed to the hospital this month after suffering what was described as a "heart emergency." Chapman underwent numerous tests while at the hospital, but his reps never confirmed what the issue was.
"I can confirm Dog is under doctor's care and is resting comfortably. Thank you for all of your well wishes - keep 'em coming," was the only thing released by Chapman's team.
Now, however, it's been revealed that Chapman is suffering from a pulmonary embolism in his heart, which means that one or more of his arteries is being blocked by blood. The condition is considered life threatening. The 66-year-old TV star was on The Dr. Oz Show when he learned of his condition.
“You’re a ticking time bomb,” Dr. Oz said in a clip from the show. “You’re not going to be here with the heart the way it is right now. Fear of death is normal. I’m surprised you don’t fear death when you’re chasing after convicts. But when you run away from doctor, that means you have to do your own doctoring.”
According to Oz, Chapman was "denying care that he knew would be life-saving.
“[Duane] was fearful,” he revealed to PEOPLE. “Beth had been his north star. She was the one that would go with him and keep him balanced so he could deal with these things. Losing her took away his biggest support.”
“I said, ‘What would Beth do,’ ” Oz added. "‘What would she say to you? I don’t think she’d be happy with what you’re doing. You’re throwing away your life, you’re throwing away your ability to parent your kids. You have to man up.’ That’s what she would say.”
Even though he was wary about doctors and hospitals, Chapman knew that he didn't have another choice.
“I hesitated for a minute thinking, I don’t want to have to go through this again,” Dog told PEOPLE. “I don’t want to die right now. I’m not afraid to die anymore, but I really didn’t care for awhile if something would happen. I do care now.”
Now, Chapman is trying his best to treat this condition and get back to his normal self. He's on blood thinners, as well as eating well and trying to quit smoking.
“Once this goes away, I am 100 percent. I’ve had fears. The blood clot is not a normal thing but it happens a lot, but I’m going to be 100 percent. I’m encouraged by it,” he said.
I can't imaging how terrifying it must have been for Chapman to go through this so soon after his wife passed, but at least he is getting the help he needs and taking care of his health.