Saturday, September 20, 2008

Campfire Tales

I had an overnight guest from Vancouver Island staying here last night and my friend Ellen was also here with her whippets, Cisco and Kinley, for our usual Friday night beer and dinner. We decided to light a campfire in the regulation pit (for which I finally got around to getting a permit!) and we spent the evening sitting around the fire with the dogs and our drinks, telling stories of the animals (my guest is a cat rescuer) and sharing some laughs. It was a great way to spend a Friday evening.

Most of the dogs were more interested in the food we were eating than sitting nicely in a circle around the fire for a photo op (and of course, I didn't want any of the dogs to get too close to the pit). Oliver and Kinley thought the camera might be edible, though, so they both got their pictures taken:

Oliver thinks we should make S'mores!

Kinley was more interested in BBQ ribs and fries

In other news, Oliver had his meet-and-greet-and-check-me-out with my vet yesterday. After the appropriate reactions of "Isn't he lovely" and "Oh! What a beautiful dog!" and "What a sweet boy!" from staff and clients in the waiting room, we got down to business. He was as good as gold while they drained half his blood (Oliver, you exaggerate!!! ) for his geriatric panel so we can get some baselines on his liver and kidney functions, white cell count, thyroid and so on. He was very good while the vet checked his heart and lungs (which are in excellent shape) and examined him from head to toe. Surprisingly, he ran and hid at the little light that the vet uses to look in the eyes and flatly refused to cooperate with that test. That's okay, Oliver, we'll leave it for another time.

We did find two problem areas that we are going to fix: he has several badly abscessed teeth (including a very wiggly front tooth, and a big gap beside it where his others have dropped out - he looks like a six year old kid!) and others that need a good cleaning. Getting the dental done will also help with his - ahem - halitosis.

The other problem is at the other end: I knew he had a history of chronic anal gland problems, but these are also very badly infected, swollen and abscessed and leak fluid while he sleeps. After a lengthy discussion and a look at his records, we have decided to have the glands removed. Hopefully this will resolve the problem, though there is a slight risk that he may become fecal incontinent. We will cross that bridge if we come to it. Meanwhile he gets the canine version of sitz baths - hot compresses with epsom salts three times a day - and antibiotics while we wait for the results of the geri panel to make sure he is a good candidate for surgery. Fortunately both ends of Oliver can be done at the same time, and will be scheduled for a time when either Ellen or I can be with him for several days post-op.

Oh, and he is sooo funny with his compresses. He takes the word "sitz" very seriously - when I hold the warm wet cloth to his butt, he "sitz" firmly down on it!!! Funny boy!!

And one last tale - this one for Charlie. Not Charley-the-dog, but my friend Charlie-the-man who I have known for - ummmm - too many years to count. Charlie-the-man came for a visit last Christmas and was constantly freezing in my house. Okay, yes, I keep my house very cool and anyone who comes to visit me and is NOT a menopausal woman with hot flashes better bring a warm sweater with them. But Charlie-the-man would have laughed at what I saw when I arrived home from work on Thursday.

It appears that Charley-the-dog absolutely agrees this house is much too cold. This is what I saw - all of her own doing. That blanket is supposed to be for her to sleep ON, not UNDER!! I still can't figure out how she managed to wrap it around herself like that .

So Charlie-the-man, these are for you:

And both Charlie-the-man and Charley-the-dog will be pleased to know I have someone coming to fix the natural gas fireplace on October 6th. It only took me two and a half years to make the appointment. :)


Anonymous said...

Hey Charley-the-dog,

Ahemmmm... I seem to remember you snickering at my whippet winter coat... Hahahaaaa Granny!!!!!

Sir K.

Anonymous said...

Aha so that is the fire I was told about. Looks lovely and WARM. Right Charley (the dog) and Kinley.

PS Charley said to thank you for getting the fire place fixed.
She dog mailed Archie and asked me to pass it along.LOL