Saturday, June 28, 2014

The Value of a Dog Named Gus

Another exhaustive week is coming to an end.  On Monday what I thought was an infected hot-spot on Gus's back leg, turned out to be an infected pressure sore (or bed-sore) instead. I will begin by saying that it's very rare that I can't see one of my two favorite vets.  But since Gus couldn't wait until one of them could, I decided to take him to the vet that treated CarrieAnne for the lump on her neck. He'd taken such good care of Carrie, and in similar circumstances I've taken our other dogs to see him.  "Dr. X" is, in my opinion a very good and thorough vet, with confidence and experience and I respect and trust his professional judgement.  It ends there.  And I will begin by saying that I know that Gus has many health concerns, some of which will never be resolved and I know that his time with us is limited.  Which is partly why I left the office feeling discouraged and without much hope that was triggered because of what I felt was Dr. X's "attitude" towards Gus.  When those clouds cleared, I remembered why it was that I preferred not to take my senior dogs to him.  Dr. X, in my opinion, (I may be wrong) does not see the "worth" of a dog like Gus. All week long I've struggled with caring for Gus's infected, open wound, feeling that he (Dr. X) could have and should have done more to help Gus. All week long I struggled because I wanted to prove to him that Gus would indeed live to see the start of next week. All week long I kept seeing the value in trying to help a dog like Gus. But by Friday, I felt like I may be losing that battle and I knew Gus needed to be seen again.  I was relieved when Cissy and Cricket's vet could see him.  There is no doubt that Dr. C sees what I see in a dog like Gus.  It truly showed in how she interacted with Gus and how she patiently listened to my thoughts and concerns.  She has come up with a good, workable treatment plan that I feel is going to help the sore to heal, which I will tell you more about later.
Finally, I just have to tell you that in the rush of my week I didn't need yet another proverbial wrench thrown into it. But as you well know, you don't always get that choice.  I will spare you the details of why and how it happened, and just tell you that I tripped going down the steps at my office on Thursday and I have fractured my ankle. It's now a beautiful color of purple with no sign of an ankle bone and there is something that vaguely resembles the foot and toes I've known my whole life. Thankfully I can put some weight onto it, but the doctor told me to stay off of it as much as possible.  I do enjoy a doctor with a good sense of humor! The way it looks right now, these chairs on my porch are going to remain empty for awhile.
But I do hope you are able to relax and enjoy your weekend!     


  1. Hello Kim, I so glad Gus got a chance to see the other doc.. I am so sorry that you hurt your foot, I hope it heals quickly.. Gus is adorable, love the lighting on the rocker and the butterfly is gorgeous.. I wish you a happy weekend!

  2. Oh my goodness...well, you and Gus will convalesce together. I hope you heal quickly; be careful; and look forward to hearing the plan of action for Gus. What a sweetheart. You too!

  3. oh, no! i am so sorry for the ankle! you surely can't work until it heals! good luck with gus!

  4. oh how i wish i had money.
    i would set you up for life. you'd never have to go to that office again.
    bless you dear heart. bless you.
    as if you never have enough on your plate. now this.
    surely carl will take as good care of you as you took of him after the barn fall.
    love and hugs. and white light around you and gus and carrie anne and all at golden pines! xoxo♥

  5. Forget Dr. X. I have my own Dr. C (Cohen) who appreciates me and the bond I have with my peeps. Tell the good vets about your experience and they might know a vet who feels like they do. I wouldn't trust Dr. X anymore. The medical profession has a conflict of interest. On one paw the Dr. is running a business. On the other paw, the Dr. is telling you what you need from the services that business provides. You need a vet you can trust. Take the ankle to Dr. C! Yeah, I know you can't but all that I've said works for vets for humans also. Get better quickly.

  6. Sometimes, I think we came from the same shelf - different bag of beans, but a similar rip in the bag from the shelf.
    I hope you have a walking cast on so you can get around. Vets... they all have different views, don't they? I do miss our old one. Gus is a sweetheart, such a lovable face!
    Steady as she goes now, take care of the ankle.

  7. Ouch for poor Gus and poor you!

    Sending Get Well Soon wishes to you both.

    ps dear Kim, thank you so much for your kind words on my blog following the loss of our sweet Rosie Mae. I want you to know that I REALLY appreciated your thoughtful comments. I am missing her more than words can say (it's 2 weeks today that she went) and I hope the pain subsides soon because it's pretty hard to cope with. xxxxxx

  8. I'm so glad you were able to get in with your regular vet and hopefully Gus will be doing better soon. It's so sad that a vet behaves that way toward an older dog. Should we treat our human senior citizens that way because they're older? It makes me angry! Gus is lucky to have you as his advocate. I hope your ankle heals quickly. Having recently broken my foot I know how hard it is to try to stay off of it when you have things to do! Take care!

  9. Kim, I'm sure with Dr C, and your TLC, Gus will be soon recovering well, and your ankle, maybe too hard to rest up much at all, can anyone fetch and carry in your doggie family?? Hope all things improve very soon, and maybe Dr X has issues we don't know about. No matter how old, how many problems, each of us should get treated so fairly. Hugs to all, Jean.

  10. OUCH ! Hope your ankle gets better fast . Some Vets have no compassion and shouldn't work with animals, much like our human DR's I have met up with ! I hope all get well soon . Lovely photos ! Have a good weekend !

  11. Poor Gus...hope he will from me....Ria...x !

  12. Fractured ! Ouch !! Sending wishes for a speedy recovery.

    The value of a caring vet is greater than diamonds. We had a vet in Scotland who shouted at our first pair of PON's and went round as if he loathed animals. On our journey we have been blessed by having a great vet in Italy and doubly blessed by having two wonderful vets here.

  13. Bummer about the ankle.

    Our Vets tend to be large animal doctors, so they're not too concerned with small pets, or OLD pets. However, they usually have the younger, newer vets who are sympathetic. Just remember for next time.

    XXXOOO Bella roxy & Dui

  14. Well I'm grateful you have a couple of vets that are trustworthy and want what's best for the dogs. Just like people doctors - it's so hard to find good ones!! I'm so sorry about your ankle. Yikes! Hugs to you and hope you and Gus are feeling better soon. :) I have to share with you because I know you'll appreciate it, as I type cat/dog Jack is leaping through the air after a fly, running into every single piece of furniture without care as he tries his hardest to catch that elusive little thing. Too funny. Happy Saturday!

  15. I like our vet too, just because she loves our dogs like we love them. :)

    I hope your foot heals quickly.

    Monty and Harlow

  16. Look after yourself old gal x

  17. Glad you got Gus to your preferred vet, I don't like the sound of that Dr. X's attitude either. Wishing Gus all the best with his healing and good vibes coming his way.

    Talking of good vibes...I'm sending some for your ankle and hope you aren't in too much discomfort. Have a great weekend yourselves.

  18. SO happy that "Dr. C" was able to support you in Gus' care and outlook for his care. Seniors (human and animal) ARE important and have a right to be loved and cared for.
    Speaking of "caring" please take care of YOU!!! Hoping that ankle returns to health SOON.

  19. HUGS! I am so sorry about your ankle. I know that not only is it physically painful, but a hassle to maneuver life.
    Thank heavens Gus has you and Dr. C. It sounds like she is there to support you also. That is important to your psyche. Gus and all of your babies are important. Some of of us just need a little more TLC at different times.
    This story with Dr. X reminds me of the line from The Help that I tell my Gus all of the time: I is good. I is kind. and I is important. We all need to remember that about each of us and the ones we interact with in life.
    Gus' Mom

  20. Oh Kim..Now you and Gus can heal what the doctor and vet say because I see the value of a dog named Gus!!!!...:)JP

  21. Oh dear. That does sound like a rough week. I hope you and Gus can do some healing this week.


  22. Did one those fancy city squirrels run out in front of you making you fall? Let me at him I'll shred him to pieces!

    Paws crossed for Gus.

    Aroo to you,

  23. I know what you mean about a doctor that does not see the light with other animals. It almost seems like they are giving up without giving them a chance. I went through that with Roscoe when the vet that I did not really care for from the beginning when we first got Roscoe. I had him for 6 days when he started to have blood in his stools and did not want to play. Turns out he had Parvoe. But she was very blunt and said he would not make it past the night, but told us we owed 600 dollars just for being seen and having the test done. My husband did not care what it cost, just to save him. She said he would need a plasma tranfusion and that was another 450 dollars. After everything was said and done, 3 days later, we paid 1950 dollars to save him. Now she misdiagnosed him saying he showed cancer on his leg and that we needed to do a biopsy and if it was cancer he would have to have his leg amputated. Turns out he is fine. So I know how you feel with MR. C.
    Hope your ankle heels quickly. Ana

  24. I so totally understand your feeling about Dr. X. That's why I, like you, very very strongly prefer to see our favorite vet. She's seen us through the lives and deaths of several dogs, and I know that I trust all aspects of her judgement. I'm so glad that Gus has you and also has your favorite vet caring for him not (and I mean truly "caring").

    I saw a med school graduation speech recently in which the speaker said "Your patients won't care what you know until they know that you care about them". So very very true.

    I hope that you're giving your ankle a rest this weekend. Sending POTP to you and Gus.

  25. I have changed vets before when they simply did not seem to truly take an interest in one of our Rottweilers years ago. Hugs to Gus and to you as we'll. hope you heal quickly!

  26. So sorry about the ankle. Hope it heals soon.

    I know just what you mean about some vets and old dogs. Our Springers lived to the ages of 16 and 17. Our own wonderful vet appreciated them and was so kind. When we had to see another vet at the office, we were greeted with, "Well, she's an old dog..." Glad to hear you have a new treatment so at least you can be confident that all is being done for dear Gus that can be done.

  27. Very thankful that Gus has you. Prayers for you and a quick healing.

  28. Crikey ..... it never rains ... it pours, aye??? So sorry to hear about your poor ankle. That's no good at all. Love and prayers for you and Gus .....

  29. That was some week. I hope you have been using crutches. Imagine what would happen to Gus if you were not such a strong advocate. Hopefully you can get a handle on his sore now.

  30. Oh Kim, not a good week at all, hope your ankle feels better. Also sure hope Gus has a good recovery, love that face....would love to sit on a rocker on your beautiful porch, love the picture, Hugs Francine.

  31. First, hope you ankle heels quickly. You are the second person I know who has had a stair injury in the last week or so.

    I am sorry that Dr. X was not as compassionate with Gus as he should have been. It is sad that he can't see the value in Gus' life. Hugs.

  32. I did the broken ankle thing when I only had three dogs. It wasn't easy even then. Now I have a disease where the joints in my feet are disintegrating. I'm not supposed to be walking on them. Yeah right!

    I've been to vets who just think of a dog as a replaceable item. Didn't go back again. I value Dr B because he sees each of my dogs as an individual and values their well being. Not all vets are created equal.

  33. Oh Kim
    I wish we could hug you! You care so much about each of your furrys and we know you want the vets to care too.
    Thank goodness you were able to see the vet- who cares! We hope Gus gets to feeling better!
    And we hope your fractured ankle heals quickly. It may turn all the colors just like that beautiful butter fly.
    We send magic healing bubbles to all of you at Golden Pines.

  34. The clinic I work at has several vets but I go to the vet that knows how much my pets mean to me and how will do whatever it takes to save them. He never wants to accept defeat.
    Just like Doctors for people, I get upset how patients are treated according to their "worth". How dare someone decide who is worthy and who is not.
    I've seen animals brought in from shelters and rescues treated by some as less than an animal owned by a client. I don't understand why or how anyone could be so heartless. Sadly there are many people in professions that shouldn't be.
    I hope Gus continues to heal and I hope your ankle heals just as quickly.
    Take care of yourself!

  35. We're sorry to read about your broken ankle Kim - here's hoping it heals quickly.

    Gus is so fortunate to have you - hugs to him and hope he starts feeling better too.

    Nadine & goldens Neeli & Elle

  36. I am so proud of you for doing so much for Gus! Do what the Dr. says so your ankle heals as quickly as possible.

    Your story about the first Dr. to see Gus reminds me of a visit I had with an associate vet that I avoided seeing ... but Patty (cat) had to be seen and this Dr. was not to be avoided that day. Patty had cancer that we couldn't do anything about but make her comfortable and her time was limited. She also had an infection in her mouth that we COULD treat. The Dr. was snippy with me, apparently offended that I was bringing a terminally ill animal in for something something so seemingly minor. "Mrs. Hilker" the Dr. said, "You know that your cat has cancer, don't you?" I lost it. I leaned across the counter at her, my eyes narrowed and my jaw tightened, and explained in a low, quiet voice that I did, indeed, understand that Patty had cancer, which we couldn't fix. She also had an infection that we could fix, and I expected to be prescribed the required medicine to do so. The clinic owner (a wonderful vet) apologized to me for his associate's behavior. I hope you can find the words and the time to make the owner of the clinic where you go aware of your experience with the first visit with Gus.

  37. Oh no. So sorry to read about you ankle. I am glad that you found a vet to give you a treatment plan for Gus.

  38. Sorry to hear about your ankle that is going to slow you down a bit. I see in the photo Gus has his support harness on. D. M. has taken our Betty from us, it is a shame her cart would not fit Gus. We have decided on donating it to the Corgi rescue a worthy cause I am sure you will agree.

  39. Oh Kim, and I just got off my crutches after three weeks! Get that foot up and ice it girlfriend!
    Gus, sweet Gus! I see his value! Have you tried making a doughnut out of foam to relieve the pressure and spraying the area with Vetericyn?


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