Saturday, December 31, 2016

Last Day of the Year

‘Tis may have been the season for family, friends, and loads of festivities and fun.  But 'tis also definitely not the best time to get sick, but it happened to me.  I knew it would.  When you work in the medical field, you're always aware of germs no matter where you are.  But when I'd announced just before Christmas at work while I bleached our table in the breakroom that I was doing all I could to avoid them, I think I became the target for all stray germs!  It was bound to happen.  In my lifetime, I have sprayed more than enough of my share of Lysol disinfectant - And I would be a financially wealthy woman if I had invested half of what I have used and spent on disinfecting products.  But again, as we all know, sometimes no matter what you do, getting sick just happens.
~Todd and Mo napping...together?~
Despite how I've felt, I still worked a couple of days and we had a really nice holiday.
~Eva's first Christmas tree~ 
Holidays of course include going out to dinner.
~Clyde's Willow Creek Farm~
~A cozy place to sit~
And I  managed a little bit of baking.
~Cinnamon Rolls, a holiday tradition and favorite~
Last evening my brother left to go home.  All is calm as we end the holiday.  We are all worn out from the late nights.  And aside from a really ugly cough, I'm feeling much better.
And we look forward to the next year.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Stick a Fork in Me....I'm Done!

~Foster Kitty, Mo~
Well, I'm not really done done, but as done as I'm going to get for now.  I somehow ran out of holiday cards, and time, and Christmas Eve as we all know is practically here.  And I have yet to get all my packages mailed, but my new goal is to get that done in the coming week.  Maybe.  Usually I am more than ready for it by the time Christmas gets here.  Usually I’ve prepared menus, done some baking, completed all the shopping, and even watched a Christmas movie or two.  Usually.  But not this year.

My lack of preparedness doesn’t change that I have been looking forward to all things Christmas this month. But life has happened and it didn't stop it all from coming.
We are currently doing some tests with Bo, and waiting for the result of yet another one that he had on Thursday.  When he gets the "clear" from both the rescue and the vet, and with their approval, we've decided to adopt Bo. From the moment I was told about Bo and met him I felt like he was supposed to be with us. That feeling doesn't happen all that often, but when it does, you really shouldn't ignore it.  
Taken to the vet this afternoon was the lovely "Eevah" and Max who were both given the "all clear" and are scheduled for their surgeries in early January.
~Eevah and Max worn out from the vet visit~
The day ended sitting in a long line of traffic at the airport.  We have company for the holidays.
I am quite sure that my brother is totally okay if Christmas is a little less than Pinterest-perfect. And I know for sure Todd is too.  He's got an early Christmas present to play with. A brand new red ball.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Ready or Not!

Here it is December 17th, and I am so far behind - Faster than Todd, Christmas is coming, ready or not.  And I am really not ready.
I keep having to remind myself  to not stress over how much needs to get done.  But it's hard not to be that way.  This past week has been an unusually busy one, and it's not all because of Christmas.
Our little foster kitty, Lucille had her final surgery this past week to remove the pins in her leg.  Two final weeks of confinement for her. When her staples are removed, she'll be allowed to be a cat again.
Off to the vet on another day with Bo.  He's not been feeling well.  At least I think that he hasn't. He is so hard to read.  But he has no energy and is sleeping through practically everything. Blood tests show nothing to be concerned about, so a few other tests may be on the agenda for him.
Finally there's Jake.  We are at 318 days since he left the shelter.  Today he's struggling to stay standing and walk, and I'm not sure why.  I've added another pain medication in hopes that the soreness that he has in his front leg will ease and he'll be fine.  If not, a vet trip will be on the agenda for him too.
I did get the approval this week from the rescue for Max's second knee surgery.  I'll schedule that on Monday with the date of after the holidays in mind. The lovely Eevah is scheduled for her spay surgery at the start of the year, so she and Max can recover together.  I did hear from Retired Lady this past week asking how she was doing.  Retired Lady has heard nothing whatsoever from the kennel where she got her, and she has not followed through with the complaints that she was going to file against them.  I still feel the need to be cautious.
But I'm also feeling a bit of a relief that maybe "E's" past is behind her, as we look ahead to Christmas.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Lights Out!

It was about 2:30 in the morning, and Sunny woke me up shaking his head and the sound of his collar tags clinking together.  He came and sat next to the bed for a few minutes, and I gave him a few pats, rubbed his ears and drifted back to sleep.  I was awake a little later from the same thing. Poor Sunny.  Ear problems seem to be a bit of a problem at our house right now, and as I listened to Sunny continue to shake his head, I hoped he'd stop and I wouldn't have to get out of a warm bed.
~Sunny in October~
Sunny somehow knew I was awake and came back to the side of the bed and I gave him a few more pats, whispered to him that I loved him and then told him to lay down and go back to bed.  He left my side, but didn't go to bed, instead he continued to shake his head.  It didn't matter that it was (now) 3-something in the morning, I knew I needed to do something, or we both wouldn't get any sleep.  And I knew I should clean and medicate the ear that was bothering him. So, I got up.
In our house, no matter what time of the day or night, when I get up, I am followed by the "Pup-A-Razzi" who on this night was Todd, Charlie, Max, the lovely "Eevah" and I let them all outside.  It took a few minutes to find the bottle of ear cleaner, the medication, get the dogs back inside (no treats) and get the gauze I'd just gotten from work out of my car.

Finally it was back to the bedroom to clean Sunny's ears.  And there he was, fast asleep. I had to grin at that, and I did think about waking him up.  Instead I just turned the light out and went back to bed.  He'd wake me up again if he needed me, but he didn't.    
~A relaxed Sunny in October~

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Why Spoil the Fun?

An early start to our Saturday as Todd sat without a worry.
I was a little worried as Carl reached out to change the light bulb on our barn.
That job safely done I was off to drop Todd and Charlie off at the groomers for their winter haircuts.  Afterwards I'd planned a day of Christmas shopping.
About an hour later after barely arriving at my first stop, my phone rang.  It was the groomer who I'd not seen when I dropped the boys off.  In her thick Romanian accent she explained that her husband had recently had surgery and had been released a bit too soon from the hospital - She wanted to close the shop for the day, so could I come and pick up Todd and Charlie right away?

Of course I said I'd come and I was met by a very grateful and apologetic groomer, a seemingly confused Charlie and an ecstatic Todd,  His enthusiasm continued and I've a feeling Todd thought he'd hit the jackpot because he got out of being groomed, and a new rope-toy.
Why spoil his fun and tell him that he's going back next Saturday?

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Mid-Week Ramblings

My day off switched this week to today.  Its been a quiet uneventful one spent at home watching it rain, and not doing much.

Here are a few random things from our week so far...

It has been exactly 301 days since our boy Jake came to us.  I'm not sure why I've kept track of how many days it has been since we met him. I guess it's knowing how close he came to not making it out of the shelter in February.  I will always be grateful to the shelter for asking his owner to give him that chance, and to the rescue for being there for him.  Jake continues to do well and there's no doubt that he's happy.  The spinal-stenosis is progressing, but it's not slowing him down too much.
~Jake, celebrating 301 days!~
I've decided that if there were a TV reality show about animals that hoard, the lovely Evah would be the star. She takes *every *single *toy we have into the ex-pen with her. We take them out, scatter them around, and she takes them back in.  I've told her it was okay, because now we know where to find them.
~Evah, making no excuses for taking all the toys~
I've been in touch with Lab Rescue about our foster boy Bo. With his health problems mostly resolved, it's time to decide about who will be his forever home.  We are really on the fence with Bo and definitely leaning towards keeping him. His adjustment to his surroundings and our house has taken some time. Bo doesn't have a lot of confidence in himself and I've no doubt this is probably because of how he lived before he came to us. I describe him as aloof, a bit of a loner and he spends a lot of time alone and is a little disconnected with what is happening around him -- I'm sure that living in unimaginable circumstances with 40 other dogs has contributed to all that. I don't think that Bo has adjusted to his blindness like other blind dogs we've had before him.  We've spent a lot of time leading him around the house and yard and showing him how to get back to the door. Despite our doing that, he's still getting "lost."  But he's much-much better than he was.
~Bo made me laugh when he got comfy on a cat bed yesterday~
On the flip side, there's the endearing side of Bo that grabs my heart.  He is a gentle soul.  He perks up and will stand and wag his tail when he hears our voices. He loves attention and of course mealtime and treats.  Bo gets along great with the other dogs, and they like him too.  We've decided to roll the dice, let fate decide and see if anyone comes forward that's interested in adopting him.  I told Lab Rescue that we'll give it until about the middle of December, so Bo will have a forever family in time for Christmas.
Christmas...  It will be here before we all know it, and I think Todd can't believe it either.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Other Characters

The weekend is coming to an end.  It has gone way too quickly.  As always, I had plans to get more done than I actually did.  There's always next week, right?
Our new arrival Evah, may have taken center stage, but there has still been plenty going on with our other cast of characters. And while I've been caring for those characters inside, the main-character in our house Todd is taking care of what's going on outside.  What would be do without him?
Max returned for his final evaluation with the orthopedic surgeon.  He was happy with how Max has healed, and he was given the all clear on his left knee. His right knee as expected will also need surgery.  There is no reason to think that the rescue won't approve it being done, but it's going to have to wait.
Max has got a pretty ugly ear infection going on right now, and to avoid any cross contamination, he'll have to wait until it's all cleared up.  Max is okay with waiting
~Max has been doing a lot of head-shaking with this ear infection~
Also at the vet was our foster boy for Lab Rescue, Bo.  You'll recall that his previous career was similar to the one that Evah had.  Suffice it to say, that his "procedure" now means that his puppy-making days are over too.
The cats also couldn't be ignored.  We had our other little foster girl, Lucille at the vet too.  The same orthopedic surgeon that sees Max, sees her as well.  She's been given a good report and is healing well.  But Lucille still has "six more weeks of winter" before she is allowed to resume the life of an active and acrobatic cat.
Todd is just glad that none of this is happening to him.  At least he hopes it won't.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Better Days Ahead for Evah!

Another blur of a week for us.  I'm sure many of you are like me and are enjoying the Thanksgiving break as much as I am.  The only thing we have planned is dinner with good friends and their family today (Thursday) and spending some time at home.

Thank-you all for your kind words and supportive comments for our newest arrival Evah. One comment that Stoermann Home left and deleted, was one I really thought was a good and valid thought about Evah's care that asked about her staying with Retired Lady, Stoermann Home said:
 "isn't there a program out there that helps the elderly keep their companion dogs when they get financially difficult to keep? I mean, its great that you got the dog, but what if SHE kept the dog and didn't have to bear the cost of the unexpected medical issues."  
The answer to that question is yes there are vets offices that provide routine care to senior pet owners at a reduced fee or for no charge.  Understandably it's also up to individual practices to decide what discounted services they'll provide beyond that. The vet care that Evah needed by Thursday was more than Retired Lady was able and willing to pay, and my vets office and any nearby were willing to provide at no cost to her.
It all began when Retired Lady got Evah on Saturday afternoon.  From that time until Tuesday when she was first taken to see the vet, Evah had not relieved herself. The vet emptied her very full bladder, but did nothing about her bowels.  Retired Lady wasn't charged for other palliative care and they were hoping Evah would be okay. But by Thursday, no matter how many times she was taken outside, Evah would do nothing but try to go back inside because she was afraid of the noise made by passing cars. By Thursday Evah was (understandably) beginning to not feel well and hadn't eaten.  When I got Evah home I'd hoped that letting her off lead in our big yard, with no cars around would do the trick.  It didn't, and she even became sick overnight.  On Friday morning I dropped Evah off at the vets office and she received all the needed treatment including blood work and a few other tests.  Twelve hours later I was picked up an exhausted Evah who was feeling much better.
~Evah last Saturday, showing off her post-puppy figure~
Caring for the other dogs (in my next post) and getting Evah all settled in has taken us to a week later. Evah has ended her first week with us on a good note and with everything (now) working like clock-work. A needed antibiotic has kicked in, and that has helped as well.

Evah is just as lovely on the inside as she is on the outside.  She gets along really well with all the dogs, and is also learning about cats.  In true Golden Retriever fashion she takes everything in stride, loves her meals and happily takes treats.  If we're having any problems with her, it's that she is very nervous about exploring the house. I've tried to introduce her to other rooms but she gets nervous and wants to go back to the ex-pen where she feels safe. I'm sure in time that will change as she gets more confidence.
I decided to sign over my ownership of Evah to the rescue.  This was in part in the event that there are unforeseen repercussions between the kennel and Retired Lady no longer having her. I think that there being another link between Evah and where she originally came from is best for her.  And the Rescue as Evah's owner are in a better position to stand up against the kennel that she came from.
I think we'd all agree that Evah should only go forward to a new life and not back to her old one.