I must admit over the last three years I have truly become a doggy daddy. Our little Buddy has helped fill our house and make the empty nest syndrome seem not so empty. It has been an adjustment for Cathy and me dealing with the responsibilities of having a dog. The ritual of providing him with ample opportunity to “do his business” is definitely performed more by Cathy than I but I have definitely bagged my share of poop. I recently wrote about my knee replacement surgery and my extended rehabilitation period at home. Buddy was right by my side morning, noon and night and provided me with comfort and compassion. He made the pain seem less severe and made the day pass more quickly and he fulfilled the definition of man’s best friend. Cathy also does the bath routine more than and I and I think she actually enjoys the maternal aspect of caring for our pet. Taking Buddy to the groomer is also another challenging responsibility. In my opinion, the hardest responsibility is taking Buddy to the vet. As soon as we pull into the parking lot he senses “this is not good for Buddy” and starts to shake and is extremely reluctant about walking inside. Recently one of those vet excursions involved an operation to remove a growth from his back. He was correct that day it was not good for Buddy.
In discussions with the vet prior to the surgery, it was recommended that since he will be under anesthesia that other procedures be performed. One of those items was a teeth cleaning. No problem. Well a teeth cleaning ended up with six teeth being extracted. Also, there was a small lesion on his tongue that they suggested to be biopsied and he might as well get his rabies injection. Not a good day for Buddy. When we picked him up he was not a happy camper and was lethargic to say the least.
Part of his rehab was to put an ice pack on his incision a couple of times a day to help with the pain and swelling. So picture this, I am in my recliner with my leg propped up on two pillows with an ice pack on my knee to help with my pain and swelling. Right next to me was Buddy with an ice pack on his back to help with his pain and swelling. We were a sad looking pair but we were there for each other. Both biopsies came back benign so there was a sigh of relief for that. His jaw was very sore from the 6 teeth being extracted so it was a soft food diet for a couple of weeks.
After three weeks Buddy once again had a bounce in his step. The area of fur that was shaved for the incision to remove the growth has grown in and you can barely notice the scar on his back. Even though it is not visible, I am pretty sure that he has another emotional scar. The next time he has to go to the vet, for whatever reason, there will certainly be some type of flashback on his part back to the day of his surgery. As dog parents know, we are aware that we are doing the best for our pet and it is unfortunate that we could not have a simple conversation with our pet about why we appear to be causing them pain. The things we do for our pets.
My heart brakes every time I picture his face the first time I saw him post op.
Until the next Tom’s Take…