Dixie Peach: Drama Dog

Cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Drama Dog

I love my dog. A lot. Please believe me when I say that I just adore Bonnie.

When people start a topic by claiming how much they love someone/something, you can pretty well bet that it'll be followed by some sort of complaint about the object of their sincere affection.

There will be no exceptions here.

Remember this?

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That was taken about five weeks ago when Bonnie stepped in some glass and got a sliver lodged in her paw. And she seems to have done it again.

Bonnie is a shared dog. She was originally mine but when my MIL's dog died she started keeping Bonnie with her at night so she wouldn't be so lonesome. My MIL, not Bonnie. Bonnie never acts lonesome. Anyway, last night my MIL called to report that Bonnie was limping after their last evening walk and she seems to have something in her paw again. Not that Bonnie would ever let you confirm this. Bonnie has always been suspicious of anyone trying to do anything to her with the exception of petting her and snapping a leash on her collar. Want pick that tick off her that you found while stroking her head? Forget it. Want to flea comb her? Forget it. Want to grab that bit of pine sap that somehow got stuck to her muzzle? Forget it. Want to put some simple anti-tick drops on her neck? Forget it. Each of these is greeted with a snarled lip and if you don't back off fast enough, she just may try an actual bite. If you wish to accomplish any of these things, it must be done by surprise attack.

I can sort of understand this reaction in Bonnie. When Bonnie was a puppy some jerk cut off her tail so that it's just a small stub. Tail docking and ear clipping isn't done in Germany by vets so if it's done, it was a homemade job and whoever did this to Bonnie docked her tail much too close to her body and likely without any sort of anesthetic. In turn she's suspicious of any sort of activity that may result in her missing more body parts and in Bonnie's world, even getting a bath may result in missing body parts. Of course if given the opportunity Bonnie would rather make it you that draws back a nub instead of her.

So my hearing that Bonnie needed another trip to the vet wasn't greeting with shouts of joy. It's always a tragedy in two acts and I had a feeling that today's vet visit would be no exception.


Getting Bonnie into the car is easy. Getting Bonnie out of the car is easier because it's hot and my car is like a blue oven on wheels. Getting Bonnie down the street goes fine but once we approach the vet's office she's put two and two together. Let the balking begin!

Upon opening the door I'm greeting with the sight of a stuffed full waiting room, due to the fact that on Wednesdays the vet is open only from 3pm to 7pm, and it's full of very large dogs. Bonnie isn't that fond of other dogs. She loves all people (except for those who are trying to do something other than pet her) but dogs can be sort of hit-and-miss. Luckily Bonnie is so busy doing her freak out act that she doesn't really register that some of these dogs look like they should have saddles and could gulp her down in one bite. Mmmmm! Terrier! Even tastier than Bagle Bites!

I corral Bonnie to the corner while my MIL tells the receptionist that their dream patient has arrived. In the meantime Bonnie is trying to simultaniously bolt for the door, hide under my legs and crawl into my lap. Sound impossible? I thought it was too until I became my dog's personal jungle gym. She's whining and panting - a sort of wincing, throaty sound that makes my skin crawl and, judging by the looks of the other pet owners, theirs too - and I have a feeling that since we're in a crowded waiting room we're here for the long haul.


There's a certain advantage of having your dog known to the animal hospital as the biggest jackass in town. When they catch our name on the waiting list we get bumped up so as to get Bonnie the hell out of there as soon as possible before she causes actual structural damage to the building with her whining and writhing.

Bonnie wants to bolt through a door but the door being opened to us wasn't the one she had in mind. She weighs only twelve kilos but when you have to drag her down a short hallway, she may as well weigh twelve hundred. We enter and the vet seeing her says "She's back again? So soon? I mean, how can we help Bonnie today?".

My MIL explains that Bonnie seems to have something in her paw again, the same one as last time and the vet says "Poor thing!". I not quite sure if she means Bonnie or herself but I wouldn't be in the least bit insulted or surprised if she means the latter. The vet's assistant comes in with a muzzle and I merely say "Good luck!". If putting Bonnie in a muzzle were in the least bit easy, she'd come in wearing one already.

The vet assistant attempts to muzzle Bon and is greeted with a snarl and the quickest jaws in Germany. My MIL attempts to hold Bonnie still between her legs while the vet tries to lasso Bonnie's snout in a rag so the muzzle can be put on and is rewarded with a snap under her thumb. No skin is broken by my MIL's hand is now slightly bruised for her efforts. Another assistant who is supposed to be quite good at muzzling comes in and upon seeing Bonnie says "No. She beats even me down.".

My MIL asks if they can sedate Bonnie but the vet vetos the idea by saying "If I could get that close to her without her freaking out I could just grab whatever's in her paw. As it is I'm not going near her with something pointy until I can be relatively sure it's not going to end up in me by mistake.".

We come to the agreement that Bonnie is simply unable to be treated in her present state. It's too hot, she's too over stimulated by fear and by so many strange dogs and people around and likely she's probably in some pain from whatever is in her foot. On to plan B.

We're given a sedative tablet to give Bonnie in the morning an hour before we bring her in. It won't put her to sleep but should make her loopy enough that they can muzzle her and handle her in a manner that's safer to Bonnie and to them. We're also to come in at 8:30am when it's cooler outside and there won't be as many other dogs around.

The door is opened and Bonnie lunges for the outer exit with a speed I've never seen her before exhibit. For a hobbled dog, she's making tracks.

Act III will be tomorrow morning. Please - no one call for an encore, okay?


Blogger melusina said...

Ugh. I can relate though. Three cats equals a nightmare at the vet.

Here's hoping Bonnie makes it through and gets whatever is in her paw out! Poor thing.

11:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bonnie reminds me of my dog Sunny, who I had when I was in my teens. Dip Bonnie in white paint, give her a big, fluffy tail, and she's Sunny redux. Personality and all.

Good luck tomorrow.

11:24 PM  
Blogger Mr. Fabulous said...

Hang in there, Bonnie!

Very adorable pooch!

1:27 AM  
Blogger sari said...

Good luck!! I hope it all comes out well!

3:24 AM  
Blogger Kirsti said...

I hope that tomorrow morning gives you and Bonnie the desired results! I'll start praying for the vet ;)

5:30 AM  
Blogger Miz said...

Let her wash the pill down with a white wine chaser. ;)

6:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Best part of this post: referring to your dog as a jackass. I can relate- as loveable as Pausha was, the furry guy was a jerk to non-family members.

But the most surprising thing about Pausha that for all of his 102 pounds of German Shepherdness, he was a big pat of butter with vets. He would melt down and just lay there- the only time we ever heard he was a good boy. I think he liked the vet so much because he was so good there, he DIDN'T have to wear his muzzle.

Anyhoo, the car as a blue oven on wheels got me, too.

I love that dog. She really is sweet when she is not cornered.


5:37 PM  
Blogger Mimey said...

If only pets understood you act out of affection. Have you tried explaining that you're trying to make her feel better? Maybe send her an email ten minutes before you try to save her foot.

And this is why I have no pets.

6:58 PM  

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