Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Cone Of Shame

About four weeks ago my dog started licking at his paw. Sonneigh has always been a little obsessive compulsive about certain things so the husband and I just kind of assumed that this was his obsession du jour.  I checked his paw, nothing there, so in true Anderson (maiden name) fashion, I just ignored it for a while in the hopes that it would go away. This is a phenomenon that occurs regularly in my parents house.  "Your back windshield is greasy and seems to be covered in exhaust? Turn the radio up. It's not broken."* "You fell in the hallway at school and your arm hurts? Run some water on it, it's not broken."**Sadly, after about 2 weeks of the constant licking*** he started limping and within the course of approximately 24 hours the paw that was previously just damp was crusty and oozing and swollen.

I am the worst mother ever. When husband and I have children my friends might as well have social services on speed dial because seriously, who lets their dog's paw get CRUSTY AND SWOLLEN??? I swear though, I checked it nearly daily and there was never anything there. I promise on a stack of Bibles, my mother's grave. If I'm lying, may I never ever have enough money to own a pair of Frye boots.

We scheduled an appointment at the vet for the dog and got him in within 24 hours of the eruption of the crusty ooze.  The vet looked at it and drew back going "oooh......ew." (I was convinced that she was indeed going to be calling doggie social services at this point.) But she took him back to the mysterious back room that I imagine is lined with glass jars of poo specimens and expensive and unneccessary coat cleansers, and shed stoppers.  They checked his paw and couldn't find any initial point of wound so she determined that it was either *cue scary music* MANGE. AUTO IMMUNE DISEASE. OR the slightly less terrifying "He might have stepped on something and then just licked it to the point of infection but I don't really know what's wrong with it."

Oh my god dog doc what do we do????

265 dollars later we ruled out MANGE and the mild panic attack of what if it is mange and I lose all MY hair let alone the dogs.  That just left the Auto Immune Disease or random undiagnosable paw injury infection.  She was going to GUESS that it was just random injury and prescribed a course of steroids to stop the swelling and antibiotics since he had a staph infection. Staph infection? Isn't that what you get at hospitals and then you die from the surgery that was supposed to save your life. Awesome. Worst. Mom. Ever.

Oh. And that licking? Yeah...that wasn't going to be continuing if the paw was ever supposed to get better. So the prescription included 3 weeks of "The Cone of Shame." My dog is roughly the size of a 60 pound streamlined golden retriever. He's about knee high and whippy.  The Cone that he had to wear extended an easy 6 inches past his face. This turned him from a loveable and affectionate snugglebug into a clumsy torpedo of pain.  He ran into walls, chairs, counters, coffee tables, took out my knee and nearly shoved me down the stairs because he had no concept of space or distance. The worst part was watching him try to get any treats off the floor. The cone made his head look like an upside down trash can as he scootched it across the floor desperately trying to extend his tongue far enough to lick the ground. Or maybe the worst part was when I tossed him a marshmallow containing his meds and he missed it and it got wedged between his ear and inside of the cone. He took out two kitchen chairs and his water bowl trying to get that one. It might have also been the time that he tried to jump onto the bed but the bottom of the cone got stuck on the footboard and he just collapsed onto the ground all forward momentum finished. Did you know that when a dog drools in the Cone of Shame it just trickles back and drips down his neck? Oh yes my friends...a waterfall of drool.

I thought about taking pictures, and I did take a few with my phone, but ultimately the guilt of being the worst dog mom ever won out and I don't have these special moments saved for posterity and wont post them on the blog.  There are some things that a mom shouldn't ever make public.

2 and a half weeks into the Cone of Shame experience the vet has seen the dog again for a check up and the paw is pretty much completely healed and she's ruled out an Auto Immune Disease.   She thinks now that maybe he got stung by a bee. 265 dollar bee sting? Sweet, I'll take that over the Mange and skin eating itself any day.  He doesn't have to wear the Cone anymore and the licking seems to have stopped. I can't wait to go to sleep tonight and not have my husband's snores drowned out by the lick slurp lick slurp....

Isn't he adorable?

* The engine block was definitely cracked and leaking oil
** My bone was definitely broken and moved 18 degrees in the wrong direction.
***Constant. As in, INCESSANT. Slurp, lick, slurp,  lick. All night. So loud that we could hear him through closed doors. I cannot begin to explain the special hell that is incessant dog licking noises.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Mind Games

 I love working on a college campus, it keeps me young and definitely helps me stay in touch with popular culture and fashion trends.  This year's newest crop of first year students seem to be ushering in a new era of neon.  The hot pinks and greens of my youth have made a resurgance in new materials that promise less fading and a greater ability to withstand the harsh laundry cycles of the residence hall washing machine (cough..or mom's washer since let's be honest, none of the new freshmen have ever touched a scoop of detergent let alone a dryer sheet.) I love it and can hardly bear to get my hopes up that Jelly Shoes are following close behind.  Gasp! And slouch socks...omg...if only slouch socks would return.  While many of the freshmen look like they stepped straight out of TeenBeat or Cosmo, there are a few that make me shake my head.

These 'others' are the ones that were the impetus for the new game that I play in my head as I walk around campus.  It's called  "Not as cool as you think it is." This new game replaces last year's "Honors Student or Hipster" game.  So far in my campus people watching I have found:

1. Riding the scooter to class...not as cool as you think it is.
2. Wearing volleyball shorts while running...not as cool as you think it is.
3. Wearing same volleyball shorts as classroom attire...not as cool as you think it is.
4. contributed by a police officer friend of mine "Sitting chained to a metal bench puking your guts out...not as cool as you think it is."
5. Flipping those boxers inside out and using body spray as a shower replacement...not as cool as you think it is.
6. Saying "wasssuppppppppp" to your professor....not as cool as you think it is.
7. Uggs + Short Shorts...not weather appropriate OR as cool as you think it is.
8. Horrible 70s style men's tank tops that show a serious excess of armpit and armpit hair...NOT as cool as you think it is.

I am sure that by this time next year this list will have grown exponentially becuse the students become just a little freer with their personalities with the passing of every month.  I'm sure that the newest bad decision is just around the corner....I just hope it's not jelly shoes in January. I might have to add myself to the list.

Salt and Vinegar

My last blog was started for a specific purpose. I wanted to have a place to write down my thoughts and really focus on counting my blessings while I was going through a patch of anxiety and what I would call depression for me but probably not REALLY depression.  Just a time of not being 'right' and not being 'thankful.'  I used it as a place to try to make myself remember just how lucky I am.  And it worked! I got to a point where I didn't need a reminder. Where the thoughts came naturally again and life became great.  And then...I just didn't really blog.  I didn't write much at all. This is normal for me, I go through phases and spurts and pauses. 

Recently, I've kind of been wishing that I had kept it up...not as a place to count my blessings but just as a little bit of the universe that I can use to share information and ideas and pictures of things that I think are cool.  So-- this brings you Salt and Vinegar. 

Why Salt and Vinegar? Well... not going to lie, I love it. I looooooooooooove Salt and Vinegar anything and I was feeling pressured by blogger to come up with a catchy name. But, also, I think that it's an accquired taste much like myself. It's not for everyone and never will be. Sometimes it's a little too tart or bitey for everyone and that's fine, so am I.   Also, it speaks to my heritage. I'm half Kentucky and half British.  It's a great combo for enjoying the finer things in life like fried chicken one night for dinner followed up with an amazing dark ale and a tasty steamed pudding while watching a soccer game. 

I don't know if this blog will be any more entertaining than my last. I know it wont be any more grammatically correct as I do write these things like a stream of concious and not professional journalism. I didn't want to continue with the last one because I kind of felt like I sounded really depressing in some of the posts.  Who wants to read that? So, I made a new one!  I'm hoping to share some recipes, photographs, observations on life and just general thoughts with this one.  Follow if you want :-) ~Mus