Wednesday, August 31, 2011

boxed in

That is exactly what it looks like. 
It is a Happy Meal. 
And I bought it for my child but let me explain…

So my dog died and the next day I took in a little puppy Mercy 12 weeks old from a failed adoption heading back into a kill shelter who considers a failed adoption the dogs fault putting her at risk for being put down.

My intent was to foster her.  Then I decided to keep her saying ‘we got more than we bargained for…’ And we did. About day three she stopped waging her tail, stopped eating, stopped drinking, & started throwing up.

I handle a lot of blood & guts well. I am really good with other people’s pain.  What I don’t do is emesis. And the dog got sicker & so did I.  I would go to get something to eat take one look at pukie-puppy and my stomach would roll.  But when I’m under stress I can’t stop running, you know literally running fuel or no fuel, type I or not I have to run.  I’ve logged way too many this week working things out.
By day five it was a slow lingering race as to which one of us would be admitted first for dehydration & malnutrition.  Since I can drive and Mercy can’t it was her.  I made a vet appointment for 10:15 with Dr. Peterson my vet just up the street a few city blocks.  Then called the shelter where she came from to keep them in the loop.  They requested I cancel my appointment and come to them at 2 to see their vet Dr. Brown while assuring me it was not a dreaded case of Parvo.
So we drive south across town.  Dr. Brown rules out Kennel Cough, rules out Parvo, & suspects bowel obstruction.  She instructs me to call Dr. Peterson for an emergency visit with him.
So we drive north across town.  At 2:17 Beach & I & Mercy are in the waiting room of our vet holding a whimpering puppy as a little dog named Taco deliveries puppies in a laundry basket while the owner waits for a cab to pick them up.
Once in with Dr. Peterson we have a positive Parvo test and a sick puppy sent into isolation with a 50/50 chance of survival.    
Gymnastics is in less than 1 hour.  I drive south across town with a sad hungry kid & the sudden realization I have no money in my pockets.  I swing by my best friends house but it is at the very moment she is curbside across town in the other direction at an elementary school. So no luck for a hand out I scrape together $4 in quarters and head to the golden arches which ironically sends me back tracking west across town (had I been thinking clearly or had I known I would be driving west again I could have just swung by home to get her a pb&j).
 From the lobby of gymnastics (across town east) I call the shelter to let them know and the Owner begins arguing with me that cannot be Parvo.  Dr. Brown steps in with her concerns over a false positive due to the resent vaccines.  The funny part about this moment is this is where I no longer felt sick.  I listened to medical fight gaining passion between the opposing parties as I handle calls back and forth.  Parvo is a lofty accusation in the dog community.  But the fight & the questions instead of tripping me up set me free.  I have done all that I can, I've done good [sic], I've done my best & that IS enough. 

If I was dog and I had 5 days to live I would want to do them at my place.  I would choose me (wow).  If Mercy dies she dies having gotten a fighting chance with good medical care which we are providing for her.  Even a No Kill Shelter would instantly euthanize a Parvo + dog.  If she dies she dies knowing what happens when you get too close to napping turkey, what chickens smell like, what napping in the grass feels like.  If she dies she won’t do it from inside a concrete kennel.  If she lives she will probably be my dog no matter how much I try to say otherwise & I can show her mountains from every corner, top to bottom.

I stepped out of the middle of the fight gave my vet permission to treat Mercy for whatever the three of them decided she had.  I drove west across town picked up my running clothes, my old running shoes, and headed east back across town to a large green shady park drinking a Gatorade & eating a cliff bar on the way then took off on a 8 mile run where the last of the jagged edges fell away- nothing but smooth long curves, sort of like those damn golden arches.  Yep.  If I was dog I would choose me that really is one hell of a complement.       

Talked to Dr. Peterson this morning the fever is down, x-rays are clear, and she is well hydrated but there is little overall improvement in her condition. It is a waiting game so in the meantime I think I will go out for a little run...

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