New Family Member

I haven’t written anything personal in this blog since March of 2012. I’ve never made a habit of updating this blog and since China’s death in November of 2011 I just haven’t felt like updating any of my sites, with the exception of the MJFDB.

But now I have something good to blog about and I’m surprised it’s taken me this long. Most likely I’ve put it off because I’m still superstitious and didn’t want to ‘jinx’ it. In fact, I’m still nervous about the so-called jinx huju even though tomorrow is the day.

We adopted a dog. Currently his name is Wags but it seems likely that his name will be changed to Max shortly after he arrives.

A few months ago I was browsing the Pets section of Craigslist just looking at dogs. I wasn’t looking with any real intention of adopting, I just wanted to look at the pooches. I noticed Wags, watched his video and thought he would probably be a good dog for us but we still weren’t ready for that yet.

When we decided we were ready to at least start looking I kept checking out Craigslist and a few weeks ago Wags was posted again. I couldn’t believe he was still available so I read his information more closely.

Wags was in Arkansas and had been at the shelter for several months. Unconditional Love Rescue had noticed him and decided to add him to their group of dogs for which they would try to find a home.

To be completely honest, Wags sounds like he’s a lot like China. We will never be able to replace China but she was such a great fit for us that finding another dog like her seems almost miraculous. I could be wrong though and he may be completely different from China – we won’t really know that for a few months. Hopefully, even if he turns out to be the Yang to China’s Yin he’ll still be a good fit.

We really need a new canine member in this family.

I contacted the rescue, we filled out an application, they talked to me and talked to our vet and we were approved. He arrives tomorrow morning in Kittery, Maine via Got Orphans Transport and we’re very anxious to meet him!

Here’s hoping that he fits in, especially with these two crazy cats.

Wags...being serious
Wags…being serious
Wags
Wags
Wags
Wags

Wags’ video

China is gone

China got much worse on Sunday. We let her go Sunday evening at 6:45 p.m.

China Mills: 2000 (?) - November 13, 2011
China Mills: 2000 (?) - November 13, 2011

Pet News of the Sad Kind

A few weeks ago China, our beloved pooch, became very stiff and got to the point where she couldn’t walk. We took her to the vet and she was diagnosed with Lyme Disease. We got her on antibiotics and within 36 hours she was almost back to her old self.

Cut to a week and a half later, and she became lethargic and her limbs were stiff all over again. We took her back to the vet and they did some more blood work. Her liver wasn’t great, but not terrible, and her kidneys looked fine. They figured she wasn’t swallowing her antibiotics correctly and gave us a different kind. Within 24 hours she was much improved.

Cut to a few days ago. She became lethargic again, constantly nauseous although she rarely spit up anything other than bile and white foam. We hoped it was an upset stomach but it continued to get worse. When she stopped eating and drinking I called the vet.

I took her in today after hours and the doc did some more blood work and took some x-rays. I was pretty much convinced that she had swallowed something nasty while we weren’t looking and that her bowels were obstructed. The vet was more concerned that her Liver had taken a turn for the worse.

We were both wrong. China has acute renal failure – 75% of her kidneys are no longer functioning.

It could have been caused by the Lyme disease but the fact that her kidneys looked great just 10 days ago makes that suspect. The doctor said that it looked more like antifreeze toxin, but we have none of that around here and she’s never outside alone where some cruel person could slip it to her. We watch her like a hawk.

The doctor is going to talk to an internal specialist on Monday to see if he has any other ideas, but basically it comes down to this: She will never be ‘normal’ again. We’re going to work to get her to a point where she’s comfortable but if we can’t give her good quality of life we aren’t going to force her to live in misery just to ease our own suffering.

She also has an enlarged heart. No idea how long it’s been like that.

The kidney failure is very bad news and I’m trying to prepare for the worst, but I will work to keep her with us for as long as possible. If we can get her to a reasonable comfort level she’ll have to take Pepcid and Tums everyday for the rest of her life long with weekly subcutaneous fluid injection which we can do ourselves. Her diet will also change – basically reverse Atkins for dogs. It has to be a low protein diet.

I’m pretty much heartbroken right now because when I was a vet tech, I helped take care of dogs with renal failure and in those cases, it never ended well. But that was over 10 years ago so I’m hoping that the meds they have now are better than they were a decade ago.

I’m not giving up hope.

Like my dog? Buy her stuff!

Yes, some shameless self-promotion here. If you know and love China (like all those who meet her do) you can get yourself some swag with her sweet poochy face. Check it out!


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