Tuesday, January 09, 2018
In all my life I never had a pet. My father was not keen in having one so I was already more than 50 years old when I got to have someone or something to play with. It was a dog brought home by the wife in January of 2008 when she attended a wedding. The whole family was excited having him as part of the household. His name was yogi. He stayed with us for nine years until one day, my sons noticed that he was not himself doing nothing but lie on the floor. This prompted my two boys to take him to the vet. Xray revealed that his penis was cut somewhere in the middle inside his body caused by a trauma. What caused that is still a mystery to us. One of the speculations was that someone beat him really hard. I cannot be persuaded that this is the case because the hind legs would stand in the way of the penis. There was nothing wrong with the legs. Anyway the vet recommended that yogi be castrated and we agreed. So, the following day, yogi was operated on.
When my sons came to the vet for a visit, they saw the vet force feeding yogi. That afternoon, Kim, who rode with me to and from work decided to pay yogi a visit. When we arrived at the hospital, I was looking for him expecting that he would be very happy to see us, jumping and wagging his tail. Nothing. I even ran past a cage until Kim told me yogi was inside sleeping. I called him but to my surprise, there was no response from him. I tried to rouse him from sleep touching and petting him as I could but still no response until a staff talked to me to tell me that he was no longer with us. Immediately, I saw Kim crying while I was trying to control my anger asking them what happened and if they have told my sons that death was possible in his condition. All we knew was that he would be operated on, be well and go home.
Burying him was very painful. It was like a family member was being interred. We were all determined not to have another pet as the pain was too much.
Several months later, my wife came home again from a far away island down south. Lo and behold, she carried with her another puppy! Now this puppy was scot free and very independent in his former home in Marinduque where he could roam free., eat anytime and anything he wants. So, you can understand his frustration when we would crate him or tie him to restrain his movements. What's worse is that at 5 months old, he seems to be teething and bites anything. We would just discover the plants uprooted from the pots or our slippers being chewed to pieces. Even worst was that we were all bitten by him. First was Febie, Mamang's nurse, then Kraiganne, me and Nitz. Except for Kraiganne, we all received complete shots for rabies. I had to sacrifice several days just to get my shots at RITM.
When Dookie was with us for about a month when we started taking him to the vet. It was my turn when he received his first vaccination. One day, Mickey noticed that he had a wound on his back. I thought it was just an ordinary wound and let it be. Later on, it got bigger making us a little worried. We took him again to the vet and he was given medication for it. Just the same it kept on growing and probably very itchy as Dookie kept on scratching it until the flesh came out. Soon enough, there were two big wounds. All this time, Dookie became a picky eater. He wouldn't touch his food even the treats we bought from the vet. Then suddenly, he became very gloomy. By this time, we no longer tie him or keep him in a cage as he wouldn't run around anymore. This would have been fine except that he wouldn't eat, too. He became really soft, fragile and skinny. It was Coby who took him to the vet when he was suspected to have distemper. I was really surprised. When I was in college, I had befriended a veterinarian and his staff in Marikina. I would stay in the clinic for a long time and I know what distemper is and what it can do to a dog. It is deadly! So we prayed hard that he wouldn't die and gave him all the nurturing we can give knowing that he would go anytime soon. We practically spoon fed him and gave him shots and continuously talked to him urging him to hold on.
Days passed until his appetite was back! We were all so happy that even the vet was surprised that he was still alive. There was one thing that we noticed, though. His feet were becoming very weak. He would stumble down, pick up himself and walk again. By this time, his appetite is really back to normal and was consuming even more than he consumed before. We also stopped buying dog food and instead, Nitz would buy scrap meat and innards from the market, cook loads of it and store it in the fridge. His knees kept weakening until one day, he couldn't use his hind legs anymore. He would crawl anywhere he wanted to go. He would continue rushing to the door when a family member arrives, greet and wag his tail but he could not walk like a regular dog.
This morning, I got the surprise of my life when I woke up and he greeted me by the stairs. He was walking!!!! I guess a few more days and he will be back to normal. We have our baby back to us! What a relief and joy that day would bring to me, my wife and my children. I can't wait for that day to come.