Wednesday, January 04, 2006
bonnie- redefining the definition of supercute
my mom and dad wish this were a joke, but it's not. you see, not only was i born with a heart murmur, two luxating patellas (bad knees), no natural instinct to drink water, and the cutest face on the... well, face of the earth, i was also born with what neurologists call "a malformation at the back of the skull."
everything was fine with my new mom and dad, they rescued me at thanksgiving and promptly fell in love with me, i was teaching champ who was really the boss of the house, i charmed both sets of grandparents when they came for a visit, i knocked the socks off my aunt alicia and aunt laura over christmas, and i just loved giving my granpa kisses all over his beardy face and sniffing lovingly at his ears.
yes, yes, everything was fine until the thursday before new year's eve, when all of the sudden, i didn't feel like myself any more. i couldn't stop shaking, and i was making these weird little panting faces. mom and dad were set to go out to a party (mom looked good) they had been looking forward to all month, but mom realized she should probably stay home to make sure i was ok. she thought that i was shaking because, i'm a naturally anxious little dog, but then my legs weren't working too well, so mom made dad go get dr. jp next door. we're lucky to live next door to an awesome vet who works at a vet er. he came over promptly and said to keep an eye on me and make an appointment to see an internist soon, like tomorrow.
so mom stayed home with me and was only a little bit resentful that dad got to go and get wasted with all of their friends, but she made up for it by ordering fried chicken, goat cheese salad and a brownie sundae- hey, it wasn't new years yet.
dad came home very, very intoxicated, which was funny until it got to be annoying because, hello? couldn't he see that i was still shaking and not my pretty, little self any more? mom let me sleep in the bed that night, things were pretty bad and she won't admit this to me, but i think she was afraid to wake up and find me dead in my crate the next morning. i kept shaking all night, unless she held me really tight, only then would i relax, but then after about five minutes i would thrash about and try to get up, only i didn't know where i was going and my legs, they didn't work so good.
the next morning we all woke up and mom and dad's friends had stayed the night and they all ordered breakfast. i seemed a little bit better, but then as dad went out to pick up the food, i started tremoring really bad, and my eyes drifted up, my mouth opened and i was panting weirdly and then i started foaming at the mouth. mom freaked out! i mean, freaked the heck out! thank goodness mom's friend sue was there and was like, lets go to the animal hospital and mom was like yeah- but i still have my pajamas on and i'm not wearing any underwear (her hair? atrocious!). mom scrambled around the house, getting ready and mom and sue were going to take a cab, but dad came home and drove us to the hospital, leaving all the food for sue and her boyfriend.
we went to the animal medical center in new york city. this is a fancy schmancy animal hospital where people can take their pets in an emergency. mom and dad are very thankful it exists. they are also very thankful that mom made an appointment for later in the afternoon that they just bumped up when we got there, because an emergency visit is damned expensive ($500 to walk in the door). dr jp was there, and visited with mom while they were taking care of me in the back. mom was a little embarrassed because she hadn't brushed her teeth, or her hair, or applied makeup and oh, she was crying.
the doctor's took very good care of me and told mom and dad that i needed an mri (yup, they have those things for dogs too). they also wanted to do an ekg on me because of my heart murmur, to make sure i could take the anesthesia ok. the ekg was normal and the doctor was so nice that he didn't charge us for it. i think he felt guilty because he had to send us all the way out to long island to get the mri, because their mri machine was busted. mom and dad drove me to long island vet specialists where i met a lot of very nice doctors and nurses. my neurologist was dr. dewey, who (mom likes to say), literally wrote the book on canine neurology (dr. jp gave it to mom to go through the other day, it's his text book from cornell). dr. dewey was very nice and answered all of mom's questions and was very honest with mom and dad.
they did an ultrasound to rule out a liver shunt, when that came out normal, they did the mri. while i was out, they shaved my back and did and spinal tap as well, to test for inflammation of the brain and spine.
let's count that, ekg, ultrasound, mri and a spinal tap all in one day. did i mention that i weigh about 10 pounds and am only 15 months old? they found the malformation at the back of the skull in the mri and gave me some steroids, to help with the pressure on my brain. dr. dewey told mom and dad that some dogs respond well to drug treatment and some dogs need to have surgery to remove the malformation to ease the pressure on the brain. we go back in a month to see if i will need the surgery, and for now, i'm almost back to my old self. mom is worried about the steroids though, she doesn't want me to start growing more facial hair and have my voice deepen like champ's.
mom and dad think its a good thing i'm so darn cute.