March 12, 2010
Hello Everyone, Wimsey here coming to you as usual from Manhattan’s Upper West Side and feeling fortunate to be doing so. So fasten your seat belts, we’re in for a bit of a bumpy ride this week.
Normally on a post dated March 12th I would be discussing the upcoming Ides of March and how Caesar should have listened to his Hound, Wimsius Houndus Giganticus, and gone to Cancun instead of hanging around the Forum waiting to be stabbed. Or perhaps I would be reveling in the upcoming holiday of St. Patrick (and the role of the Hound as the reverse leprechaun) which unlike the more sedate holiday of St. Hubert (whose monks are responsible for the perfection that is The Bloodhound) requires ebullient New Yorkers of all ethnicities to drink as much as possible and throw up in the street. Or perhaps I would be conducting a critique of this year’s Oscar’s (and how I am thinking about emulating the movie “Precious” by renaming this blog: “Wimsey’s Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound Based on the Life of Wimsey the World’s Most Magnificent Bloodhound” ((except of course for the one stealing you lunch as you read this)). Or then again maybe I would be thinking about assembling one of those Best Actor/Actress coteries who seem to be delivering eulogies to people still alive and who would tell embarrassingly flattering and fawning stories about me and sing my praises with unrestrained verve.
Or finally perhaps I would be discussing my upcoming birthday next Friday, an event which always leaves my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth scratching their heads about what more they can do for me. Generally rather than adding to my pile of toys or the astounding total on my pedometer Maria prepares me a Norwegian cream cake whose recipe comes from our good friend Nanook the Newfy whose pre-diet favorite it was. Then, as is the annual custom, my humans sit back and marvel at how the pints of whipped heavy cream do nothing to perturb the Wimsey digestion whereas a smidgeon too much roast chicken or a bit too much roast beef send me running to the curb to produce a hot mess. For the record Grom Gelato (whose season is close upon us), pizza and Maria’s mother’s baked goods also have surprisingly little effect on my intestinal well being.
But I digress. Well this week started out perfectly normal—a beautiful Spring Day where, as an avidly sporty Hound, I invaded this game of touch football and delighted those who were privileged enough to view me perambulate about the park. (I was actually quite a successful quarterback at one time, always sending my team long for a score right into the hot dog stand). And then as I was lollygagging about in my usual way to avoid exiting the park a man sitting on a bench 20 feet away with a snarling Wheaten Terrier “lost control” of the leash (must take lessons on how this 40lb animal got a grown, non-elderly man to lose control of the leash, whereas I, at a majestic 130, have never been able to so with either of my dainty ladies despite outweighing one and coming close to outweighing the other). Anyway, the long and the short of it was that I was attacked. And not being used to such events, my humans inspected only my head and neck for signs of damage and finding none, unfortunately did not exchange information with my attacker’s human. It was not until we were close to home and passing the 20th Precinct when we ran into my special friend, Officer Wendt and this sharp eyed officer of the law called my humans’ attention to a large and ugly wound behind my right leg. (Here is a picture of me with that fine, Hound loving officer in happier times).
Well, as my usual vet’s office was closed I was summarily hustled off to Westside Vet where I was inspected minutely until it was determined that I had only one wound. So I spent my Sunday evening getting shot up with drugs, being anesthetized, intubated, probed, X-rayed (my abdominal wall was still intact!) and finally sewn up. But not before the poor vet had to list all the drugs she was going to use on me for Elizabeth’s approval and to listen to a biochemistry lecture (she’s lucky that Elizabeth skipped the part about the genetics of the cytochromes) about my being a poor metabolizer of drugs and how easy it is to give bloodhounds a one way ticket over the rainbow bridge with anesthesia. I must say, mercifully I don’t remember much about all this but I am told my humans did not get a lot of sleep that night even after being told that I had come through fine.
Anyway, on Monday I hobbled off to Elizabeth’s Hound Hospital to begin my recuperation. And through the haze of drugs I was able to discern that there was a nursing schedule of my meds and compresses stuck to the fridge and that a deluxe sheet nest (an old duvet of which I am fond and a pile of sheets) had been thoughtfully prepared for my comfort. But not for my comfort was The Giant Plastic Cone, measuring something like five feet across, to prevent me from ripping out my drain. I mean who invented this thing? In New York City apartments one inattentive swipe could catastrophically wipe out the entire gin collection. Fortunately the cone was dispensed with in favor of observation until Maria procured a “more comfortable” inflatable one. And Maria, whose stairs and work schedule precluded her from taking part in my recovery sent over my stuffed dog and a new squeaky blue stuffed sheep to comfort me. But what really comforted me was being hand fed scrambled eggs while reclining in bed that first night. That was almost worth getting attacked for!
So that has pretty much been my week. By Tuesday I was feeling well enough to turn my attention to a campaign of seriously disrupting Elizabeth’s sleep. These disruptions largely consist of playing with my toys, having frequent long and loud drinks of water, digging and otherwise noisily rearranging my bedding, conducting regular bed checks to make sure Elizabeth is still alive, vigorous, loud flapping of the ears, snoring and when not snoring indulging in audible dreams featuring a wide range of Hound vocalizations. And I must give a shout out to Clavamox, whose ingestion enables me not only to produce more gas but a gas of a superior kind, being of an even more noxious nature than my usual emissions. Clavamox, which I will be on for two weeks, also has another beneficial side effect—because it must be taken with food and since I free feed, special, super delectable meals must be prepared so I eat in conjunction with the drug. These consist of various combinations of kibble with poached salmon, boiled chicken, turkey, rice, yams and pumpkin. Who says hospital food is bad! Sadly, I am being discharged from Elizabeth’s Hound Hospital this evening owing to Elizabeth’s incipient case of sleep deprivation psychosis (and my superior healing abilities, helped no doubt by all the healing thoughts from my good and caring friends at Maria’s office).
And on Wednesday I had my drain removed so hopefully the evil doughnut collar has been consigned to the dustbin of history. Everyone at this new vet’s office has been super nice since they are of the general opinion that I am a splendid and well behaved fellow (a clear case of a book being judged by its cover) and of course the fact that Elizabeth let slip that I had been shown at Westminster didn’t hurt my reputation any. Saying that you are a show dog is lot like saying you went to Harvard—it suddenly imbues you with a whole pile of characteristics that you probably don’t possess. In my case, everyone assumes that I am obedient and well behaved—which I usually am- unless of course you attempt to get me to do something that I don’t want to do, like getting off your lap or not taking my new squeaky blue sheep out for a walk. And being on restricted exercise this week has meant that I had to find new and peskier outlets for my energy, a situation with which I suspect anyone at home with a bored, sick child will immediately recognize and sympathize.
So the good news for this week is that Elizabeth was able to report to Maria that I was feeling better and the bad news for this week was also that Elizabeth was able to report to Maria that I was feeling better. It is of such dualities that life with me consists. A Hound is the ne plus ultra of no-win situations.
Well I could wax philosophical about how in the blink of an eye (or the bite of a tooth) life is suddenly changed and plans (and sleep) go out the window or about how we should appreciate those with whom we share our lives but really it’s all about cooking for your Hound and scratching his belly where the stitches itch (and a buying a good pair of nose clips). And of course allowing him to take walks with his new squeaky blue sheep even if it is raining and muddy out.
Until next time,