Monday, November 24, 2008

The Saga of Eddie

I feel incredibly guilty as I have known for over 2 weeks that I needed to do SOMETHING about that fence. I got complacent and was relying on simply watching Ed, either from the deck or the window whenever he was outside. Yesterday I came in the house for no more than 2 minutes, but that was more than enough time for him to make his grand escape.

Eddie has gotten out 3 times previous to yesterday. On the most recent of these, I found him myself after driving around for a half hour. The other 2 times, someone has found him and called me, one time within minutes, the other time it took about an hour. So, when it was already going on 2 hours yesterday, the dread really crept in. Yesterday was a fairly nice day and there were lots of people outside putting up Christmas lights, etc. while I was driving around. Once it got dark, people would go in and no one would be out to see my little guy. I was also worried that no one had called because Eddie had somehow lost his collar. If that happened, my only hope was that he'd be turned in to animal control in the morning and I could claim him there.

It got to be 10 p.m. and I was getting ready for bed when the phone rang. A couple had been out driving and had found Eddie in the road. Thank God for them. They stopped their car, blocking other cars from hitting him again. They had tried to call me once already, but I had missed the call because I had the water running in the bathroom and I didn't hear it. When I didn't answer, they had called animal control and the police. Once they got ahold of me, animal control said they weren't coming now that the owner was there. He was less than a half-mile from my house.

I'd been on scene just a couple of minutes when the first police car arrived... yes, I said the first. Must have been a slow night around here as eventually there were 3 on the scene! I guess Eddie CAN stop traffic... just a little late! The police officers were very helpful, finding the number for the emergency vet, and even calling for directions and to let them know I was on my way.

On the outside, Ed looked okay, just a few cuts and scrapes, but, of course, I was worried about internal injuries and broken bones. So was the vet. She was particularly concerned because he had scrapes on both his shoulder and his hip, designating that his whole body had been hit and not just one end. While her initial examination showed his legs didn't appear broken, she couldn't yet tell about his pelvis, and he seemed to have a lot of pain in his abdomen. I gave the okay to do blood tests and x-rays and waited the hour they said it would be before they knew more. The whole time I was thinking about what would be the limit... not only how much could I justify spending to put my baby back together, but also, would it be enough? Would he still be in pain and have lasting effects? If he would, I knew I'd have to make that most difficult of calls about what to do.

Once the x-rays and tests were done, the news was mostly good: no broken bones, and his bloodwork was primarily normal. One liver enzyme test was incredibly high, but she said that was normal for a dog who had gone through trauma, and that he would likely recover from that with medications and fluids. She did find a lot of bruising on his lungs, but, again, he should recover from it without a problem. The third concerning area was that she couldn't see his bladder on the x-ray, which could simply mean that it was empty, or it could mean that it had ruptured. Considering that the rest of his organs looked good, she though it was probably just empty, and I agree... he probably hadn't had much to drink in close to 10 hours.

I actually had the option of taking him home last night, but the vet recommended that he stay overnight so they could monitor him, keep him on fluids, and keep his pain managed. I agreed. They expected to transfer him to my regular vet this morning, but they feel that he will need another 24 hours of monitoring, and my vet's office doesn't have staff 24/7 like the emergency vet.

I had taken today off work, expecting to have to chauffer Eddie to the other doctor, but now I am using the day to fix the fence by placing brick pavers along the bottom of it. I have it about 1/3 of the way done and now need to go get more bricks. I need to do another 1/3 (2 sections) to feel really secure. The rest can wait until spring as it is not loose like the rest was.

So, please keep thinking good thoughts for my little boy; he should be home tomorrow. As I said in the spring when Coal got sick... "Here's where being a mom sucks!"

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Friday, November 14, 2008


This is getting real old, real fast.

For the third time in the last week, Eddie has escaped from the backyard and was not immediately found and coaxed home. There have been numerous other escapes, but I've always seen him in the neighbor's yard and been able to call him home. The first time was on Thursday afternoon last week when my neighbor let him out while I was at school for conferences. He was found by someone who called the number on his tag and my neighbor was able to go get him for me.

He escaped again Friday morning, after I thought I had blocked all the holes under the fence, but this time I was home. I walked around the neighborhood for nearly an hour in my pajamas, calling and searching for him before returning home empty handed. Luckily, he was found again by a good Samaritan who called me and I was able to go pick him up. Somewhere along the way he had found smells that I would have understood if we'd been on Mom and Dad's farm, but I didn't even realize could be found in the city!

I knew the fence was not yet secure, but I haven't had time to see about finding anchors for it. Instead I have simply watched Eddie whenever he has been outside. That's how I've been successful in catching him before he got out of the neighbor's yard. Tonight I made the mistake of taking my eyes off him for just a minute. I thought it would be safe since he had been so good for the last couple of days.

I was wrong.

When I went back outside, I found Copper sniffing around the backyard, but no Eddie. And then I heard him barking from what seemed to be about two to three yards away. By the time I was able to get Copper in the house, pull on shoes and a coat, and grab my phone and Eddie's leash, the barking had stopped. I decided to drive around the neighborhood, then parked for a while and walked, but there was no sign of him.

Until I had given up and was driving back to my house. Then, on our very own street, just a half-dozen houses from our own, I caught sight of some white spots moving around. I stopped the Jeep and began calling and, sure enough, there was my little beagle boy.

Tomorrow that fence gets fixed.


Monday, November 10, 2008

It's the Small Things

As I drove home from work tonight, it occured to me that I couldn't remember if I shut the kitchen trash in the bathroom or not before I left this morning.

The trash can which contained nearly a week's worth of trash, including dust from the vacuum cleaner and two bacon grease soaked paper towels.

I tried not to stress, as there was obviously nothing I could do about it if I had forgotten. If that was the case, likely the damage was done a minimum of ten hours earlier. But I still knew that, most likely, I would have one hell of a mess to clean up when I got there.

Imagine my surprise, then, when I arrived home to find the kitchen trash... still upright, covered, and, for all intents and purposes, completely untouched.

My little boy might be growing up.


Tuesday, November 04, 2008

NaBloPo... NO!

In case you hadn't figured it out already, I am NOT participating in NaBloPoMo this year. I did it the last two years, and I'm pretty proud to say that I completed it successfully, but both years it was downright sad by the end. As sparse as my posting has been over the past few months, I don't think I want to subject myself or anyone else to what I might be forced to post about if I attempted it.

Instead I'm trying to get through the week. Tomorrow and Thursday are parent-teacher conferences and my book fair is going on as well. We've done fairly well so far. Better than I would have expected, in fact, considering the state of the economy. We haven't reached the ultimate goal yet, of course, but there are still two evenings of parents being in the building. Historically, those are my biggest sale days anyway, so I still have hope.

I'm also going to be out of my classroom the next two days. I'm attending a conference as a district representative. It's really not all that exciting, but I don't want to give any more details that could compromise my anonymity. It just shows what a long way things have come since the Great Internet Witch Hunt of '06.

My sister came to visit this past weekend. She needed a little change of scenery and an opportunity to get away from her husband for a couple of days. It was nice to see her, but a little weird. "Jane" and I are six years apart in age, which is practically nothing now that we are older, but we've never been particularly close and I think she's always seen me as her little sister. It was kind of odd to be on equal footing with her.

Now I'm just looking forward to a nice three day weekend (no school Friday due to conferences this week) when I plan to become reacquainted with my bed.

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