Category Archives: Bad Dog NO

CSI: My Apartment

May 27, 2008 — The phone call from my roommate came at the end of the day.

Amy: When are you going to be home?

Me: I’m on the road even as we speak. Why?

Amy (laughing): I have to show you something….

When I got back to the apartment, she was sitting against the headboard of her bed, reading a book. She invited me to come in and sit where she was, to get her vantage point.

You may already know that dogs are not allowed in Amy’s bedroom. You may also have read here that Truman has grown into a well-mannered dog, trustworthy around the house.

You may not know that my roommate often puts a bath towel on her floor on which she sets “lay flat to dry” clothing.

Click to enlarge the evidence.

I went over the events of the day in my head, and realized he would have had exactly one window of opportunity in which to perpetrate this act of sneakitude: while I was in the bathroom that evening, for approximately three minutes. Stealth Dog strikes again…but he is apparently not smart enough to cover his tracks.

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It May Be Worse Than I Thought

So, the vet put him under, looked up both nostrils, and found nothing up the boy’s nose. Nada. No foxtail, not even mucous membrane damage to indicate that a foxtail had been there. What could it be? According to the vet:

1.) Could be an allergy of some kind.
2.) Could be a foxtail that has somehow been snorted wayyyyyy up there, only detectable by the use of a pediatric endoscope through the mouth and up the back way into his nasal workings. That’s apparently specialist domain; regular vets don’t typically have to do this.
3.) Could be something else. (Thanks, that was helpful.)

At any rate, I was instructed to keep an eye on him for further sneezing episodes, which would apparently get worse; excessive discharge, in colors that would indicate the presence of infection; and/or blood, which is just never what you want to see in any case.

So today I went downstairs for a couple of minutes to get something out of the truck, and when I got back up to the apartment, my roommate and I had the following exchange:

Amy: “Um, Truman was making this awful gagging/choking noise, and then he spat something on the floor.”

Me: “What was it?”

Amy (holding open a napkin): “This.”

Me (freaking out, after a split-second look at what was once a spider): “EWW! You could have just said! You didn’t have to SHOW me!”

It was a few minutes before it dawned on me that the spider could have been our option number three. Makes sense, in a way — no mucous membrane damage, possibly bit him in the mouth or nose and caused irritation that might result in sneezing. Also makes sense that Truman would find a way to present me with some kind of horrible nightmare starring creatures that freak me out more than just about anything else.

He is still sneezing occasionally, but it’s just once or twice instead of the crazy, minute-long violent sneezing jags he had on Wednesday and Thursday. No funny-colored dog snot, no blood.

My dog the spider-snorter. Figures.

Reason #517 Not to Be Sniffy

It’s foxtail season.

Apparently, someone — who shall remain nameless — stuck his nose where it didn’t belong, when no one was looking, and is now at the vet, having surgery.

He’ll be fine, but it’s derailed our plans for his big weekend visit with his sister Tori. Hopefully this will teach him not to go snorting up the vegetation.

Never seen a foxtail? This handy foxtail info page will show you what you should be looking out for, especially if you live here in Southern California….

He Who Must Soon Be Neutered

Before I got Truman, my roommate bought a little Harry Potter “sorting hat” key chain, and it was our plan to put it on Truman’s cute little head, take a photo, and announce to the world which house he’d been placed in.

From day one, Truman has been virtually impossible to catch in a nice sitting or lying down pose. The hat idea, which would probably have worked on a calmer pup, soon fell by the wayside. Even the photos from puppy pickup day show the other dogs happily in the arms of their raisers and obediently piddling on the grass before the trip home…but not Truman. I have some lovely pics of him obsessing on eating the grass, lunging for the other puppies, and (this one’s my favorite) stretching from the safety of my arms to bite the neck of a nearby littermate.

So the roommate immediately suspected, even without the aid of the sorting hat, that Truman belonged in the house of Slytherin. His great love for the squeaky plush snake toy was another clue.

But the decision was solidified yesterday, after another random attack during a trip outside to relieve. When Truman’s deadly puppy canines left this bloody, jagged mark on the top of my left foot, I knew what I was dealing with:

He’s not just from Slytherin. My dog is freaking VOLDEMORT.

Never a More Fitting Blog Title

April 21 – In a death-defying gamble, I opted to take Truman with me when I went to lunch with an old college friend and his fiancee, who were here from out of state.

Let me first say that it’s unbelievable, how much exercise this dog requires.

I had taken him for our customary morning walk, then played with him for a while in the hope that he might be sleepy enough to snooze under the table at lunch. Foolish mortal! What was I thinking? After a 30-minute drive, he had recharged enough to cause plenty of trouble at the restaurant.

Fortunately, it was a fairly casual place, and not crowded, and we were sitting outside. The wait staff was lovely about the fact that my dear little beastie is a loudmouth — we weren’t seated five minutes before he decided that I wasn’t paying proper attention to him, and began barking at me. And growling. And biting. I spent much of the rest of the meal with a fork in my right hand and a compressed rawhide bone in my left, in an attempt to simultaneously enjoy my food and keep His Majesty from further speaking his mind. I had exhausted all my tricks for keeping him still under the table; he simply refused to cooperate. And heaven knows you can’t do a whole lot of correcting in public…there are people who just don’t understand, and you don’t want to leave a bad impression of the school or the program.

The four of us took a seemingly endless (to Truman) 45-minute walk after lunch, which I thought would certainly bring the mantle of sleep to his little eyes. Worked fine in the car, but as soon as we got home, he was back to full speed and flashing teeth mode.

It was frustrating, and loads of fun to explain to my friend and his fiancee (whom I was meeting for the first time) that this is the WORST I’ve ever seen him behave in public. They seemed to like him anyway, though, at least enough to risk being close enough to his Gaping Jaws of Peril for a photographic souvenir:

And that is the mark of a true friend. Thanks, Jeremy. 🙂

Have you seen the movie "The Prestige"?

If you haven’t seen it, and you intend to (highly recommended, by the way), do NOT read this post. It will spoil the whole thing.

If you have seen it, you will understand when I say that some days I spend my time looking all over the apartment for Truman’s twin.

Truman 3, Pants 0

Three pairs of my favorite jeans, which are no longer made.

Trumanated. Ripped by an exuberant, open-jawed, leaping Labrador who doesn’t always want to go for a nice calm walk.

It’s a good thing he’s so freakin’ cute.