One Sick Puppy

December 11, 2011

I didn’t grow up with a dog. Always wanted one. But, a dream realized only when I had my own family. I wanted my boys to grow up with a dog. I wanted my house to be relaxed. Calm. Stress-free. And, I thought adding a canine into our family would do just that.

So, three years ago we picked Murphy up at the Newark Airport Continental pet terminal. She hails from Washington state. Sam calls it “the happiest day of his life.” We all remember how tiny she was, and how she sat on my lap, shaking, on that first car ride home.

Murphy as a puppy

Murphy's first day in her new home.

Murphy's first bath

Just like all my kids, Murphy's first bath was in the kitchen sink.

I was ready. I had practically memorized Cesar’s Way and The Art of Raising A Puppy. I had my preliminary training session with an esteemed dog trainer and a first meeting with Murphy’s soon-to-be Vet. I even had her grooming parlor all picked out. How do you like that for efficiently nuts? But, I was ready. Bring on the pooch.

Over these past three plus years, Murphy’s had her share of “accidents.” She has also redecorated my house many times over. I have a gnawed-off end table, a half-eaten bed post in Sam’s room, a deformed leg on my kitchen table, and some totally digested magazine baskets, just to give you an idea of what I’m talking about. We now call it “Canine Chic” decor.

Murphy with a Sock

The Sock Bandit. We can never find our socks anymore.

But, all that was short lived compared to her gastrointestinal issues, which appear to mimic Jake’s, and are pretty consistent. She’s just about vomited everywhere. Everywhere. She’ll go for months keeping everything down, and then…bam. I’m cleaning up dog puke every two minutes. And, that’s what we’ve been living through this past week. Non-stop vomit clean-up.

Every morning, before I’ve made it downstairs to the kitchen, the boys have yelled, “Murphy puked again.”  Then, I hear their little feet running around, and another chorus of, “She puked here too. Mommmmmm, you gotta clean this up!” No shit.

This week has been a disaster. The boys have been late to school everyday. I’ve gone through about twenty rolls of paper towels. (I really do need to buy stock in Bounty.) My window seat in the living room is stained. The bench at the end of my bed, stained. The carpet we schlepped back from Hong Kong, stained. Fabulous.

Murphy Crazy

What? I don't feel well.

So, I took her to the vet. An office I absolutely HATE visiting. I love my dog, but strongly dislike other people’s dogs. And, it’s just like being in the waiting area of your pediatrician’s office. I don’t know what sickness those other kids are carrying around, and I do not want my babies getting close so they can catch something else. But, it’s impossible to keep the kids, and the dog, away from their counterparts. They’re always all over each other. It drives me crazy.

The Vet walks in, and I swear, if I put a yellow flowered house-coat on him with a white-blonde coiffed wig, he’d look just like my Bubbeh. Then he opens his mouth. And, he sounds just like her too. Amazing.

I stand, stroking Murphy, throughout her examination. She has no fever. Her lungs are clear. Her ears have some “schmutz,” as Dr. W informs me using his veterinarian vernacular. But, other than that, she looks gorgeous.

Murphy At the Beach

Just a gorgeous shot of Murphy.

I’m stumped. I tell him, “There has to be something wrong with her. She’s been throwing up all over the place, every day, multiple times throughout the day.”

Dr. W peers at me over his reading glasses, and simply says, “Sometimes, we just don’t know why.”

Are you kidding me? This visit is going to cost me $165. You better know why. Know something.

Clearly, the “what the fuck are you talking about” look on my face said it all. Because, Dr. W started scribbling on his animal cartooned medical pad. He then hands me this:

No food for 24 hours

Bland diet, boil hamburger, boil chicken, white rice

3-5 days

Umm. Excuse me. I looked from his “medical” prescription to him, and said, “I don’t cook for my own kids. Can I buy this at the pet store?”

He mumbled something, shook his head in judgement, and said, “Sure. I’m sure you can buy it.” Are you kidding me? He’s judging me. My dog’s been vomiting all week and the best he can do is offer me something reminiscent of my Bubbeh’s sick tummy recipe? Really? And, did I mention this visit is going to cost $165?

I muttered “Thank you,” paid, and headed out to the car. Shaking my head in disbelief the whole time.

For the next couple of days, we braved Murphy’s tumultuous tummy. Every morning, I prayed that I would awake to a vomit-free house. We all did our best to nurse our baby girl back to health.

Murphy With Soup

A little chicken soup always makes you feel better.

Kidding. So kidding. We did not really give her chicken soup.

We gave her a hot water bottle. Again. Kidding.

Finally. She just stopped. Thank G-d!

So, has Murphy brought calmness, and a relaxed air to our home? Not so much. But, we are crazy about her. And, as Mark says, “No expense would be spared to keep her healthy.” She is one of my babies, after all.


What has your pet added to your home/family?


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Carolyn December 12, 2011 at 4:08 am

I feel your pain! Her cousin Oscar is no better!!! xo

2 Sharon December 12, 2011 at 2:26 pm

It’s been a disaster! xo

3 hilary December 15, 2011 at 12:52 am

Oh, poor Murphy….. Showing your blog to my friends who have a dog. We all said a collective “awwwww” to Murphy.

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