Monday, July 26, 2010

Funny Farm News

Some of you have been seeing the posts on Facebook about all the sick kids and wondering what is going on... Well, apparently a little bit of land is just a little too much for these crazy kids!

To start off the weekend, Friday, I took Belle and myself to the urgent care clinic (since I haven't yet had time to find new doctors for us) because I have had this sore throat that just won't stop and Belle had started pulling on her ear again (even though she had just finished antibiotics for an ear infection the previous week). Well, we waited and waited and waited and two hours later (apparently not so urgent), the doc saw us for about 3 minutes and then we waited in the room for another 30 minutes for the nurse to check us out. Turns out, Belle still has an ear infection, so she's back on a new kind of antibiotics for 5 days. And apparently the cure for a sore throat that has lasted 4 weeks is "plenty of fluids and rest". Really, Doc??? You think so?? THAT'S going to happen... anyway, Belle is doing much better now; one more day of antibiotics! And today she came home with another bite on her arm - she got one on her second to last day at the old daycare too... she must just bring the biters out of the woodwork! I sure hope she doesn't turn into one because of all the bites she's getting!

I told you about Elwood's little thunderstorm incident last week, but Thursday evening, I was chasing him down prying his mouth open to retreive the trash he had stolen from the bathroom and discovered that he had managed to break a bunch of his teeth while being the doofus that he is... Jake had a vet appointment Saturday for his annual vaccinations, so I called to schedule Elwood at the same time (and since we had been our new house all of 4 days at that point, I have not had time to find another vet), so I just took them to our normal vet in Annapolis (not a 40 minute drive, going 15 mph over the speed limit all the way). The vet examines Elwoods mouth and makes a referral to the doggie dentist and says he'll probably need a root canal or extraction (which I already knew from doing my research the night before), so Elwood is put on antibiotics and pain killers for 2 weeks until I can get him in to the doggie dentist. So, we get home and a couple hours later, Jake starts limping around. I checked his leg to see if it was sore maybe where they gave him his shot, but I wasn't sure WHERE they gave him his shot because they took him out of the room to do it (which is normal at this place and that's cool by me). I called to ask them where he got his shots, but apparently he didn't actually GET any shots... just got the boardatella vaccine (which is a vaccine they just shoot up their noses) and they took blood. So, I just keep an eye on it and see what's up... Sunday, he won't put any pressure on it and now his foot is all red and swollen. I iced it a couple times, but figured it wasn't an EMERGENCY and didn't really feel like paying Sunday Emergency care fees, so I called today and took him in this evening after work... Back to Annapolis we go! So the doc takes some x-rays and didn't find any broken bones, but we DID get to see the interesting x-ray of his two-toed foot! (Our little Jacob Two-Toes now has a very swollen one toe... poor guy!) But she DID see a puncture on the pad of his foot that Nick and I couldn't see. So, she put HIM on antibiotics and anti-inflamatory meds for 2 weeks...

That makes 3 "kids" on antibiotics and Elwood is going to the doggie dentist on Wednesday...

And that, my friends, is today's news from the Funny Farm.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

House Drama

Well, we are finally moved in!!! I hoe you aren't looking for pictures here, because you aren't going to get any yet! We had a very trying day yesterday... Here is our drama for the day...

We both took the day off because we had so much that we had to do. So, the cleaning lady came at 8:30 and brought her 22 year old daughter to help her out (which was great! Should move faster then!). Well, they didn’t really clean anything out… they vacuumed all the cupboards and everything instead of wiping them out… I don’t think they scrubbed the toilets or showers or anything (I wasn’t really WATCHING them because I had a million other things to do), but when I was putting my dishes away last night, the cupboards were still all dusty and nasty. When I gave Belle a bath, there was still fuzz and dust in the tub, so I just did a really quick wipe down with a wash cloth (because 1. she was already naked and ready for her bath and 2. I don’t know where my damn cleaning supplies are yet)… So… that cleaning lady = FAIL!!!!

The pool guy was scheduled to come at 8am – he actually showed up a couple minutes early and we weren’t back from dropping Belle off yet, but he just went back and did his thing, which was AWESOME! BUT the pool cover has a bunch of water and algae and tadpoles on it so he had to pump that off so he put the pump on the cover and let it run and the water level was low, so he put the hose in to get that going… so he came back about 2:00 and there was still a bunch of water on the cover and the water level hadn’t gone up much at all… Then he realized there was a hole in the cover, so all the water we were putting in was being pumped out… So we filled it to where it needed to be and they are coming back today to pull the cover off, clean it, patch it and clean the pool. So HOPEFULLY we have a working pool today!!! Right now, there are a million tadpoles in the water and a pile of critter bones on the second step. Pool guy = A-/B+ for taking charge, finding problem and coming back to fix it.

The Direct TV guy was scheduled 8-12. Noon comes and no Direct TV guy. So, Nick calls and he says “I’m running late, I’ll be there around 3:00.” Mind you – we still have 2-3 loads of stuff that needs to be picked up from the old house 40 MINUTES AWAY! So, it’s not like we can just run there really quickly and get a load and bring it back… So anyway, the cleaning lady finishes around 3:00 and Nick calls the Direct TV guy back and gets no answer. So he calls back every half hour or so and finally gets through at 5:30 and the guy says he’ll be there in 30 minutes… So he finally shows up at 6pm (10 hours late!!!!) and is there until 11:30 PM!!!!!!! And THEN he starts fishing around looking for a tip because it’s so late… yeah… I don’t think so dude. You show up 10 HOURS late and you get NOTHING!!!! And he kept us up several hours past what we wanted to be up to and on top of that, because we were waiting for that guy, we couldn’t go get the rest of our stuff at the old house, which is being cleaned today and now we are going to have to make multiple trips tonight because they are putting new carpet in tomorrow!!!!!!! GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR! Oh, and the best part?? The guy didn’t even finish!!! He didn’t even get the cable run to the living room! He spent 3 hours putting the damn satellite on the roof and 2 hours trying to figure out how to get the cable into the crawlspace!!!!! Direct TV Guy = FAIL!!!

BUT we are all happy at the new place. Belle is definitely happier! She loves running outside with the dogs and running through the house and finding all the new stuff and hiding on me. J The really surprising thing is that both nick and I completely underestimated this space. We both thought it was so much smaller than it is and as we look at it, we are going “Oh my goodness! These rooms are HUGE!” and the pool especially… we both thought it was pretty small… but it’s really quite large!

Monday, July 12, 2010

A Trip Down Elwood Lane

For those of you not familiar with Elwood or the book Marley and Me, this may not be nearly as good of a trip...

Four (very long) years ago, we got this adorable little puppy and decided to call him Elwood. Those beautiful little blue puppy eyes and all that extra saggy baggy skin... Well, how could you not love him? And so he was adorable and snuggly and lovey... for a couple days... Little did we know that Elwood was full of piss and vinegar... and I'm talking - full to the brim... You can practically smell it coming out of his kennel... (oh wait... that WAS piss coming out of his kennel!)
A few short months after we brought him home, he began doing some crazy things... At first, we thought it was cute and then it was just strange and then just frustrating!!! About that time, I read the book 'Marley and Me' and realized I was not living with this so called "Elwood" - I was living with Marley's twin... I should have expected it. The evil face as he was beating up on Sophie the first weekend we had him should have been the first clue...

Or perhaps destroying his blanket a couple weeks later??? Nope. He still had us fooled with those adorable little puppy eyes!
I believe this was about the time I realized - this dog is not normal! Look at those green demon eyes...So, as time went by, Elwood began doing more and more strange things very akin to what Marley had done in the book - from jumping and knocking people down to challenging the professional dog trainers to bouncing like a kangaroo. Things were tough, but after the "2 week" training session (that turned into 7), we were making some big strides! Then we moved to Annapolis.

Car rides were not really his thing anyway - but after being sedated for 15 hours and stuffed in a tiny little car to travel across the country, car rides got worse. He started getting anxious in the car to the point where he even jumped out the window one day! Thankfully, we were at the park and getting ready to park and a nice man ran over and pushed him back in the window before he strangled himself on the leash.

However, the move to Maryland was tough on him - he was used to running in the yard all the time and suddenly all three of us were crammed into a 600 sft apartment with no place to move. We decided to start taking him to doggy daycare a couple times a week. He was loving it and was doing great! Until he got bit by another dog and ended up with 26 stitches which got infected and turned into a gigantor abscess.
Needless to say, the poor guy was not allowed to be active for two weeks... in Elwood terms - had to be sedated for two weeks and had to keep a shirt on to keep him from chewing on the wound. After that, things started getting REALLY crazy. This dog started getting aggressive toward other dogs and eventually toward strange people. And the anxiety started getting really bad. He panicked and barked all day when we left for work. We got him a bark collar (which is now completely useless because he doesn't care about the shock). He plowed through the screen window one day to chase a squirrel across the sidewalk... and he really just needed space to roam!!! So, we eventually moved to a little bigger place with a little backyard and to top it all off, we got him a Jake to play with... And a few months later, an Isabelle.
The anxiety and aggression started getting worse and worse and finally, we had to call in some more professionals. We now have some trainers who are with us for his lifetime and they have been great. However, we haven't needed them in several months because things have been going relatively smoothly... To the point where we could trust both dogs to be out during the day while we were at work. This was good for about a month... And then one day there was a thunderstorm... And we came home to discover the carpet ripped up in front of our bedroom where Elwood had panicked and tried to get into our room... Sooooooo... Back to the kennels they go during the day.
Oh - one other thing I forgot to mention... One evening, we were sitting in our little apartment and it was storming TERRIBLY outside. LOUD thunder, tons of lighting and rain so heavy you couldn't see the apartments across the sidewalk. THIS was this day that Elwood became terrified of both thunder and RAIN! This dog will not go to the bathroom if it is raining. He will hold it for days and even then, will typically only go outside if we shove him out.
Back to today. This morning - Nick puts the dogs in their kennels and we head out for the day. We had a busy evening ahead because we had to drop the truck off to get a bed liner installed so Nick came home quickly to let the dogs out... And greeting him when he comes in is a very, very submissive "I've-done-something-terribly-wrong" Elwood... Turns out, there was a thunder storm today... turns out, the rain the last couple days has kept him from going to the bathroom... turns out, dogs can't REALLY hold it for 3 days... turns out, dogs don't like sitting in their own poo... and turns out steel kennels don't hold back dogs terrified by storms...
The best part is, because we are moving out, the landlords are bringing people through to see the place, so we have to have them kenneled... It also turns out, duct tape works on dog kennels!!!