"You're going to have to stay home from work," I yelled through the bathroom door, "There's something wrong with Ray's foot and I'm going to need your help getting him to the vet."
"What?" yelled Gregg.
I yelled again adding, "Ray won't put his back foot down. He's holding it off the floor and won't walk."
Gregg had turned off the water.
"OK," he said, "I'll be down in a minute."
When Gregg got downstairs, Ray was standing in the hallway head down, foot up, looking pathetic.
"When can we take him?" asked Gregg.
"I'll call the vet as soon as they open," I replied.
It was only 6:00 a.m., we had at least an hour and a half to wait.
Using a towel slung under his backend, we helped Ray outside so that he could pee, then helped him back to his spot on the couch.
By 11:00 a.m. we were at the vet. Ray was moving slowly, taking baby steps, his head down. We were shown to an examination room. Ray stood for a while, then stretched his lanky frame flat out on the floor. Dr. Lonam entered.
"Let's stand him up," he said.
We encouraged Ray to his feet. The vet watched him move a bit and then, as Ray tried to lay down again, lifted the dog to the examination table, laying him on his side. Ray was as malleable as putty, stretched out with his head on my arm, not moving a muscle.
Dr. Lonam examined Ray, asking us questions as he manipulated Ray's leg and hip, felt the dog's joints, and looked at his paw. He then took a blood sample and went away.
Ray never moved. I found myself thinking that this is what it would be like at the end. Ray, unmoving and trusting, stretched out on a table as the last injection was prepared. I shook the dark thought away, sure that it was brought on by our recent losses of Moonie and Hugo, and concentrated on comforting the blind hound even though he did not seem particularly distressed.
The vet came back and we discussed potential diagnoses. The blood test was normal and since Ray was fine the previous evening, the possibility existed that he had slipped on an icy patch when he had gone out to pee the night before and pulled some back muscles. He was given an injection for pain and an anti-inflamatory.
"He'll probably throw up within the next ten minutes or so," said the vet as he went off to write up Ray's discharge papers and get us a quantity of anti-inflamatory and pain meds.
We led Ray to the waiting room. Like the previous week at the eye doctor's, Ray stood woozily, his body swaying from side to side, then stretched out on the floor. Minutes later, he roused himself enough to throw up just as Dr. Lonam emerged with the pills.
"That was fast," said the vet as he turned on his heels, left the room, then returned with a roll of paper towels.
He handed me the pills and bent to clean up the dog barf. I pocketed the pills and handed Gregg Ray's leash.
"Why don't you see if you can get him in the car before he passes out. I'll settle up," I said to my lovely husband.
Dr. Lonam gave me instructions as Gregg led the drunk from the room. I paid the bill and went to meet my spouse. The drunk was in the back seat, drooling.
|Where am I?|
The blind dog stood, unmoving. I tried to tempt him with a dog bed placed next to him but Ray was uninterested. I knew what he wanted, so I took him by the collar and led him to his spot on the couch and, with Gregg's help, lifted him onto it.
|Where am I?|
|Where am I?|
|where am i?|