The Rabies Rotation

It all started a couple of weeks ago.

When we leave for the day, the chihuahua goes into her crate while the big dog Buddy gets to roam around the first floor, guarding the house should prowlers want to steal dirty dishes and piles of clean laundry.

I should have known something was wrong when he started peeing in the house. Two times and he started going into the garage. He’s a barker, and a scary one at that, so the garage was our only choice.

Then the seizures returned. One right after another on a Thursday night. No subbing the following day. No second job the following weekend. The vet advised me to give him another dose of his meds which ceases the seizures.

The next evening he had one every couple of hours. By the time the third one occurred, the youngest L was already out for the night at 9 in the evening. There was no one I could call to watch the kids while I drove the dog to the 24-hour animal hospital. They would not let me “drop off the dog” while the kids were in the car and I don’t dare leave them alone in the house or in the car.

So I watched Buddy pace and pace the perimeter of the house. His mind wouldn’t rest, couldn’t rest. He looked around as if he were paranoid, hearing voices, confused. Every couple of hours he would have a seizure followed by complete loss of bodily fluids. There was no pattern to the click click click of his claws over the wood laminate floors all night.

I went through three rolls of paper towels, countless washcloths, a bath towel, and a bottle of eco-friend pet stain cleaner.

Buddy was gone for a couple of days and I was exhausted. The kids kept asking, “When is Buddy going to be better?” The middle one cried every time she realized he was gone. Buddy was their real life Pillow Pet after all.

I was so exhausted that I contemplated life without him if we had to put him down. I was unrecognizable to him and as my husband said, I am “Buddy’s person.” How could I even think that?

I was a bundle of nerves, without any real sleep for two nights in a row. I’ve experienced a lot of stress in my life and no matter what it may be, it feels the same. Stress to me is like hot weather. I don’t care if it’s an uncomfortable 90 degrees or 115 degrees– it’s still effing hot!

Likewise with stress. It could be me being late with a utility bill or getting a phone call saying that Buddy bit an animal hospital employee and they called animal control. It’s still effing stressful!

The latter actually happened and the stress cycle began again. Did I remember to get Buddy his annual rabies shots? If I didn’t, was I going to jail? Would I get fined? Would I get a phone call to explain to my pastor why I was in the slammer and not teaching Kinderchurch?

Thankfully Buddy was current on his shots and I celebrated with a brownie. I wasn’t going to jail. I wasn’t going to get fined. The dog didn’t have rabies. No one at the animal hospital got rabies from my dog.

My husband R said he wished he was here to help me while I took care of the dog. I wish he was here too.

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