"All righty then. My vet is going to kill me!" But I think I've mentioned on this very blog that I am Blessed with the best vets in the world. "Bring her right in," said Gail. Chad came back out of his house with a wad of cash for the vet visit and the bag of puppy food. He wouldn't take no for an answer. Deb volunteered to come along. The dog didn't make a sound as we drove.
Rennie opened the crate door, amidst my warnings that I didn't know if the dog was aggressive, or anything about her at all. The good vet spoke to the dog and let her sniff around the exam room. Eventually and with absolutely no struggle or fuss or notice, Rennie had scanned the dog for a microchip (none), had drawn blood for heartworm (positive), had listened to lungs (clear), palpated belly, (full of worms but not full of puppies), checked gums and teeth (very pale and only around two years old), gave her a dose of Panacur in a bowl of A/D while testing her for food aggression (none, and she sat on command), put a kennel leash around her neck to see her reaction (a little worried but fine), and elicited the first feeble wag of the tail. Deb and I for the most part stood uselessly wiping our tears and marvelling at the skill, the gifts, and talent of Rennie the Remarkable.
Deb said she would keep Elsa until we could find her a forever home. (Oh yes, we started calling her Elsa because she looked so much like the lioness in Born Free.) Deb has cats and an understanding husband with a huge big heart. I worried about the cats, beautiful Maine Coon cats. Deb said she could close off the back kitchen. I stopped and got a collar and a leash, my camera, a dog bowl and some food for sensitive stomachs, and a big foam bed. (Recognise your gift, Laurie? Thanks!) We got the collar on Elsa and let her out of the car at Deb's.
Voila! A monstrous big pile of poo! On lead! A miracle! I fingered the whippet sized sandwich ziplock in my coat pocket. "You're going to need bigger than sandwich size, Deb." "We'll get quart sized. Gallon!" she laughed.
And we went back inside. And then there started to be a Change.
Elsa walked up to me, a hint of a wag, and leaned against me accepting my strokes and scratches. Then she walked over to Deb, and lay down next to her, again with a little wag. And her eyes weren't empty. They were coming to life.
I know Deb and her sweet husband Merle have taken on a very sick dog without batting an eye. I know that I am blessed beyond comprehension with the Most Wonderful Veterinary Practice In The World. I know this whole neighborhood will be pulling for Elsa, the way Chad and Kathleen did, without thinking twice.
This was the last picture I took today. What a difference! She started looking at us. Her eyes were no longer empty and dead. Can you see it? She's in there! And I think, from everything I've seen so far, she's a really, really good dog.
[Addendum: the whippets were truly stellar and terribly deprived yesterday. After spending all afternoon in the Great Elsa Caper, I came home, let them out, fed them and took a shower. When I got out of the shower, Bill was in need of his own trip to the human variety of ol' poke and stick, and we spent the evening at the E.R. Bill is FINE. He has some follow up studies to do, and he's going to see his regular doc today. He had his second episode ever of Transient Global Amnesia,
the first being eight years ago. I mention it only because when the E.R. doctor asked Bill who the President was, Bill said, "I don't know but he's a real jerk." That's my Bill!]