Originally posted 12/30/07
Yes, our pug, Ginger, is a saint. She will go down in the annals of our family as the best dog ever. But she is having some major end of life issues and they’re driving me NUTS! She will be 10 in February, which isn’t THAT old for a pug, but she just isn’t in the best of shape. Besides her eye and respiratory issues, she has a degenerative spine problem. Yes, all of this stuff has a real name, but when your vet is shooting the names off one right after the other, it’s a little hard to keep up!
Her spine problem seems to be getting worse. She doesn’t act like she’s in any pain and when she’s awake (those two or three hours a day), she’s just as happy as can be. But she has problems standing up in the bathtub (more on that later), she can’t go up and down stairs anymore and her back legs just don’t want to work right all the time. The back legs have gotten quite a bit worse over the last couple of weeks.
And she stinks. I mean horrible, putrid stinking. She was losing her hair in patches that resembled leopard spots. Baths weren’t really helping the smell – it was so frustrating. When I took the dogs in for their vaccinations I talked to the vet about the smell/hair loss issues. He assured me it was food allergies. Great! So I walked out of there much poorer thanks to the hypo-allergenic dog food and medicated shampoo. The shampoo works great. It cuts her stink down to nothin’. For a few days that is, then it’s back to feeling like I live in a garbage dump.
She’s lost a lot of the hair on her stomach and insides of her legs. After the New Year, I’m calling the vet. It’s gotten a bit better, but it’s been a month and I’m getting a little sick of the twice weekly baths I have to give her just to be able to breathe. And of course washing all the dog beds (yes we have two dogs and four beds – you can thank my mom for me). Did I mention her bottom lip also turns red and gets really swollen? And she’s losing the hair on her tail? Just the sight of that is enough to give you nightmares.
Let’s just say when we bought the cutest little 11 week old pug you’ve ever seen, I never in a million years thought I’d be dealing with all of this down the road. Did I also mention she has diarrhea? And her spine problem only complicates that and sometimes she doesn’t make it outside in time. Like when I had to take Tyler to the hospital. And this morning. And tonight. Maybe it’s the end of the road for Ginger. I don’t know. Maybe I wouldn’t feel so bad if her mind wasn’t still 100%. Like maybe if I thought she was losing it I wouldn’t have such a hard time maybe putting her down. I don’t know.
Well, if you’ve made it this far in my “gripe-o-blog” I’m very impressed. My thoughts are kind of scattered now about the dog . . . . . WHY does this stuff always happen on a weekend or during a holiday?