This afternoon, I ran to the vet’s clinic for the third time this week. Patches will live but if I have to hear her HOWL one more time while they clean and apply medicated cream to her, um, area, I may shrivel up and die. Seriously, it is the saddest noise. It does not sound like the kind of noise a dog can possibly be capable of making. The first day, she went with the vet’s assistant quite willingly. The second day, when the assistant came out to get her, Patches crawled under the bench I was sitting on, and when we pulled her out, she planted her feet on the floor and stood there staring at me with a desperate look on her face, as if to say, “don’t make me go with her!” It’s enough to break your heart. I gave her a pat and said, “it’s okay, baby girl, you’ll be all right,” all the while squeezing my legs together at the thought of how she must feel.
I commented to the vet’s assistant yesterday, “you must see more of this dog than any other animal.” She said, “Aw, no, but we’re all women around here so we’re certainly a little more sympathetic to her plight. Whenever she comes in, we all just cringe and want to cross our legs for her.”
Today I had to pick up some pills for her, both an antibiotic for her infection, and a refill of the pills for the Cushings Disease (her brain tumour dealie). Those pills are ridiculously expensive (I think my dad worked them out one time to over $6/pill). The assistant said to me, “these are pretty expensive, I don’t know if anyone warned you?” I said, “oh, I know. It’s going on my parents’ credit card, so I’m not fussed.” She laughed and said, “oh okay. I just know some people are astounded at the cost.” I said, “yeah… but you know my dad and this dog…” She said, “oh I know. They are so cute together.”
And they are pretty adorable. Our old dog, Scrappy, was a momma’s girl, and was completely attached to my mother. Zoey, our border collie, is the same. Patches, though, is a man’s dog, and she’s my dad’s dog. She ADORES him, and like I said earlier this week, she gets very upset when he’s not around, and when he returns she does her best to let him know she’s pissed by ignoring him for a few days. But she can only resist her love for him for so long, and eventually she has to go back to adoring him and talking to him and “annoying” him with her incessant demanding to go outside (or what he THINKS is her demanding to go out and the rest of us just think is her demanding his attention).
The bottom line is, my dad loves this dog more than he loves any of us – he claims that she sits on the Board of Directors of his business and that he’s leaving everything to her when he dies – and the ONLY worry I’ve had while my parents have been away is that something would happen to Patches and I’d have the horrible task of breaking the news to my parents. It figures that we’d have three vet visits in three days, but since Patches is currently lying on a blanket at my feet, I’ll take it, because it means I only have to keep her alive another two days before my parents get home and her wellbeing is no longer my responsibility.
Because, I kid you not, we could be robbed blind on Monday and the house could burn down on Tuesday, I could have my car stolen on Wednesday and be attacked in the street on Thursday, and there would be no cause for panic as long as on Friday I could start a conversation with my dad by saying, “don’t worry, Patches is fine.”
It’s a good thing I love Patches nearly as much as he does. Hence the reason she’s lying on a KING SIZE COMFORTER on my bedroom floor right now, because god forbid she sleep on the couch downstairs like she normally does. No, while the parents are away, Patches demands a bedroom. And I deliver, because when it comes to this dog, I’m pretty much as big a sap as my dad is. And that’s pretty bad.