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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Boot camp.

At 4:15 this morning Maddie woke Kev and asked him to take her outside. She crawled back into bed with us and kept me awake for an hour with her gurgling tummy.

That sound is all-too-familiar to us. It means she's having tummy troubles. It means we spend time and money at the vet getting her tested for everything under the sun because she won't eat and she won't drink and she won't poop and the gurgling won't stop.


Last time we went through this ordeal, nothing was found to indicate illness. We were given doggy pepto-bismal and sent on our merry way. We integrated a new diet that included allergy-conscious dog food. That, combined with sporadic use of pepto, seemed to solve the problem. Maddie became an avid eater again. And a good pooper.

But this morning she continued to gurgle and ask to be taken outside. She didn't know why her tummy felt the way it did, and it kept translating into a need for a bathroom break that didn't produce any results. It's exhausting. I didn't doze off again until nearly 6am. I tried feeding her a handful of food to settle her stomach. Kev gave her pepto.

Unfortunately my alarm wasn't set for this morning. So add to that my overall exhaustion from having been up all night with Maddie and it wasn't a good start. Maddie wouldn't get up with me as usual for her breakfast. She didn't trot to the front window to take a look at the world before going back to bed. She just curled up at Kev's feet and looked at me.

I consider these experiences with Maddie as boot camp. She's getting me ready for the real deal. The feelings of helplessness regarding unknown ailments. The sleep deprivation. The grumpiness. She also lets us experience the good things too. The cuddles. The kisses. The reassuring feeling that she'll always love me and Kev no matter how many mistakes we make.

I'm just really grateful we didn't have to clean up a poop-explosion or spit up this morning. I'm not ready for that quite yet.

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