Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Bug, My Gorgeous Baby Chihuahua

I am a dog person. Always have been, always will be. I have always had dogs as pets for as long as I can remember. Sure, I like cats OK. I would not call myself a cat person, but I do like cats. I love birds and bunnies to pieces, too.   Never in my wildest imaginings would I picture myself the slave of a chihuahua. I have always been a fan of the big dopey dogs, or the kick ass dogs with bad reps and swore up and down that I hated little bitty ankle biter dogs with no use in the world other than to be hateful and yappy. Then on December 26, 2011, my friend and former coworker Hope announced that her chihuahua, ChiChi, had puppies. I do not know what black magic or voodoo or hoodoo spell she wove into those words, but I went nutso. I HAD to have a chihuahua puppy! From the pictures Hope showed on her iphone, I chose the little brown and white spotted beauty with the long, skinny melty heart on her head. She was not only the biggest puppy, she was obviously the smartest and most beautiful. Yes, I COULD tell just from a pic. I came up with many names between then and the day she was officially named BUG. Why Bug? I do not know. It was a suffix to endearments like Bed, Kissy, Rug, Snuggle, etc. All ending with Bug. So Bug stuck.
I brought my doll baby home on a very cold Sunday. She was going to be six weeks the next day. Not four days of having her and our lab, Simon, stomped on her little bitty head. Her head was so swollen, her eyes would not open and all she could do was scream. I do not mean cry. I mean scream. My husband called me at work and we met at the vet. She gave us the option of putting her down or getting her to a 24 hour pet ICU. She was given a steroid shot for the swelling and I could not take the screaming. I requested that she be put down. My husband said no, that she deserved a chance to live.
At the ICU, she was given pain meds and she calmed down. The next 24 hours would be critical and her fate would be decided within that time. We went home and the clinic called us every few hours or so to give a status update. The xray showed no fracture, she was on pain meds and sleeping with an I.V. and oxygen.
I picker her up on Friday after work. Bug was sent home with five days worth of pain meds which was to be given every 12 hours. I can tell you, that first night home, she got more than that. She whimpered and cried in her sleep all night. I held her in my arms and to my chest like a newborn babe and rocked her and sang to her and prayed over her. I prayed to St. Francis of Assisi, I prayed to St. Christopher, to St. Melangell, St. Michael, St. Anyone Who Would Hear My Plea. I called into work the next day. I was exhausted. About nine Saturday morning, she woke up, took two hops on the bed toward my husband and wagged her tail. I knew she was going to make it for sure. I called in to work that whole next week, and never went back. I needed to quit anyway for many reasons but did not have the guts. My little girl helped me do that. I was not leaving her for nothing. Throughout that week I massaged her facial bones to get the edema down, and I pressed on her eyes very gently to ease the pressure in them and on her sinuses, which would begin to drain with compression of her eyes. Finally only a funny looking bump on her head remained. She has a molera and I believe that is the only reason she survived the trauma as it allowed the skull plates to expand with the pressure. On Thursday, exactly one week later, I took her to my parents' house for an introduction. My dad likes the breed and has fond memories of his grandmothers chi named Bonnie, the sweetest dog ever according to him (her mate Clyde "was the most evil bastard ever, may he rot in hell"). I got a stern lecture from both parents about taking care of her (I am 37, still getting lectures). I do not know if my dad prayed for her or not. He is not on the best terms with The Almighty. However, that very night, that ugly alien lump on her head smoothed out completely. Her sinuses drained like mad and she sneezed and snorted all evening.

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