The Brindle Dog went to the vet for her annual checkup this evening. She was pretty sick in the spring, and I always worry about her. She’ll be twelve years old in a couple of weeks, and I am trying to enjoy every day with her while also preparing myself for the end. But she’s not dead yet, and part of continued life means regular vet visits. So this evening I lifted her into the car and we headed over to visit Dr. Beggs at St. Vital Veterinary Hospital for her annual checkup.
The news is good. I mean, she’s old and getting older, and every bit of her is aging. Her eyes are worsening and she’s got a cataract. Her hearing is going. Her sense of smell isn’t what it used to be. She’s starting to lose muscle tone. She’s full of lumps and bumps and warts and cysts and lipomas. Her teeth are wearing down to stumps (although all the chewing keeps them remarkably clean). Her stamina isn’t what it used to be.
But aside from all those normal things, she’s doing well. Her heart is strong; she’s still engaged with the world and interested in people and treats and tricks. She races around the yard chasing sticks and harassing the Fluffy Dog. She’s still pretty flexible and agile for an oldster. And although she is more anxious than she used to be (in ways that seem pretty clearly connected to the vision and hearing issues), she is basically a happy, interactive, curious, loving old dog who is always ready to go on the next adventure.
Her glucosamine ran out a while back and I can see that her mobility is affected (jumping into the car is not always successful anymore, hence the lifting, which she detests). So I’m going to restart her on that. And the Fluffy Dog will start on it as well, since his recent x-rays showed that his left hip isn’t as perfect as one would like.
All in all, a satisfactory visit. Dr. Beggs and Iris the vet tech spoiled the Brindle Dog with pets and treats, and they took all the time I needed to answer my questions and listen to what I wanted to tell them about my good old girl.
See in the picture how her tongue kind of hangs out to the left? Her left lower canine was removed after she snapped it in an excess of enthusiasm (story in this blog post). You can see in the picture that even her paws are going grey. Is that adorable or what?
I know I say this about every dog I’ve ever had, but this old Brindle Dog is seriously the best dog ever.
Edit (Nov 18 2015, early morning): I forgot to mention that she has also gained back seven pounds since she was so sick in the spring! Yay!