We woke up yesterday morning looking like a pile of puppies.  With two standard poodles cuddled up around us, it was evident we’d just slept through still another of our local weatherman’s famous “two dog night” forecasts.   But no matter the temperature, it felt good to have Max home.  We missed him something fierce while he was off getting well at the animal hospital.  But for Maddie, it was more like fierce unadulterated grief.  Without her faithful sidekick in high jinks, our home grew quiet as a tomb, as the sight of our sad dog gave me fresh insight into that oft used phrase….‘doggone’ lonesome.

 

So it wasn’t surprising to find Maddie holding vigil at our backdoor when we returned home with Max.  Can I tell you that it was an absolute honor to bear witness to their family reunion?  I just felt glad to be alive when I saw her leap for joy and as she performed her full bag of flying circus tricks to welcome home her prodigal ‘son’.  But how in the world had we come to this place?  Even now we’re not sure.  One moment Max was his bouncy self and in the next he had transformed into this big bear rug covering our floor.  Somehow, our three-time immunized puppy had contracted parvo, something the vet had never seen or heard of in his twenty years of practice.  But it was something else the vet said that really grabbed my attention.   

“But that’s why I’ve got a veterinary practice.

I’ll always be in practice.  I’ll never be perfect.”

Though we’ll never know the ‘how’s’ and the ‘whys’ of it, we are grateful to have two silver linings from our sad puppy dog tale.  The first is the assurance that Max will be as good as new.  And the second was this guy providing the assurance—because after months of searching, we had luckily stumbled upon this humble OSU-trained vet—who was perfect to us mostly because he knew he wasn’t.

 

So it’s another happy ending where the good puppy wins.  Maddie is happy.  She no longer has to play the part of the grieving ‘lone ranger’.  Max is not.  He’s sweating bullets as he’s figured out he’s in recovery–not from parvo—but from his strong addiction to eating rocks.  And for the medical record, he’s none too happy about the doc’s recommended treatment, as already he’s wearing a new black muzzle for his backyard escapades.  Following the trail blazed by his poodle sister, it looks like Max will become the newest masked rider of the west, as he begins to play the– “who was that masked man?”— hero of yesteryear.  Hi Ho Silver…Away!  Max is back in the saddle…. and with grateful hearts we watch for the unfolding adventures…. of Mesta Park’s newest Lone Ranger who rides again.    

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