Saturday, October 19, 2013

Update 2 of 2... Lucy Lou!

This past year has been full of challenges for my little Lucy Lou.  There is something about Florida that makes her itchy and scratchy all over- I am quite sorry to say.  We made several trips to see a dermatologist, with absolutely no positive results.  (Which was very good for emptying out Lucy's piggy bank, but not much else.) After 3 months of very expensive medications, and lots of frustration,  we went back to our regular vet (have I mentioned that both of my kids love their new vet?) for a very long consultation.  Our solution was somewhat out of the box, and not necessarily the solution that I was hoping for, but Lucy is comfortable, and that's really all that matters.  I just want a happy dog, with as little long term harm to her body as possible.  After months of being covered in a staph infection, and being itchy almost 24 hours a day, Lucy is hardly itching at all... And that's all I can hope for.

I am highly suspicious that the tough Florida grass is partly to blame for Lucy's allergies, although I'm sure there are other things to blame well.  We have discovered that scrambled eggs, make her break out in hives- not boiled eggs though.  (I'm still scratching my head on that one!)

Lucy is as charming as ever, although I must say it is becoming quite evident that my little girl is no longer a puppy.  Just last week, circumstances beyond our control meant that Lucy spent the day free from her kennel.  I worried the whole way home about what mischief might have found Lucy... or what mischief Lucy might have found!  But, no need to worry, no mischief found Lucy that day.  As much as it saddens me that my baby boxer is obviously not a baby anymore, I'm so proud of her!  Being able to be free in the house is a big step, and one that she's obviously earned.  Since that day, I've left her twice, with no problems when I returned home.

While Lucy is still prone to moments of boxer silliness, she is really becoming quite a little lady... if you consider drooling to the point of making bubbles ladylike, that is!  I will say that this little boxer has an intense sense of smell, and she most certainly loves her pizza!

One of the things that I've grown to appreciate the most about this new grown up Lucy is how calm, peaceful and reflective she can be.  One of her new favorite past times is watching tv.  She can sit for hours on the couch just watching, I'm starting to think she really understands what they're saying!  I wonder if she things they're talking to her?

Earlier this week, she sat on the sofa listening to CNN and the talk of the government shutdown negotiations... I swear she was madder than a hornet, but maybe that was just my imagination.  I know that there were plenty of boxer sighs.

Many mornings, I will grab a cup of coffee and pull up a seat next to her on the sofa.  I love sitting there with her!  Once I sit down, she'll move around until she's as close to me as she can possibly be without sitting on top of me!  And of course, I take advantage of the opportunity to plant lots of little kisses on top of that soft little boxer head!  I just can't resist her...

As I mentioned yesterday in my "Duke" posting, Lucy has been a very good nurse maid to her "wounded" big brother.  They certainly do love each other, who could ever believe that they haven't been together their whole lives?  They're like two peas in a pod...

This picture was taken earlier this week, Lucy was more than willing to let Duke use her head as a pillow.  It was one of those moments when I felt blessed to have had my camera handy!  I wouldn't have wanted to miss this shot.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Update 1 of 2... Duke

Gasp, I've been in Orlando for a little over a year, and life hasn't gotten any easier in the last year. Every time I turn around there is something else going on... and of course, I keep thinking, "I need to write in my blog...". Guilt consumes me as I've neglected one of my favorite past times over the last year! But, it's not the only thing- I very rarely cook, and I haven't baked anything since Christmas... Hi-ho, Hi-ho, it's off to work I go!

I digress...Life with boxers is as wonderful as ever;   Lucy & Duke are doing wonderful! They enjoy the Florida sunshine more than I ever thought possible. Even Duke who used to hate the heat, has taken to lying in the grass on sunny afternoons when his mama isn't at work.  Some days, I have a hard time getting him inside.  No big surprise for the boy who paws at me until I hit him with the heat from the blow dryer every morning.  But, don't worry, of course, this little boxer mama has a fail proof way to get him out of the heat when it's necessary.  All I have to do, is rattle the lid on the treat jar, and Duke moves as fast a race car at Indy.

Duke is a total mama's boy (and I couldn't be happier!).  This big guy's favorite past time is snuggling on top of his mama.  And as always, he's never far from me when I'm home; if I'm taking clothes out of the dryer, Duke's right beside me, if I'm taking a shower, Duke's right outside of the shower door, and of course, if I'm in the kitchen, he's right under my feet (which can be very complicated!)  I just love this big guy!  Shh... don't tell anyone, but my 90 pound boxer boy, is a total teddy bear... with a bark that will scare even the meanest toughest UPS guy enough to send him quickly scooting back to his big brown truck!

2 1/2 weeks ago, Duke had surgery to remove the bump on the top of his head.  I hadn't originally planned to do anything with it, all along we were under the impression that it was just scar tissue and nothing more.  But, when Duke saw our new vet here in Orlando for the 1st time, the vet insisted upon removing it.  So, in he went!  I took this picture of him the day after surgery.  Can you tell he was sucking it up?  Of course, he's been spoiled as much as possible, what other choice did I have?

Actually, the lump on his head was something called a dermoid sinus.  It was something that I had never heard of, but it's common in boxers, and is pretty much a birth defect.  Had we chosen to leave it alone, it probably would have just kept growing.  Our vet felt confident in removing it at this point that he could get all of it, and that Duke would only have a tiny scar, not that a scar matters much to us.  He doesn't think it's going to grow back, and thankfully, it wasn't cancerous!  We love Duke scar or no scar!

Duke has been a model patient, even though at times, I know his head was itchy as could possibly be.  He has this funny little dance of sorts that he would do every time his head got itchy.  He would dance around for a while, eventually lie down, and Lucy would come to his rescue, gently licking his head and soothing his itchies.  Thankfully, little Lucy is a gentle licker!

We had hoped to get the stitches taken out on Tuesday, but when we returned to the vet, it just wasn't meant to be.  Vet thought that we should wait another week.  I think I was more upset about it than Duke was, but no point in risking the incision opening up again... so we wait!

Wednesday evening, a soccer ball mysteriously landed in our yard.  Duke was so happy, you would have thought it was a t-bone steak.  I thought he was going to die when the neighbor kid hollered over the fence asking for the ball.  I swear I saw a total look of disappointment on his face...  I tossed the ball over the fence promising Duke a soccer ball of his very own.

On my way home from work the next day, I stopped and bought Duke a bright red soccer ball.  He was so excited, that even the sound of the treat jar opening, wouldn't lure him from the yard and the ball!

If only I had known sooner that Duke would be thrilled to the moon and back with a soccer ball, I would have bought one much sooner!

I promise to be back within the next couple of days with an update on Lucy....