Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Buddy Love

Jay and I have two adorable dogs, the nearly 12 year old Bailey (aka Buddy Boy) and the four and half year old Edie (aka Beadie and Beans and all sorts of other names).  Bailey had a very rough 2009 (as did a lot of us in my family).  He got an eye infection in August that wouldn't heal and had to have a corneal graft done on Labor Day because his eye was perforating.  I thank God for Dr. Anne England at Vestridge Animal Clinic for recognizing the problem and getting him to the beautiful Dr. Jana Korsch at Veterinary Eye Care in Bessemer, who spoke sweetly to him and managed to save his eye.  Then, two horrible days before Christmas, he was attacked by a much bigger dog while playing outside and required a week-long stay at the vet school in Auburn and a bunch of stitches.  If he hadn't been wearing a Santa suit with a big fuzzy hood, he probably would have died.  (No joke.)  He's always been finicky about eating; he doesn't like it when his collar hits the plate, so he only eats around the edge and then 'grrs' until someone rotates the plate.  Same thing when the water bowl gets around half empty.  The past year or so he's taken to waking me up in the middle of night to be put on the bed because he can't jump up on it anymore.  Needless to say, he's a pretty needy little dog.

We recently did away with our bed frame and put our boxspring and mattress in the floor so that our aging Buddy Boy could jump on the bed without assistance and jump off without injuring himself (he's missing a disc in his back, and we'll do whatever we have to to make sure that back stays uninjured). He's a very happy boy now and can easily get on the bed to do that adorable rooting around in the covers thing that he loves.  (He did it again for me today at lunch because he loves me and wants me to be happy.)

And yet I miss his little whine at 3 a.m. every morning when he would want on the bed.  He needed me, and he knew that I would unfailingly and without complaint (and often with a giggle) pick him up and snuggle him next to my side.  I miss knowing that his inevitable collar shake would turn into an inevitable series of snorts which would turn into an inevitable series of 'grrs' and then an inevitable whiny bark.  We were a team, and even though Jay is truly his 'person', it was always me that he came to when he needed a lift.  I truly miss this neurotic bedtime ritual, but I know it's for the best, especially since I need sleep and he needs a happy spine.  All of this just goes to show you (and me) that, as needy as this crazy little dog is, I still need him far more than he will ever need me.

My sweet Bailey on the beloved Green Blanket.  All the dogs love this thing.

Jay and Bailey Christmas 2008.  This was the Santa suit that saved him; it has a lot of tiny holes in it now where the Enemy Dog's teeth barely made it through.  Dog clothes don't seem as ridiculous when they save your dog's life.

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