Writing is like being able to put life into a snow globe. It takes the things that are too big and scary and reduces them into a form that I can put away when I want and look at from a distance. It also takes all that’s good in life and captures it into something I can take out when I want and look at close up and keep forever. It makes the bad things into something I can hold…and the good things into something I can hold onto. Both help so much that I need that little souvenir of life.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

New Leash on Life

A while back, I mentioned that our 15-year old dog had a large, benign eye growth that the vet said couldn’t be removed because a general anesthetic was too risky. It grew to be so enormous, it looked like he was missing an eye. He was pawing and rubbing at it constantly, not just because it was obstructing his vision, but because it was irritating the eye itself. He’d even occasionally rub parts of it off, which would buy him a few days of semi-relief. It also meant he bled all over his eye, us, and the house. I can’t imagine the constant discomfort he must've had.

It just happened that I found another vet who thought he could sedate Buddy enough to cauterize the growth with a local anesthetic, but on the day of the procedure, I got a call. After taking a better look, the vet realized that the thing was rooted in too massively for cauterization. It would have to be cut out under the riskier general anesthetic.

Fortunately this vet and his associate have both worked at emergency clinics. He assured me they were “pretty good with” anesthetics. Buddy not only made it through the surgery, but he did so well that the vet gave him a partial tooth cleaning (free of charge) and a good nail clipping. If only he’d given our rather dandruffy dog a bath….

One day after eye surgery
 That was one week ago. It was clear almost immediately that Buddy was much happier, even with his eye shaved, swollen and stitched together. Now the swelling is almost gone, and Buddy plays with toys and wags his tail again. He pranced yesterday. Pranced!

Six days after eye surgery

Many, many thanks to Dr. Brad Waltman for improving our dear Budster’s quality of life. And as always, thank you so much for your thoughts and prayers!

Friends are God’s way of taking care of us. ~ Anonymous


  1. What a cutie he is! Such a relief it must be to see your furry pal feeling better, and how wonderful for Buddy at this stage in his life that he's able to prance! :) So happy for you.

  2. I'm so happy for Buddy, and for you of course, Tammy. That last photo is wonderful.
    Our Lindy is going to be having surgery soon and I hope hers is as successful as Buddy's.
    — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  3. First of all, what a clever title.

    Secondly, I am so glad Buddy is better. We worry so much (and rightly so) when they get older and have to endure surgery, but apparently Buddy has lots more living to do.

    Third, he has such character in his face. The scruffy face, the white wisps here and there. He is charming!

    Glad to hear he's well enough to prance. (But hey, he's a guy. Try to think of some verb a little more macho than "prance," please.)

  4. Thanks so much to all of you! Lisa, your blog post today is just a riot. And Kay, will keep fingers crossed for Lindy. Hoping it's nothing too serious. Sioux, you are so funny. How 'bout if I say he "walked in a somewhat jaunty fashion?" Actually he tried to run, too, but since his inner ear problems, he crashes into walls when he does that. But "crashes" sounds plenty manly, huh?!

  5. Awww, what a sweetie. I'm glad he's doing better. Give him extra hugs and love!

  6. It's good to hear that Buddy is so much happier. Thank goodness for your clever vets.

  7. Hi Tammy,
    Buddy is such a sweet looking guy. So glad he is feeling better--and prancing around!

  8. It's so importan to have a really good vet. We have one, and we adore him!! Glad Buddy's recovering so nicely!!

  9. Way to go Dr. Waltman! I think I know my vet better than I know my own doctor. Glad to hear Buddy is doing so well. Maybe if you teach him to wag his tail round and round it will counter act the inner ear?! :D
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

  10. Tammy, that's wonderful! Surgery is especially risky with senior dogs, but it sounds like this vet knew what he was doing. So glad Buddy is feeling better...and prancing!


  11. I am glad he is doing so much better! We are on our second dog as a family-at first I didn't want another because it felt like a betrayal, but a house without a dog is just too quiet and I'm a mother of two...

  12. Glad that Buddy is doing better and that you had a wonderful vet. I have some friends who have a dog that looks very much like Buddy...and his name is Buddy, too. :) Cute!


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