Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Kid ...

Dr. R was very faithful to call me every morning to give me an update on Maggie. He always called her "The Kid" ... maybe that's his way of not having to keep up with the names of all the dogs he cares for.

Maggie's surgery went well and if all things go as expected, I will be able to pick her up on the 20th ... now mind you, she went in on the 4th of January.

It's been pretty lonely without Mags here to give me comfort or I guess I should say to give me something to clean up or fix ... I'm counting the days when I get to go pick her up ... needless to say, I don't realize the post op care she needs when I bring her home ... more to come.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

It's Just For A Little While My Dear Friend...

So, Dr. B told me that my Maggie Mo had a congenital hip condition known as hip dysplasia ... In short, Maggie's hip sockets were "shallow" and they did not properly cover the head of her femurs. He also said that once damage to the ball-and-socket occurs there would be no point of doing surgery. Maggie would develop painful arthritis and she would need pain medication for the rest of her life. He recommended that I consult with Dr. R., a canine orthopedic surgeon. I immediately decided to take Maggie down to VCA All-Care animal hospital in Fountain Valley, CA. There I met with Dr. R.

Now, Fountain Valley is approximately 2-1/2 hrs away from where I live. But Dr. R was recommended and recognized to be the "Father" of the hip surgery and the inventor of the devices that make the surgery possible and successful. So, after checking-in at VCA, Maggie and I met Dr. R. He began to examine Maggie and her x-rays. He spent time with me and Maggie: we went outside so that he could see her walk, we went inside where he examined Maggie's hips and legs (front and rear.) He then explained that Maggie was a good candidate for the surgery. Dr. R was very confident that the "TPO" procedure (tri-pelvic osteotomy) would help Maggie to live a long, happy, and pain-free life. He also explained that Maggie's recovery would require her to stay at the VCA hospital for three to four weeks! Geesh . . . this was gonna be hard on Maggie and me!

I decided to allow Maggie to have the surgery but saying goodbye was very hard for me... although this hospital was everything you would want it to be, it was very painful to put Maggie in her "kennel" and say good-bye ... I know I won't be able to visit her as it's too far for visits ... and of course it would be just as hard to have to leave her each time ... The tears kept flowing down my cheeks on my way back home ... I hope I'm doing the right thing ...

Dear Lord, I know you love animals since you are the creator of them ... protect my Maggie Mo and give me the strength for days to come ...

Sweet Dreams My Maggie Mo ...

Maggie got lots of toys for Christmas ... in fact she got so many, she didn't know which ones she should play with ... I guess she just wanted to sleep on it a while.

We have an appointment to go down south to Fountain Valley (which is approximately 2-1/2 hrs away) for a consultation with the famous Dr. R. For some reason I'm not that worried ... I guess I never gave it much thought what we would be put through ... all I know is that I love this dog of mine and I will do everything I can to make her life enjoyable ... at her age she didn't need any limps or aches, she just deserved the best quality of life possible, at least I thought she did.

ps ... please don't tell me she's just a dog ... (ugh)!

So This Is Christmas ...

Maggie's first Christmas picture. If you look closely at the picture you will see that all the candy canes are at the top of the tree for fear that she may eat them. Maggie is doing well after her surgery from being spayed (you can see in her leg where they had shaved her for the IV), and I decided to go "home" to Phoenix to spend Christmas with my family.

I received a phone call while I was in Phoenix from Dr. B who told me that he had reviewed Maggie's x-rays with Dr. R and that they had confirmed that Maggie had problems with her hips. He wanted me to follow through with Dr. R. (the specialist), and make an appointment for a consultation ... I decided that I would, after all, Maggie is only six months old,

Friday, August 28, 2009

No Puppies For Maggie and Me

Today is December 8, 2007, and Maggie is going in to get spayed ... as much as I would have loved to have puppies, I know that isn't possible. I dropped Maggie off early am and await for the call to pick her up.

I know Maggie is in good hands with her surgery because she has the best vet in the world. Dr. B called me around 3 p.m. and said that during the anesthesia, they checked Maggie's hips (routine procedure) and that her hips were "popping" when they rotated them back and forward. He asked permission to take an x-ray for further evaluation and consultation with himself and Dr. R., a hip specialist, who comes up from Fountain Valley once a month. I agreed to do whatever needs to be done to make sure Maggie is okay .

I picked Maggie up at dusk and of course spoiled her from having her surgery. Lots of instructions to follow but I will make sure that I follow each and every one ... I love my Maggie Mo you know.

McDonalds, Gage and the Screendoor

My son called me today and asked if I would watch the kids while they went out for dinner. No problem, they would stop by McDonald's to pick up some food (because they know Grandma doesn't have anything good in the house), and then come by. I put Maggie outside because she is still a puppy (pushing 50 lbs) and I know she would jump on the kids. "Outside Mags", and I close the screen door.

The kids come in with their bags filled with the aroma of hamburgers and french fries. I started to set them up at the dining room table so they can chow down, but Gage is very apprehensive of Maggie. I assured him that Maggie, as he can see, is outside and won't be bothering him. Now mind you, there is a small tear at the bottom of the screen door and just as soon as they were about to eat, Maggie poked her nose through that tear and then literally ripped her way through to come inside! Oh my gosh, the look on Gage's face was priceless! His eyes got so big! It wasn't funny at that time as I could see "terror" in Gage's eyes, and as much as he likes McDonald's, he was about to heave all of his food over to Maggie. Needless to say, we put her back outside (coaxing with a fry or two) and then closed the glass door. Gage and Aussie got to eat and now I have a screen door to contend with.

Thank you Maggie for ruining my screen door!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

It's Not A Ball, Maggie!

Maggie is a little "spoiled" shall we say and I decided to get a doggie door so she can go in and out all day while I'm at work. The only problem is that it leaves her the living room, dining room, and kitchen all to herself. I bite the bullet and install the doggie door into the slider, (Note to anyone reading this, you loose about half of your doorway when you try to walk out).

I leave for work (hoping for the best), close all the bedroom and bathroom doors and leave lots of toys for Maggie to play with ... a little apprehensive to come home, I open the door and yep, another mess to clean up! Maggie had apparently found a "dirt clod" under those darn bushes that maybe she thought was a ball(?), brought it in the house, and then proceeded to play with this dirt clod ... I had a huge mess to clean up ... In fact it was so bad, I had to pick up the big pieces and sweep the carpet before I could even attempt to vacuum (for fear it would blow up the vacuum) ...

Oh well, it's just another day with Maggie Mo.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

"Hey Number 3, You Wanna Play Some Football?"

Maggie found this football today under the bushes. It's amazing what she is coming up with each day, "Maggie, can you find momma a million dollars under those bushes?" ... Anyway she's enjoying the day playing and, believe it or not, she can put this ball in her mouth and carry it around like it was nothing! Oh by the way, this ball didn't last long either.

"Hey number 3, you wanna play some football with me?" "You can be the running back and I'll just hike the ball to you!" "And another thing, don't forget to ask the water boy to come too!"

Saturday, August 15, 2009

I Love You (More)!

I'm not sure who loves each other more ... all I know is that we're having a good time enjoying our house and yard ... Maggie is saying "Thank you mom for taking good care of me!" "Likewise, if you only knew"...

Playtime In My New Yard!

Maggie is sure enjoying her new yard and it seems that everyday she is finding something new to play with. Today she found this ball that was under the bushes in the backyard. Believe it or not, it was intact when she found it although it didn't take much time for her to destroy it ... that's okay, she is a very happy puppy right now enjoying her big backyard!

Friday, August 14, 2009

One Golden Retriever Dog Named "Maggie"

We did it!

Living in the apartment was nice but Maggie was getting big and needed a yard to play in. So, I came across a 3 bedroom, 2 bath house for rent but the only problem was the owner did not allow pets, geesh. After writing a letter to the landlord and telling him that Maggie and I would respect and take care of his property, he decided to rent this house to me. I signed the lease agreement (can you believe there are nine pages!) and under Part 18 (Pets) it says "Tenant shall keep no animal or pet on or about the premises without the landlord's prior written consent, with the exception of one Golden Retriever dog named "Maggie". Isn't that a kick? I guess no other dog can live here ... Oh, by the way, my landlord is a lawyer ...

First Time Home Alone ...

My boss, a great man, had invited our "team" to his house for an appreciation dinner. Now, since I got Maggie my social life (like I had much of one) has really dwindled. I know that it's my fault because I don't like to leave Maggie alone for very long. I decided that I should probably go for a few hours to show my "team spirit." I come home from work, and Maggie takes me for a walk! I get ready to go to the dinner, and for the likes of me I don't remember why I didn't put her in her crate. I guess that I never really liked to see her in that crate.

After a nice time at the party, and goodbye's were said to my co-workers, I leave to rush back home. A little apprehensive, I'm very glad to be home and see my Maggie (after all, I've never left her alone for this long.) I open the door and, "Oh my gosh, it looks like a war zone!" I see glass all over, my side table was knocked over, the lamp, and everything that was on it is now on the floor (broken into a million pieces.) "Maggie!" ... she's no where to be found. Finally, she peers out from the side of my treadmill and she looks so scared. I felt bad. "It's okay sweetie, Mom's here," so I pet and comfort her to let her know that this mess wasn't her fault. I think she was trying to get a toy from under the table, BUT now I'm up until the wee hours of the night cleaning and vacuuming up this mess!

How frightening her first time home alone must have been. That night, I made a promise to Maggie that I will never leave her alone again ...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

What In the Heck ...?

Yippee, we're on our last round of Clavamox for Maggie's infection and she seems to be coming along good ... I'm so glad because giving pills to a puppy isn't that much fun.

Maggie comes home from "school" and we are out on our walk ... suddenly she starts to do her business and I look down with horror ... "Oh no" ... something is really wrong with Maggie ... she's pooping these large "tumors" ... my heart is just sinking and pounding really fast (I better get a sample). By now it's too late to call the vet and I don't know what's wrong with her. Besides myself, I hurry back to the apartment to find a 24hr. emergency clinic to take her to. After a few phone calls I find out that my little Maggie Mo had found a grape vine at "school" and decided to eat a bunch of grapes (which looked like they were still whole if you know what I mean) ... whew, it wasn't some tumors after all ... man, I really think I'm losing it ...

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Your Dogs Needs ...

So it's a Saturday and I decide to take Maggie to Petco, you know, "where the pets go". We're walking around in there exploring ... alright, so she's pulling me everywhere her little nose can get a sniff. I have absolutely no control of her at this time (what else is knew). All of a sudden this lady, named Maxine (who works there), looks at me and says in a very stern voice "your dog needs obedience class" ... Now whether or not this is true (which I know it is), it kinda hurt. It's like telling someone that your child needs to be disciplined (which no one really wants to admit).

I signed Maggie up, it's a mere $60 for six weeks or eight weeks (I can't remember), or $99 for lifetime classes ... "I'll take the lifetime classes please" ...

On another note ... Terry, if you happen to read this today, "Happy Birthday" ... thank you for all you do for our family ... I know your the doctor in the family and we sometimes tend to lean on you a lot ... just know how much you are loved and how much we appreciate all you do for Momma, Daddy and all of us ... I love you (more), Christy

Those Dreaded Words

Things are going pretty well. I'm a little tired with getting up early in the a.m. and taking Maggie for her walk, off to "school" and work and then rushing back home to walk Maggie ... it's pretty crazy. I'm still trying to "hide" her age where I live (remember, I can't have a dog under one year old at the apartment). When I walk Maggie people would stop and comment how cute Maggie is ... and then those dreaded words would come out of their mouths, "how old is she"? I would just look at them and say, "Oh, she's about a year old" ... yeah, yeah, who was I trying to kid. I look back now at the pictures of her and I know those tenants knew better ... but I also knew she was too cute for anyone to "give her up".

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Okay, Now I Feel Bad

Maggie is getting bigger and bigger. She's outgrown her crate, so I purchased a new one ... this one is HUGE but I'm thinking of the future you know (this new crate is probably double Maggie's size). The crate is in the living room of this 800 square foot apartment (doesn't really fit in the bedroom), so more nights on the floor (but I really don't care).

It's a Saturday morning and my grandsons came over to pay a visit (I'm thinking Gage is 6 and Aussie is 11). Maggie is just jumping all over them ... it's really a 'mad house'. Gage, the youngest, has the cartoons on but Maggie is not leaving him alone, jumping on him, licking his face, biting him with those sharp puppy teeth,(you get the picture). I went outside for a minute and came back in only to find Gage sitting in the crate with the door shut watching his cartoons while Maggie has the run of the place (something is wrong here). I know he's just trying to get some 'solitude' to watch his favorite shows and get away from this 'incorrigible dog' of mine ... Needless to say, I felt bad when I walked in and saw this :-(

"Go Maggie, Go!"

Maggie is pushing about 35 lbs and she only 3 months old. I'm still sleeping on the living room floor next to her crate but she seems to be getting better as far as the "potty training". Now she goes by the door, doesn't bark or whine just goes by the door ... so, you better be paying attention when she wants to go out.

She's also got this new thing now ... when you walk her on the leash, she always carries part of the leash in her mouth (I think that is her way of walking you, instead of me walking her). She runs while we're out for our walks, with the leash in her mouth and I would just shout "Go Maggie, Go" ... I thought she was so cute! Lesson one to anyone out there reading this ... it's cute when they are a puppy running ahead with the leash in their mouth but when they get BIGGER, it's not so cute when they are pulling your arm off ... I had to learn the hard way :-(

This picture is probably one of the last taken where I could pick her up. She needs to grow into those ears, but I still "Love My Maggie Mo" ...

Monday, August 10, 2009

How Does A Puppy Get a Bladder Infection?

I kinda got a little ahead of things by posting the Santa Barbara trip. Maggie and I are still living in this small apartment ... she goes to "school", while Mom goes to work. We seem to have a schedule now but for the like of me, she is a little harder to "potty train" as my last Golden. I've been sleeping on the living room floor next to her crate for weeks now ... taking her out at night as soon as she stirs ... sometimes two to four times a night ... We go to the vet to get our second round of shots (or is it the third, I'm not sure) and I talked with the vet about a discharge I saw when she was peeing (I know, too much information) ... sure enough, Maggie has a bladder infection. The vet put her on Clavamox and I'm thinking okay, now at least we know what's been going on with her potty training ... I hope she didn't get it from the apartment complex, you know, there are other dogs there and her immune system isn't up to par yet ... poor thing ... at least now everything will be under control.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Santa Barbara and the Obama Girls

Things are going pretty well. We have a schedule ... up at 5:30 a.m. to go for our walk, Mom gets ready for work while Maggie sits on my bed and watches ... then it's off to school and work. It's a hectic schedule but I am enjoying my little Maggie Mo.

My sisters, Terry & Michelle call and ask if I want to meet them in Santa Barbara for the weekend. It's a "dog friendly" hotel and they were going to bring Mr. Bittles, the one and only. I decide Mags and I are going on our first road trip. I put Mags in her crate (which she is barely fitting in now) and we take off for the coast ... the hotel is beautiful and the weather, of course, is to die for. I catch up with the girls on the grounds and Michelle says "that's not a puppy, that looks like a horse" ... now Mags is only three months at this time but yes she is towering over Mr. Bittles. We had a large time, hiking, taking the dogs to a dog friendly beach (which I was so scared she was going to go into the ocean and never be seen), eating out and just enjoying the weather ... a lot of people would stop us and pet Maggie and comment about her beautiful blonde hair (Mr. Bittles was having to take a back seat to all of this) ... I was so proud of this dog of mine and inside I was beaming to be her owner.

Mr. Bittles didn't take a liking to Mags (I think he had short mans syndrome) ... anyway, Mr. Bittles growled and barked at Maggie in the hotel room ... not allowing Maggie to play with "his" toys or "his" food, etc... Finally, Maggie put her "paw" down and things got a little bit better.

So it's early morning and I decide to take Maggie for a walk. I met up with a young lady that I had met the day earlier who took a liking to Maggie. She was very gracious and asked if I had a moment to spare to meet some people ... "Sure", I said. So I followed her to another hotel room and she comes out followed by two little girls. These girls are hugging and petting my Maggie Mo and I know deep in my heart they want a dog ... I then find out that these are the Obama girls and that their Dad said they could have a dog after the election (he was running for President at that time) ... win or lose, they would get a dog. Maggie and the girls bonded a little and then we said our good bye's ... (I'm thinking in my head "I hope he says something in his inauguration speech about Maggie"), good grief Christy, get a life ...

Back to the hotel room, "Guess what Terry and Michelle, I met the Obama girls" ... yeah, yeah ... what's for breakfast?

Randy to the Rescue!

Daddy and Kathy left to go back home. Apparently Daddy's baby (Shuma) wasn't eating while he was gone so he had to leave early. I'm all alone now with Maggie ... oh, I forgot to tell you that "puppies" aren't allowed to live in this apartment complex ... so I have to "hide" her while I was there ... no worries, I mean, how hard could it be to hide a small fluffy fur ball?

Okay, so what am I gonna do ... tomorrow I have to go to work ... what am I gonna do with Maggie? I heard of doggie day care but I never gave it a thought that they wouldn't take her until she had all of her shots ... oh my gosh, we're talking months from now. So I go to Petco (where the pets go) and see what I can find ... maybe a baby gate to keep her in the kitchen while I'm at work (goodbye cabinets) ... I asked the workers at Petco if they know of any dog sitters, nope ... I found this playpen that you can put up in your house ... I buy it, it's too big for my kitchen, so back it goes ... it wouldn't work anyway ... she would be whining all day long while I was gone (so much for my stealth puppy). I'm in tears by now ... I can't believe I didn't think of all these things prior to saying yes to Kathy. I don't know what I'm gonna do ... and then there is Randy ... he offers, not by choice I'm sure, to watch Maggie while I'm at work. So this is the beginning of pre-school for Maggie Mo... thank you Randy, what a God send you were ...

A Full Day and Night

Maggie got so much attention her first day in California. My son and his family came by to see this new puppy (okay, so they came by to see Aunt Kathy and Daddy) and even Kim came over. The first words out of Kims mouth were "your in trouble" ... I didn't care though, she wasn't going to be a problem. We ate pizza, visited and the kids went swimming. It took a while to name Maggie. Kathy had already named her "Mo" but that just didn't seem right for a female puppy. I thought of KC and Gage, my grandson, said Angel (yeah, right) ... We finally came up with Maggie to go with the middle name Mo ... Yep, Maggie Mo, that sounded good!

It was by far a full day in a small 800 square foot apartment. Later that night I gave Daddy my bedroom so he could get some much needed rest, Kathy got the couch and I was going to sleep next to Maggie on the floor by her crate. We turned off the lights and then it happened ... Maggie whined all night long ... I tried to put my hand in the crate for comfort but that didn't work ... took her outside ... finally Kathy picked Maggie up and laid her on her chest. It worked, Maggie went to sleep ... it had to be 2 or 3 in the morning by then ... whew, we were exhausted. The next morning Daddy came out of the bedroom and said "she sure is a good puppy, I didn't hear a peep from her" ... Kathy and I just looked at each other ... "yeah daddy, you were in the bedroom with the door closed and your hearing aids off ... no wonder you didn't hear anything!" ... we all got a good laugh on that one ...

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Welcome to California!

So today is the big day. I can hardly concentrate at work. I tell everyone that happens to cross my way "I'm getting a puppy today", "My daddy and sister are bring her out from Arizona", yea, yea, they think. By 4:00 p.m. I leave work to drive 20 miles to my apartment. I start to cry (only me) before I even open the door. I can't believe my daddy and sister would bring a puppy out to me. I open the door and there she is lying on the cool tiled floor with daddy sitting next to her ... I can't believe she's my dog ... she's a beautiful fluffy golden fur ball and I fell in love with her that moment. Life is good I think, or is it? More to tell ...

Are You Sure?

Those were the first words I read that Monday morning as I opened up my e-mail at work. I had talked with my sister Kathy the night before. Feeling a little lonely, she had told me about her friend that had puppies. They were Golden Retrievers, my favorite breed, and she had one "clearance" puppy that I could buy for only $100. The others were going for $500. My "clearance" puppy had a "mohawk" and I guess that wasn't suitable for most people. I didn't care. I told Kathy I would love one and knowing Kathy that's all it took. She told me she would bring this puppy out to me (driving 500 miles or more) and she didn't seem to give it a second thought. So Kathy and Daddy decided to bring this "clearance" puppy out to California to meet her new mom, (thank you daddy and Kathy for all you did for me) ... so now the real journey begins.

Friday, August 7, 2009

So, today I decided to create this blog so my family and friends can connect with Maggie and myself. I will try to go back when I first became a parent to Mags, afterall, this could be a book that would far surpass the book and movie "Marley and Me". It all started on June 1, 2007, the day my Maggie Mo was born.