Mattie’s Day Three – June 29th, 2015
When we arrive home from the groomer on Sunday, Jasmine is still down and not feeling a hundred percent. Her lungs sound raspy and she is scratching at her left ear.
Soooo Monday morning, bright and early we are headed to the vet’s office to see what is going on.
The vet confirms one of my suspicions, Jasmine is stone deaf, so changing her name is of no consequence; a new name didn’t take much of a stretch for my imagination, the name Mattie was easy to come up with.
I’m told she has a cold and an ear infection, she is placed on pills for two weeks and given medicine for her ear which also has a growth in it blocking the channel about ninety percent. The ear is easy, the pills are a different story, for those who own or have owned a Shih Tzu you know how impossible it is to get them to open their mouths and get a pill down.
I slather it with butter (didn’t help that it is huge) I mixed it with dog food, didn’t work, there is just no way she’s going to take this pill. Last resort, I purchase a pre-cooked chicken from Fry’s; it not only works I almost lost two fingers. I smile to myself knowing I have won this small battle; only to find out I have lost the war, now she won’t eat her regular dog food, she wants CHICKEN!
Mattie‘s coat had to be clipped super short and she is now finding the house too cold for her to be comfortable. I watch as she lays curled up trembling from lack of fur. I head for the back closet and rummage through the linens. I find one of T.J.’s nice lap blanket. I notice he has two or three so using one shouldn’t be a problem.
I offered her the cover and tuck the ends around her back; she snuggled down into the blanket, the shivering ends, and her breathing evens out. That evening T.J. asked me why it was his GOOD blanket instead of mine. I ignored the question and just gave him the Mom look.
A trip to Pet’s Mart is needed, my twenty dollar dog is quickly turning into a major expense; one fluffy bed, a few toys, shampoo and a treat or two.
Conversing becomes the next challenge. These beautiful liquid dark eyes look up at me like I’m a nut case.
I start by trying sign language, she looks at me with this expression of total bewilderment as I stand waving my arms in front of her, slapping my thigh, pounding my chest, with my mouth moving the whole time which she can only see not hear. I’m sure she feels she has entered the Twilight Zone and prays I’m not dangerous. We work on this for a few days, and one of us is getting through to the other (not sure which one of us is succeeding) but we are starting to understand each other.
Mattie has been with us for over three weeks now. She came scared, confused, not feeling well plus terribly matted. She has to be carried up and down the steps, and placed on her little piece on lawn T.J. made for her. She has to be lifted to her favorite chair and my white sofas (I can’t believe I let her sleep on them, obviously I am getting old) fortunately she can jump down. At night she heads for my bed about nine and waits to be lifted up. She has found her favorite spot on the king size bed, she falls asleep very content to be with me and I find her little snoring sounds a comfort as I drift off to sleep.
Mattie’s world is silent but she knows how to manage, she runs around the kitchen and into the living room in the morning, bounces her ball a few times and then heads to her favorite chair. I talk to her even though she can’t hear me, I wave my arms and let her know she is in my world for that moment when she is watching me.
We have found a connection in this strange situation and I feel blessed to have the opportunely to care for her in her senior years.