A New Year~ A New Pascal Story~ Nice Job, Pascal!

~*~ For some reason, the large photos at the beginning of my posts are getting distorted. Until I can resolve the problem, if you click on the photo, you will see it the way it is supposed to be. ~*~

To really get 2011 off to a good start, I think a new Pascal story is in order~  Though he turned eleven in July, (4th,)  Pascal hasn’t lost any of his funny quirks; if anything, he’s been busy adding new ones & refining the old ones.  Last night was a perfect example of a classic “Pascal” maneuver~

Every night, I prepare his dinner when I prepare mine, so we both eat dinner at the same time. He eats very slowly for a dog, but being a slow-eater myself, he always finishes eating before I do. Every night as soon as he’s finished his dinner, he comes over to where I’m sitting at the table to let me know he’s finished so I can wipe his face- ( I discovered early-on  that he really likes to be clean, so if I don’t wipe his face when he’s finished eating, he’ll wipe it himself- by running his chin along the cushion of the couch!)  Once I’ve cleaned his face I finish my dinner while he sits on the floor at my feet,  patiently waiting for me to finish eating.

Because he’s always been such a “picky” eater I have to have something I can use as a bribe to make sure he eats his dinner,   as  his medicine is mixed into his food. Once I’ve finished eating, I take both of our plates into the kitchen & if he’s eaten, give him a treat to eat in the other room while I wash dishes. Normally his treat is potato, but occasionally I’ll give him a small dish of sherbet,  which is what I usually eat while I do dishes, however he doesn’t usually see me, because he’s in the other room eating his potato.                                          

Last night I brought him his potato & went back to the kitchen to wash dishes. I had taken sherbet out of the freezer but hadn’t put it into a dish yet. Standing at the sink while it filled with water, I had the feeling that I wasn’t alone.  I turned around, and guess who was standing there staring at me?  “What are you doing?” I asked. I had just given him his potato, he couldn’t possibly have finished it! He continued to stare at me. I thought maybe he needed to go out,  so I asked~  No- that wasn’t it. He wouldn’t follow me to the door. He just stood where he was, not moving . I walked into the dining room where I had given him his potato.

At first I didn’t  see his dish where I had left it. I walked closer to take a better look. Nope! No dish. No potato! BUT I saw the plastic bag that I lay under his cloth placemat,  & his placemat-  both were pushed way back under the wooden stand that holds his water dish, carefully arranged in a lump-  over the dish with his potato in it! He had done a great job! He hadn’t left one bit of dish sticking out from underneath the placemat & plastic bag!  I lifted the placemat. There was the dish with his potato-  completely untouched!

While I was in the dining room looking for his dish,  Pascal sat totally still in the kitchen. He hadn’t budged-  I knew what this trick was about, he’d done it before,  but I pretended that I didn’t. With his dish in my hands,  I walked up to him & said,  ” No potato tonight, huh? What do you want?”  He stared at me~ “What, Pascal?  Show me what you want! Do you want ice cream?”  Suddenly the statue broke it’s silent stance! He  stood up,  tail wagging in circles excitedly-  I showed the carton of ice cream  to him and asked,  “This? Is this what you want?” I got a chorus of barks & a fanfare of tail wags. Clearly, I was on to something-  something good!

Pascal got a small dish of ice cream~  and oh! Life was good!

Nice job, Pascal!

Leading the Life of Pascal

9/19/09 Recouperating

It’s been awhile since I’ve written.  Pascal and I had a little ordeal to get through,  but we made it and I’m happy to say, everything turned out well!  Pascal managed to avoid two weeks worth of walks, as well as a trip to the groomers,  so, with the extra attention and as much sympathy from me as he could get, I think he didn’t consider it a totally bad trade-

One evening I noticed that the upper corner of hisl eft eyelid looked red. My first thought was that it must be an eye infection.  I hoped that I could put hot compresses on it and it would go away. After applying hot compresses several times a day for five days I saw no improvement at all. I started to think that maybe it was something else;  a spider bite, perhaps, or-?  I was stumped~!  When my daughter saw it she said that one of her dogs had something that looked like that & it turned out to be a tick- Tick? I hadn’t thought of that-  Uh-oh—— I don’t deal with ticks! I decided that I’d better make an appointment with the vet.

I brought him in the following day and was shocked to hear that this little red bump was a tumor. I was told they are usually benign and it could possibly remain there as long as it wasn’t touching the cornea~ and his wasn’t. We decided to try antibiotic drops in his eye for a week and see if maybe they would shrink it a bit. I was supposed to call back the following week & report on how the eye was doing. The day that I brought him in, (the picture on the right,) it really didn’t look very big to me-For blog But six days later, after using the drops to shrink it all week, this is what it looked like~(the photo on the left.) Not a pretty sight!

Eye after 6 days When I reported this to the vet he said to bring him in & he’d remove it. So~ I spent 2/3 of the next day in the waiting room at the vets while Pascal was in surgery. Finally, after what seemed like forever, they brought Pascal out to me, groggy & miserable,  with stitches in his eyelid and a “cone” around his head. I carried him carefully to the car and strapped him into his seatbelt, where he lay down, moaning & breathing funny; making the entire 10-minute ride home feel more like 30 minutes.  It was awful to see him like that. The first two days were rough, but I could see improvement each day and by the third day he was  himself again, running to the window to bark at squirrels, and picking through his dinner, Pascal-style, scattering it around the dish so that it would look like he’d eaten more than he actually had- and thus garner his favorite treat, some baked potato.

**Pascal 9/26/09

I took this picture two days ago and you can see, other than the skin being a bit pink,-  and that’s probably because all of his fur hasn’t grown back yet from where it was shaved, his eye looks “like new!”

The weather has finally cooled off, so I’m hoping  he’ll be ready to  go for walks again~  as long as it’s not too hot or too cold, or raining, or windy, or muddy- or too many prickly stickers, or~~~~~never mind! Feeling good!! C’mon Pascal,  let’s go!