My friend’s Facebook posts about comforting her dog who was recovering from surgery took me back to Honey’s operation as a puppy.
But I was no comfort to my dog. Darn extrovert puppy.
The Evil Puppy
The phrase “it’s a good thing she’s so cute” was made for Honey. Because as a puppy, she was pure evil.
There were the pointy shark teeth that snagged my fingers, my sweaters, and most painful of all, my nipples. She did physically impossible things, like swallowing a whole pigeon she found on a walk when she was only three months old.
And then there was the defiance of the squeaky toy.
Honey fell in love with a toy someone had donated to the SPCA where she attended puppy kindergarten. It was a tiny piece of fluff that sorta resembled an animal with a plastic squeaker inside.
Honey adored it so much the leader of the kindergarten class let her take it home with her.
I knew the danger if Honey loosened the squeaky from its fuzzy casing and I watched her carefully. When I heard the unmistakable sound of teeth on plastic I told Honey to spit it out as I moved toward her.
Honey is no dummy.
She saw me going for her squeaky. She looked me right in the eye. And swallowed.
See? Pure evil.
The Sick Puppy
We watched Honey’s leavings carefully for a week hoping to find the squeaky had passed safely through her system. But when two weeks came and went with no squeaky and no sign of distress, we assumed she must have passed it sometime when we weren’t looking.
Months later, Honey started vomiting and suffering from diarrhea. But it would clear up after a few hours and she’d return to normal.
She never stayed sick for long. But she started losing weight.
The vet began to wonder if she had a flaw in her intestine that kinked and unkinked which would explain the sporadic illness.
But a follow up x-ray revealed the problem.
Yep, there was a small piece of plastic slowly working its way through her digestive system. It was clear one day and stuck the next. And it made it necessary to schedule emergency surgery.
The Extrovert Puppy
Luckily the surgery went well and Honey would make a good recovery.
After she was awake and alert, I went to visit and comfort my poor, sick, scared puppy. Yeah, right.
The vet allowed us to visit each other in an empty exam room. Except Honey wasn’t at all interested in me.
Every time we heard voices outside the door, she went running to see who it could be. She sniffed the hall outside through the crack under the door. And she wouldn’t stop whining.
It was almost as if she was saying to me, “Let me out of here. All the action is in the other room. I’ve got to be near my public.”
Okay, I’ll admit it. My feelings were a teeny bit hurt.
But it was great to know she wasn’t feeling scared and alone in the hospital.
I’m sure the hospital staff visited her often. And she must have loved being surrounded by other dogs and new people to love.
So I didn’t stay long.
I let Honey get back to her new friends.
The Grown Up Puppy
Honey is over five years old now. We’ve had lots of time to build our relationship.
But she still loves meeting new people.
Every time a meter reader, Latter Day Saints missionary, or political canvasser comes to the door, I swear Honey will jump in their pocket and go home with her new person.
But I suspect that if Honey needed medical care today that she’d be much happier to see me when I visited.
I just hope I never have to find out.
Your Turn: Do you have an extrovert dog who thinks everyone else is his or her best friend? Or does your little introvert prefer to spend time around family?