Respite Open Thread: Bixby Update

Look at that face

It’s Monday, so I’m swamped with work stuff (okay and gardening stuff – one of my clients gave me a gift certificate to the local garden shop and I HAD to use it today, and then of course plant stuff, too). But I wanted to give you an update on the Big Guy, since I hadn’t in a while.

It’s mostly because things are pretty much back to normal. He gets stronger every day. His gait is almost normal, most of the sway is gone and he’s stable on all four legs. I pinch myself at how lucky we are and the nightmare of a month ago is fading. We are down to treatment every two weeks. I caught Scout literally standing with her front legs on his back yesterday and he was completely steady. Unheard of just a week ago.

And I cannot thank you enough for giving me a space to share it all – I was so overwhelmed with sadness and fear and leaning on you guys helped get me through the weeks.

So you good people get bonus Scout:

I will try and get you some Pearl photos tomorrow. She’s doing well and has pretty much fully integrated with Mabel and Maddie – though I have some funny stories about that. Also, I could use more pet photos if you want to send them to me. I’m determined to keep up these respite threads – if only for my own sanity.

No-politics open thread

66 replies
  1. 1
    Sab says:

    I am impressed and amazed that while you were dealing with a large very sick recuperating dog you felt able to take in an orphan duck.

    Some people rise to occasions higher than I usually do. Good pups and good ducks got the owner they deserve.

  2. 2
    HeleninEire says:

    Oh such good news. Good on you dog mom.

    Dat’s my boi.

  3. 3
    Ohio Mom says:

    Happy to hear all of this!

  4. 4
  5. 5
    sukabi says:

    Yay Bixby. Who’s a good boy?

  6. 6
    Shana says:

    Hey, if you can’t vent or worry out loud to us, who can you vent etc. to? Seriously, we’re here for you and everyone else who needs it.

    Glad to hear Bixby is doing better, and that Pearl seems to be adjusting, or being adjusted to.

  7. 7
    MazeDancer says:

    Such outstandingly great news! Well done!

  8. 8
    zhena gogolia says:

    Very happy to hear this.

  9. 9
    orchid moon says:

    Great news on Bixby! So glad the outcome is a good one. Bixby has such a great mom.

  10. 10
    spudgun says:

    Thank you for the pix and the update! So happy and relieved that he’s getting back to normal.

    Can’t wait for more duck pix! And, special request, maybe one of my fave Gabe…? 🙂

  11. 11
    Joy in FL says:

    I’m so glad Bixby is doing so well. I love Great Danes so much. The three I’ve had in my life were each a best friend.

  12. 12
    laura says:

    Spouse and I went away for the weekend. When we returned we found our indoor formally feral kittens had turned into lionesses.
    If they were bigger we’d be dinner.
    We’re hoping they go full Kliban Tabby in the coming months/years.

  13. 13
    laura says:

    That Bixby is one lovely Dane. I’m so happy for you, for Bixby and his Scout. Keep 9n keeping on Bixby!

  14. 14
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    Go Bixby! And Scout is wonderful as well as Mabel and Maddie and (Minnie!) Pearl. Thanks much for the respites.

  15. 15
  16. 16
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Bixby is looking great, and pictures of Scout always make me smile. And yes, please provide Pearl pix.

  17. 17

    @laura: We may need photos.

  18. 18
    Aleta says:

    Wonderful !!!

    Over here, our noble beast is visibly improving every 3-4 hours it seems. Already he has to be restrained from his old routines. In the dark last night I listened to his breathing sound normal for the first time in four months. Thank you Tamara and everyone for the solid words; they helped so much.

  19. 19
    Ron says:

    Both dogs are fantastic but Scout just looks incredibly cool to me.

  20. 20
  21. 21
    Ruckus says:

    @TaMara (HFG):
    Gabe has the best expression. Almost a “Why are you waking me up?” look to it.
    Glad to hear the pups are doing good.

  22. 22
    Kraux Pas says:

    Question for the balloon juice brain trust:

    I’ve been working on a mission statement for a new website I’ve been creating. However I also want a longer document fleshing out my goals and vision for the site. I was hoping someone could tell me what such a document might be called so that I may better research how to write one.

    (Reposted from a dead/dying thread

  23. 23
    laura says:


    @Aleta: oh, the breath of a dog in the night!
    Content in safety, concern in danger in all it’s forms.
    Your photo montage of a dog in the fullness of his new found life of a loved companion gutted me. I wish you both the longest best time together.

  24. 24
    Sab says:

    @Aleta: Is this the lovely rescue poodleish guy, or Finn? Poodleish guy has one of the loveliest dog faces I have ever seen. So tentative yet trusting.

  25. 25
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    Yay, Bixby and the entire menagerie! So happy to see happy dog pix.

    On a related note, how to send you pet photos? I have one to share, with a story.

  26. 26
    Ohio Mom says:

    @Kraux Pas: A few guesses:
    Vision statement
    Organization statement of purpose
    Purpose statement

    Good luck!

  27. 27
    Jay says:

    @TaMara (HFG):



    Double Huzzah!

  28. 28
    JAFD says:

    @Ohio Mom: You can always check The Society of Historians of Early California.
    Not the most prestigious of academic societies, but they have a great Mission statement. :-)

  29. 29
    lamh36 says:

    UGH!!! The fuq’ers at United Airlines did it again!!!!

    They removed our damn seat assignments again! We paid for assigned seats…I checked online, our assigned seats we chose were “not selected”…ok…I called , they sat us random around the plane. No…sorry, I called back a 2nd time…the agent then assigned seating for our group together. That was a little more than 2 weeks ago…so here we are…48 hours before take off, no less than 24hrs before check in, and I go to check out seat assignments and there are “NONE SELECTED”!!!! Sons of bitches!

    I’m on the phone with customer service a damn 3rd time to fix this bullshit!

    THREE DAMN TIMES WE CALLED…now they are telling us that me and nephew can seat together in the back of the damn plane…and the other 2 will NOT even be seating together…but they’d be seating at the damn front…MUTHAPHUCKERS!

    now they are telling us that me and nephew can seat together in the back of the damn plane…and the other 2 will NOT even be seating together…but they’d be seating at damn near 15-20 rows up …MUTHAPHUCKERS!

  30. 30
    satby says:

    @Aleta: @TaMara (HFG): Great news on all fronts! So happy for both dogs and their beloved families.

  31. 31
    Another Scott says:

    Excellent Bixby news. Thanks.

    Hoping for continued good news going forward.


  32. 32

    @O. Felix Culpa: whats4dinnersolutions (at) live (dot) com

  33. 33
    Davebo says:

    So glad the beautiful goggie is back on track!

  34. 34
    Sab says:

    @lamh36: My sister offered us her United bonus miles a couple of years back. We declined because it wasn’t doable with my husband’s bad back. So we splurged on Delta, which was pricey but wonderful. But we fly about once a decade when we feel lively.

    I am so sorry. It will get better when you land in the UK.

  35. 35
    Patricia Kayden says:

    So glad to hear the great news about Bixby. Here’s hoping that he continues to get better.

  36. 36
    Quiltingfool says:

    I love reading these happy dog and cat stories! More dog and cat pictures, please and thank you. I really like the pictures of Steve (oh, please, John, gotta have a fix). I read Balloon Juice in the morning; it’s like having coffee with friends, so grateful for you folks. The political news is really getting to me; I’m angry, sad and I worry for our nation. When I can’t read about politics any more, I go to my sewing room and churn out quilts, the more difficult the pattern, the better. This does help my attitude, but my sweet Jesus, I’m running out of storage room! I have got to start an Etsy account and see if I can sell them before I’m featured on a Hoarders episode!

  37. 37
    Kristine says:

    Wonderful news!

  38. 38
    Another Scott says:

    @Aleta: Excellent news! I really enjoyed your photos and comments on him on 5/11. I’m very happy he’s doing better.


  39. 39
    Ruckus says:

    Every time I see that picture of Bixby up top I keep thinking, what a fine soul he looks like. Wisdom and grace just ooze out of that shot.

  40. 40
    lamh36 says:

    @lamh36: 3rd time calling and now United tells me that they can’t assign the nephew and I seats seating together cause of some “problem” with their seating software or some excuse…and so the nephew and I will have to get our seat assignments at the airport on the day of flight, but they’d “put something in the system saying assign us seats together” .

    Which means we WON’T likely be seating together since the flight seems to be out of Economy seats.

    If they don’t seat us together, well then we can get a refund for the amount we paid for assigned seats.

    I’m so upset right now.

    I am not a small person, my nephew is NOT a small person…and that’s why I paid for assigned seating from the damn beginning. As a “person of size” I can’t just count on random seating and luck out and get comfortable seat assignments….

    but it’s not even about that…the fact of the matter is that @united allows you to pay advance for a seat assigment even if you are in Basic Economy…it’s supposed to be an incentive to fly United. And this is what happenes the first darn time we even utilize that feature..

    the fact that 2x now we’ve gotten seat assignments…I have all the document receipts saved that show the seat assignements we were assigned and yet for ONE LEG of the entire 4 leg trip…United keeps messing over us. We should be getting a refund for the pre-payments we made

  41. 41
    satby says:

    I just found out President Carter broke a hip and had surgery?!?

  42. 42
    lamh36 says:


    3m3 minutes ago
    Replying to @psddluva4evah
    We apologize for any inconvenience. We’re unable to guarantee seat assignments and they are subject to change without notice in the event of unforeseen circumstances. You can request a refund here: . ^AD

    This is the LAST flight I will likely fly with United Airlines.

    Thank God my Paris flight is with Delta Airlines!

  43. 43
    moonbat says:

    I am so happy that your big puppy is fully recovering. He is such a handsome one. You are an excellent dog mom — and duck mom! I hope things have calmed down to a degree that you can enjoy all your animal buddies without worry.

  44. 44
    Kraux Pas says:

    @Ohio Mom: Thank you so much. I’m pulling up research now and we also completed the first draft of our mission statement.

  45. 45
    Mike in NC says:

    Tonight’s episode of “Blacklist” basically was about how POTUS was a traitor who used the Secret Service as his personal hit squad. Talk about art imitating life!

  46. 46
    trollhattan says:

    Doggies, doggies, doggies, doggies, doGGies, doggies, doggies, doggies, doggies!

    So happy for you all. One cannot get enough doggie time.

    Ours had his 3rd birthday Saturday. He’s basically a teen with all teen behaviors. No matter, we love you, opinions and all.

  47. 47
    JAFD says:

    @lamh36: My sympathies, as another ‘big person’

    Was recent bit on ‘Ask the Pilot’ website that the 737 groundings had airline schedules upscrambled…

  48. 48
    Barbara says:

    @lamh36: I have never had this kind of issue with seating on any airline, choosing seats and then being kicked out, repeatedly. I am sorry and I hope it works out. Whatever happens, try to cultivate airport zen – it is the only way to get through a flight without an enduring spike in BP.

  49. 49
    Barbara says:

    @JAFD: That actually sounds like a realistic possibility.

  50. 50
    JAFD says:

    @Quiltingfool: Am an old man, was around for Nixon and Agnew, who were not just evil but _competent_ as well. Worse that current ‘leaders’.

    Some pictures of my hobby at

    Less useful than quilts, but take up less space.;-)

  51. 51
    CaseyL says:

    I’m so happy to hear Bixby continues to mend (and Scout continues to be his Faithful Companion). That photo makes me sniffle a bit, though; he’s lost that Big Happy Goofy Guy look. Hopefully he’ll get it back!

    Kitten season is starting again at PAWs. The last couple of weeks, we’ve had multiple litters in the Foster Room. Some with Mom, some without. There’s nothing like trying to change bedding, replace litter boxes, and refill food dishes when furry imps are insistent on leaving their “room” to go exploring – or to climb you. They all seem to love my hair (I have long, thick red hair) for chewing on or nesting in.

  52. 52
    Aleta says:

    @laura: @Jay: @satby: @Another Scott: Thank you so much. He’s much funnier than I described. And thank you for the words and care you sent.

    @Sab: It’s the dog, who had a tough surgery 5 days ago. They said he would recover quite quickly and so far so good. Young Finn is still living lively, leaping and spinning. He doesn’t get to leap at the dog’s nose any more though.

  53. 53
    Aleta says:

    @lamh36: Very sorry to hear they are still messing with you. It’s not right, including the way they wash their hands of the whole instead of trying improve the situation. It’s happened to me twice, once after I was on the plane.

  54. 54
    mrmoshpotato says:



    Glad to hear the big fella is getting better steadily.

  55. 55
    Lyrebird says:

    @Aleta: Been sending good thoughts to your fuzzy doggie and will continue… thank you so much for the update.

    And HOORAY for Bixby and thank you Tamara for some respite!

  56. 56
    Aleta says:

    @Lyrebird: I deeply appreciate that! He has a sensitive heart and I think your positive thoughts will connect and help. Thanks.

  57. 57
    Yutsano says:


  58. 58
    Msb says:

    Great news! Glad to hear it.

  59. 59
    something fabulous says:

    @lamh36: you totally should. that’s absurd! Did you make printouts of all the previous confirmations? If you’ve kept them, you should print them out and bring them to the ticketing desk/gate. Raise a Ruckus (hi, Ruckus!) and show your proofs. And yes, they’ll probably try to give you miles or something if they cannot give you the seats– obviously you’re not going to be looking forward to flying with them again: stand firm for refund!! How annoying for you– hope you all have a great trip anyway.

  60. 60
    kindness says:

    Thanks TaMara. A good critter/kid story is better than any politics story. I’m glad he’s getting better. He’s your child but one of our regularly featured kids.

  61. 61
    TomatoQueen says:

    So wonderful to see & read progress happening for all the furry friends. I also vote for Moar Pix of all, especially newly mentioned Liongrrrls and those smartypantses in long thick red hair (my late mother was a red-head and had similar experiences).

  62. 62
    luzeelu says:


    Makes me happy that he’s doing so well. Have been wondering.

  63. 63
    bluefish says:

    Delurking to tell you how your good news and sweet fotos cheered me up just now. Thx.

  64. 64
    J R in WV says:


    This is the LAST flight I will likely fly with United Airlines.

    Thank God my Paris flight is with Delta Airlines!

    Our experience with United has always been like that. No customer service whatsoever, it’s always screw you for flying with us.

    There are things to dislike about Delta — their HQ airport is stressed to the breaking point in ATL. They try to screw over their unions, instead of working together with them to improve service. They’re based in Georgia, which I intend to boycott in every way possible as long as they continue to oppress women.


    Their flight services are so much better than other airlines. AA is better than United, some. We’ve started springing for business class, being old and grouchy. But we don’t travel as much as you do!

    Enjoy England and Paris, we loved Paris the very short stay we had there.

  65. 65
    Barbara says:

    @J R in WV: If you fly enough you will have bad and good experiences with every airline, with the possible exception of some of the international ones that are known for being luxury carriers. We like Icelandair and Air France and honestly have not noticed anything that made United an outlier. If the 737 grounding is the issue, it would make sense that it seems inscrutable — they don’t want to give you a reason to cancel because you are too afraid to fly, so they say nothing.

  66. 66
    Leslie says:

    So glad to hear the good news about Bixby!

Comments are closed.