Aww, You Guys

Thanks to Tamara and the rest of you for chipping in– I didn’t see that coming, but it sure is welcome- the estimate for Lily’s care ranged from a small used car to $6,000. And again, that’s just an estimate. I’d like to think I deserved an Oscar for not flinching and just handing them a credit card- that’s why I spent 30 years building my credit rating, so I could afford an emergency like this, right?

At any rate, I spoke with the Dr. (a nice young woman named Dr. Weimer- although I am now at the age where my first thought upon meeting most doctors is “I’m supposed to trust this kid? Do her parents drop her off at work?”) at some length, and where we stand is the following. This issue is common among mixed breed dogs, and is three times as likely to present in females than in males. It can manifest in three ways- it can simply be an issue that comes about on its own, it can be the result of an infection, or it can be caused by cancer.

We don’t know which of it it is, yet, but the fact that she has good organ function (liver and kidney did not show anything abnormal in the initial blood tests yesterday) is “encouraging.” She also has an appetite and thirst, which is also good. The priority is to stabilize her- the get some blood into her, get the blood cell count and platelet count up, all while doing some thorough tests to try to determine the cause or if there even is one. If the issue is just presenting on its own, that would be the best, so that is what we are crossing our fingers and hoping for. That would just be a matter of stabilizing her, getting everything back to normal, and going home.

Before I left they took me in the back to see her, and my goodness is that place impressive. There were AT LEAST 20 doctors and nurses and vet techs back there, and it was super clean and nice. Lily looked very relaxed and comfortable, and is just so lethargic from the low blood count that she didn’t even seem anxious. I took a t-shirt I had worn yesterday out of the hamper and brought it with me so I could put it in the cage so she would have a comforting scent with her, and again, everyone was super gentle and nice and just gushing over her. She really is an angel, and she doesn’t bark or yip, she’s just a docile lady.

Leaving her was one of the hardest things I have ever done. I was actually thinking about it on the ride home- when I left for basic training my mom dropped me off at the recruiter and I bounded off without looking back. That’s sort of how I am about things- “Ok, I’m doing this now. Ok, I am a non-smoker now. Ok, I am going to rehab and will be a non-drinker now.” I don’t know if that is common or one of my idiosyncracies, but it’s just how I do things. You’ve made yopur decision, no looking back now. Just make it work. This was a lot harder.

I have already called to check on her (because of course I have, and spoke to the nurse who was administering her first transfusion while we were on the phone. She gushed and said what a sweet dog she is and that she was doing well, and I made sure to tell her that she is very quiet and won’t display pain or anxiety by barking or fighting, that you have to pay attention to her eyes and eyebrows and her shedding (she drops hair when she is anxious). They are supposed to call me back after some of the initial testing is done.

I’m mentally exhausted but I have only cried twice, and I am going to take a nap. I do want to thank you all again for the financial help. It really means a lot. Here are some of my favorite pictures of Lily from right after I adopted her from the shelter last week nine years ago:

I love that picture with her BFF Samantha (the second best dog ever). I’ll update you when I know something.

Positive Thoughts for Lily

I had to hospitalize Lily just a bit ago. She had been losing weight, acting listless, and I scheduled her for a checkup, and they ran her bloodwork and while all her organs are fine, her teeth were white and she had a very low platelet count so they believe she has Immune-Mediated Thrombocytopenia.

They are keeping her overnight to keep an eye on her, pump her full of steroids, and monitor her vitals, and if things change for the better we are going to keep her there until her platelets are back to normal, and if she takes a turn for the worse I am going to take her to a critical care center for a transfusion.

That’s all I know, and I refuse to google it (beyond finding the name) and I don’t know how much it will cost to fix her but whatever it takes. Keep her in your thoughts.

Obligatory- I am a basket case right now.

Monday Morning Open Thread: The Profitable Stigmata of Palmer Comey

After all, he has a book to sell…

Ed Kilgore, at NYMag:

The belief that Clinton couldn’t lose is the only way to make sense of what a lot of people said and did in October 2016. But most of them did not have as much power to derail her campaign as Comey.

Polls are usually blamed for the illusion of Clinton’s invulnerability. But for the most part, they weren’t that far off track, particularly if you recall that she won the popular vote by more than 2 percent, and prescient observers noted before the election that Trump was in striking distance based on the polls.

Perhaps all the pollsters and prognosticators who guessed wrong about 2016 are complicit in fostering the overconfidence of the Clinton campaign, Democratic voters — and yes — even James Comey. Certainly the big national news organizations whose coverage decisions reflected an apparent belief that the victorious Clinton could safely be taken down a few pegs over the email “story” have a lot to answer for. But in the end it was probably the difficulty of envisioning a President Trump that fed the overconfidence about Clinton most of all. It couldn’t happen here, until it did. And Comey is just one of the players in the political game who must now regret their lack of imagination. His mistake, however, had far bigger consequences than most.

Read more

Saturday Morning Open Thread: Stay Positive

Consumer alert: If you’re a fan of Penzey’s Spices (useful even to those of us who aren’t exactly cooks), this is definitely the weekend to check your email — or their online site, to find the store nearest you.
Another positivity suggestion:

Monday Morning Open Thread: KITTENS!

Now we can take comfort that at least one good thing has already happened this week! From wise commentor / gardener / rescue angel Satby:

You may have seen my comments last week about me spending Easter trying to trap a pregnant feral female cat that was part of a group I was feeding over winter. People have requested kitten pictures, so I thought I would share our little lady’s saga.

My cunningly hidden humane trap (under the rug) outside the garage I hoped I wouldn’t have to go into to trap her. I’m sure you can see why.

Five hours later, having completely ignored my trap, the cat practically walked into a carrier for me in the shed where I had set up a feral feeding station /shelter.

She wasn’t very happy when the door was shut. She cried the 40 minute drive to our board president, Becky’s house. Becky is the kitten whisperer, Animal Control in 2 counties calls her when they need tiny kittens removed before they catch something and die. Every spring for kitten season Becky converts a bedroom into a “maternity ward”. Here is our girl adjusting to her new surroundings.

And a couple of days later, it’s obvious that she isn’t a feral at all, just a very pregnant (probably abandoned) cat relieved to be safe inside again. She’s very sweet. And humongous.

Finally, a week to the day, the blessed event happened this afternoon. She went into labor about 1:30 and finished delivering her kittens about 2 hours later. Five kittens total.

Momma and kittens doing well, though momma is showing some very protective instincts right now. All will be available for adoption in about 8 weeks, including mom cat.

I know other jackals do TNR and rescue, maybe some of them can share some stories and we can have some distractions from the shit-show in DC.

Open Thread: It’s the Ducks That Make It Art…


Pigs being intelligent and cleanly animals, would not be fair to snark about comment trolls showing up after the parade is over…

Explanation, per the Irish Examiner:

The show is called Pet Shenanigans based in Busch Gardens amusement park in Williamsburg, Virginia in the US.

The trained animals were once shelter animals who were rescued by their now-trainers and have become the new-born stars of the popular show…

If You’ve Got a Blacklist I Want To Be on It.

I’ve only been thinkfluencing here at the ranch for a few months, so I might not make the grade.


Meanwhile, the United States government, traditionally one of the bastions of press freedom, is about to compile a list of professional journalists and “top media influencers,” which would seem to include bloggers and podcasters, and monitor what they’re putting out to the public.

Great! Nothing nefarious to see here. Move along, folks.

If you would like to see more robust congressional oversight of these agencies, I think you know how to get it. It’s with the fund that’s split between all eventual Democratic nominees in House districts currently held by Republicans.

Goal Thermometer

Update: Echo is feeling better.

“I don’t know what came over me, man.”

“Let’s try to put the whole sordid affair behind us.”