Archive for January, 2012

Dog Days

Posted in Stuff, Uncategorized on January 13, 2012 by bigdaddygouda

After two and a half years of living with Andy he puggle it’s safe to say I know him as well as I know anyone. A few days ago I sensed a slight change in him. His eating and bathroom habits were the same as always. He didn’t seem sick in anyway yet there was something about him that just seemed off.

I wrote it off to stress. We are two weeks into a new apartment and I just wrote it off as part of the adjustment period. That theory, however, went out the window when I woke up Wednesday morning. I made my way into the living room and found it odd that Andy, who sleeps at the end of my bed, had not followed me. As he had always done for two years.

I went back into the bedroom and Andy was standing near the edge of the bed whimpering. He reminded me of a castaway on a sinking ship – wanting to get off but afraid to jump. I called to him a few times yet he would not come down. When he didn’t respond to, “Wanna go for a walk?” I knew something was wrong.

I grabbed him by the collar and attempted to pull him down but he resisted. So I wrapped my arms around him, lifted and set him on the ground. As soon as his legs hit the floor he crumbled to the ground in a heap. He grunted a few times and lifted himself up and began to limp toward me.

The life was immediately sucked out of me. My heart began to pound and I felt sick to my stomach. Something was seriously wrong with my dog.

It appeared that his legs hurt and he couldn’t walk because of it. So, like anyone who needs immediate answers I went to Google. All signs pointed to Lyme disease. Apparently a dog’s joints become inflamed as a result of the disease and it impacts their ability to walk. I then called Keely, his former owner. She explained how Andy has suffered from the disease when he was two and he was showing the same symptoms.

We contacted the vet who said it sounded like Lyme Disease but wanted to see him to be sure. Unfortunately we couldn’t get an appointment until the next day.

I carried Andy outside so he could go to the bathroom. He couldn’t even lift his leg to pee. I brought him back inside and set him on the couch. I brought his food to him and thankfully he ate.

I explained the situation to my mother who agreed to check on him periodically through out the day while I was at work. She would later tell me that each time she arrived at my apartment to check on him he seemed happy but would not leave the couch. She covered him with his favorite blanket and let him be.

I arrived home 8 hours later and for the first time in the two years of owning Andy, the trusted Puggle was not there to greet me when I opened the door.

I instantly walked over to the couch where he was still laying where I left him earlier in the day. He was alert and seemed happy to see me. He was barely moving but his tail was thumping madly against the couch cushions. The sight was just too much for me to take. I sat down beside him as a wave of emotion splashed over me. I buried my face in my hands and began to sob as Andy struggled to put his head in my lap.

I eventually composed myself and made some calls to fellow dog owners who I know have dealt with Lyme disease before. They all spoke of similar symptoms and the agony of seeing their pet in pain. In made me feel a bit better knowing that although Lyme Disease is a serious thing, it is in fact common and more importantly, treatable.

At 9 a.m. this morning Andy and I were off to the vet. After a short examination we were on our way home with a prescription for doxycycline, aka, the Lyme Disease antibiotic. As I type this Andy is already showing improvement. He can walk again and his old wild self is starting to shine through.

Thanks to Sherry, Ashlie and Jamie for their doggie advice. Thanks to Mom and Keely for help with the vet stuff.

Andy is a pain in my ass but I don’t know what I’d do without him.


TOP 10 FILMS OF 2011

Posted in Movies on January 6, 2012 by bigdaddygouda

If nothing else, I’ve been consistent with My Top 10 movie list since 2005.

10. MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL – Hands down the best action film of the year.

9. THE MUPPETS – This one made me feel young again and I even got a little misty eyed when the original theme played prior to the big finale at the end of the film. With The Muppets the message always comes across the screen loud and clear: “Life’s a happy song, when you’ve got someone to sing along.”

8. CONTAGION – What would happen if a virus struck and wiped out half of the world’s population? This was the scariest movie of the year if you ask me.

7. MONEYBALL – This film was so good it was easy to overlook the fact that the villians in the film were The New York Yankees.

6. THE DESCENDANTS – George Clooney is perfect as a grieving father whose wife lay dying after a boating accident. He, along with his two daughters, takes a road trip to find the man who was sleeping with his wife behind his back. Sounds fucked up huh?

5. SUPER 8 – A film anchored by great acting performances by a bunch of middle school-aged kids coming of age in the 197os. The character development was so good I actually forgot I was, in fact, watching a “monster movie.”

4. THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO – This film is better than the Sweedish version and that is saying a lot. Rooney Mara is perfect as Lisbeth Slander, the titular character and Daniel Craig holds his own as Mikail Bloomqvist. Dark and suspencefull with a kick-ass original score from Trent Renznor makes this a near-perfect film.

3. HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS PART 2 – While there were some obvious changes from the beloved book, I have to say the final Potter film stuck the landing and provided a satisfying conclusion to the decade old franchise.

2. 50/50 – The always reliable Joseph Gordon Leavitt plays a cancer victim who is given a 50 percent chance of beating the disease. Seth Rogen, in one of his best roles, plays the wing-man. The film is sad, funny, touching and timely. And how could any film that ends with the Pearl Jam gem Yellow Ledbetter, blasting through the movie theater speakers not earn a spot on this list?

1. DRIVE – There were a lot of good movies in 2011. Some were even great. But Drive, with Ryan Gosling, was special, unlike anything I’ve seen on film in years. Here is my original review of the film: WORTH THE DRIVE