This is Murray (Slaughter) named after the Mary Tyler Moore Show character. Our other two dogs are named Baxter and Teddy, so it was inevitable. As it happened, it's a perfect name for him, because it rhymes with so many words: scurry, flurry, slurry, furry -- it's pretty awesome.

It's been 7 months since I took him home from the shelter, where he was traumatized, I think. He's come SO FAR from the terrified little dog he was. The people there, in the guise of "helping" him would put a thick rope around around his neck to get him out from the corner where he'd hide his head. They'd lift him up and he'd pee and shit from pure panic.

After I brought him home it took him about a two weeks or so to finally come out from hiding behind the couch or in the kennel travel box we have (with door open) or under whatever he could find. Fortunately, Teddy and Baxter were wonderful and never pushed him or tried to scare him or come on strong. They were truly truly the awesomest dogs ever.

Murray adopted Teddy, the more even-tempered guy, as his big brother. He follows Teddy around, shadows him, curls up with him, all that. And Teddy is a trooper. The Guy (husband) has called Murray "Teddy's dog" and I almost died from laughing so hard, because it's true!

He seems to have gotten over, or coming over, another behavioral hump. Like I said, it's been seven months, so I think it's finally sinking in that he can trust us - all of us - and he's letting the kids and the Guy pet him more often and more thoroughly, but I'm the one he seems to trust the most. He follows me around the house a lot. He gives me puppy dog eyes.

His back story is, a local woman living in the town next to ours is a part time/full time dog rescuer. A lot of dogs are found on the streets of the area (predominantly hispanic, they tend to let dogs loose, and it's also a big dumping area with large parks north of the town). My area was also a huge dumping ground a few years ago, but that stopped. So she tracked down two little dogs running wild - in a high coyote territory, mind you - skinny, underfed, terrified of people little dogs. She caught Murray, still don't know how exactly, it must have been difficult, and took him to the city shelter where he was given food - he was bone skinny - and was neutered.

About a week later I saw his pathetic, sorry looking face up on the website. Kept going back to it. He was SO SAD and in shock. Still skinny when I saw him at the shelter - I went specifically for him, too. He'd gained weight, but not enough. I got the Guy to agree to let me get him.

And here he is. Everyone likes him, he's getting more adorable as his personality comes out. He plays with Teddy and Baxter and we laugh at how happy he looks. His fur coat is now healthy instead of smelly and breaking from rubbing on it. His tail is spectacular and the fur on his ears has filled out. I think he was younger than they thought - the shelter estimated 2 years old from the teeth, but honestly, dogs don't get their full adult coat like Murray has until, well, they're fully adult. I think he was coming out of his puppy stage. Maybe 14 months old?

Anyway, he's a doll now. I'm waiting for the day he jumps up onto my lap.
The worst part is opening the front door, and realizing I don't have to make sure he isn't lying against it.
The worst part is talking about cooking on the grill for Memorial Day, and realizing he isn't there to eat his traditional first hot dog to fall off the grill.
The worst part is to realize he isn't there to hug first thing in the morning.
The worst part is that he can't lie down on my feet anymore when I sit down on the couch.
The worst part is I can't just go over to him, give him a hug, and smell his clean, dog smell.
The worst part is, I can't go out in the backyard, or look at his food bowl, or his medications, or his dog door, without realizing he's not here anymore.
The worst part is, he's not here.

I want my dog back.


*sighs*

One of Goldy's big brown eyes has an ulcer, and it isn't going away. He saw the vet again today to see if there was any improvement, and according to the vet, it's still there, it hasn't changed. The vet prescribed an ointment to go in his eye along with the drops. And if it gets worse, I'm supposed to give him a call and bring Goldy back in. Otherwise, in ten days. The vet also mentioned the word "specialist". We love Goldy to bits (you have no idea) but it's been an incredibly expensive two or so years. The medication alone is adding up to almost $5k a year. I'm not talking about the vet visits. Just the medicine.

He's sleeping under the kitchen table now.
Never a dull moment at our house. Oh no. It would be NICE to have a dull moment again.

Goldy (see icon) has been running into things more often recently. This afternoon I took a closer look at him when he came in from outside, squinting with both eyes. Looking closer, his right eye had been scratched-badly-and I had to take him into see the vet. He's got ulcerated eyeball. The vet prescribed antibiotic eyedrops, told me to put them in his eye twice a day for 10 days, and bring him back in five days (that would be Tuesday next week). His cataracs are getting worse, which is why he's banging into corners and walls-not so much the walls, but it happens-and door frames.

Poor guy. I'm sure it hurts like hell, but he's not really reacting much to it. I can't imagine what it feels like.
In this case, it means what it really means. The past few days Goldy has been following me so closely he's literally on my heels. When I open the fridge door, he's in there, nosing it out. If I'm in my bed in the morning, and it's late and I haven't given him his breakfast and morning pills, he pokes me with his nose until I goddamn well GIVE it to him. If I'm late giving him his afternoon pills, same thing. He'll come up to me, stare, and poke me until I get the point and look at the time. If I'm in the bathroom, and I wasn't fast enough to close the door behind me, he comes in. He follows me when I say good night to Tall Boy in his bedroom. If I get up from the computer, just for a moment, he'll stand at the doorway and then follow me if I'm not coming back right away. If I'm on the couch reading a book, he lies down next to the couch. If my feet are on the floor, he'll warm them up. He's an awesome footwarmer. If I'm in the kitchen cooking or doing dishes, he's there in the middle of the floor, watching me (and hoping food will fall like manna from heaven).

When he's NOT following my every move, he's under the kitchen table against the wall mostly out of the way.
Good god, I'm going to have to start giving Goldy his pumpkin laced cookies again. He was stinking last night (not because of gas, though, that was part of it...let's say I had to do some butt-pill removal, eh?) but this morning? Holy crap, and all that's...I gave him his breakfast and now he's seeping and farting and the entire computer/den room is full of fart.

CORRECTION: the ENTIRE HOUSE smells like dog fart now. omg
Goldy had an active, rough morning. I took him out for a ten minute exploratory walk of about 50 feet from our doorway, then lured him into the car with a biscuit so I could get him to his vet appointment.

Basically, he's doing fine. There's a "spike" in his kidney results, so the vet is having me scale back on a diuretic he's been taking every day, to every other day. And he's going from two steriod pills to one a day split in half for morning and evening. Once again the vet expressed his amazement at how well he's doing; dogs with hearts in this condition often don't last past 3 or 4 months of it. Goldy has lasted well over 19 months so far. He'll probably go from old age, not a heart attack.

Poor poochio is tired out. I heard him snoring in the back seat of the car as I pulled off the freeway. Right now he's splayed out in one of his usual spots in the computer room, on the earthware tiles, sound asleep.

Spring Break is coming up in 2 and a half weeks. For once, I'm glad the Guy is going to be working, because I really didn't feel right about sticking Goldy back in the vet kennel for a few days like we did last year. I think we'll do a staycation kind of thing, which honestly, I'm fine with.

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