Friday, January 30, 2015
As you saw last week about the mini picket fence modification that we set up so that Henry can be a little safer from the agave plant, you are noticing some of the modifications that we are setting up to keep him safe and help him navigate. And for those of you out there who are giving our home owners association the benefit of the doubt for having heart, I urge you not to be so kind. Sorry, but our HOA has been described as ruthless. There is much truth in that, so we are hoping that the mini fence will be overlooked and bigger issues in the neighborhood will addressed instead. If they saw how we rigged the contraption preventing Henry from falling into the pool, they would likely put a for sale sign in front of our house as their request for us to be banished from their community. Yikes!
Anyway, we have made another slight modification in order to help Henry navigate getting in and out of the front door. We read about marking the area with scented oils. (And I addressed this in a comment a short time ago---scents to avoid for seizure dogs are Rosemary and Pine. I remembered Pine off the top of my head but had to go back and refresh my memory by consulting the book.) So, in efforts to help guide Henry closer to our front door (and not the garage, agave or bougainvillea plants) we have applied little felt patches that have scented oils applied. We are not ones to have perfume, cologne, air fresheners, etc so choosing a scented oil bordered on the impossible for us. We finally settled for the scent of Ylang Ylang (don't quote me on the pronunciation but I think it's spoken: E-lawng E-lawng) but I do know that it is a yellow flower and that was fitting since our home is a sunny yellow.
The scented pads seem to be helping Henry just a little bit. Nothing dramatic yet but we have noticed that he is not the speedy learner he once was so we continue to go at his pace. Slowly. Or, EASY, as the command we use to let him know to slow down (as some obstacle is upcoming). So, we try to reinforce his positive progress and overlook his mistakes and just take thinks day by day. One of the funny things, though, is that you can tell he has brushed himself against the little stinky pads a time or two because now it is not unusual for the top of his head to smell like Ylang Ylang. I guess the more practice he gets, the less likely he will be to bump into the the little smelly disks.
We tried making the doggy door another (different) scent but then Cupid stopped using the doggy door and demanded that we start opening and closing the slider for her. Since Henry still does that pattern pretty well, we removed the Lemon Blossom stink pads from the doggy door flaps and went back to their original state. If we see that Henry needs help later with that pathway, we will choose a Cupid approve scent before trying there again. You know what they say, "You can't please everyone!" There should be a qualifier that follows that statement that specifies, "especially when there is a cat involved!"
Thursday, January 29, 2015
Last week, on the holiday Monday, Henry had a big day! First, we took a long walk around our neighborhood. He is working on navigating his way around again now that he cannot see. While his pace was pretty slow, we are so proud of him since he finished the whole walk without getting confused, having to be carried or even getting frustrated. The walk, that would have taken the 3 puggers about 20 minutes to complete back in the day, took him about one hour but boy oh boy were we ever proud of the little man. He did a bang up job.
After that we had to run to the vet's office to pick up some refills of a couple meds he was running low on. Then, it was on to go get gas. It was our lucky day! It was a mere $1.99 a gallon. So, we got a fill up for $17.47. Woohoo! The next stop was the car wash. (It had been a while since the car had been washed so we really could not put that off any longer or we'd have neighborhood children finger painting in the dirt the words, "wash me!")
Finally, once home post errands, there was yard work to be done. It was at this point that Henry had decided that he had had enough. He parked himself inside and napped as the people tended to the outdoor tasks. Even though he didn't pull any weeds, or even so much as "water" the lawn, he still had a big productive day (and a long rest time after that).
He is a good good boy. #HenryStrong
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
This week, I am on a work trip. Every year my company has an annual work conference. What I am about to say may give you all the wrong impression. This year, the venue was a Royal Caribbean cruise. It was not a vacation. We work from sun up to sun down and the reason that we go on a cruise ship is because the room and board is considered cheap in comparison with us going to some random city, getting hotel rooms and then meals for +/- 30 staff members. It is all right there. All at hand. And the fact that you really cannot contact your family means that this is good "team building" and "work time" even if it makes us all crazy. So, really, believe me. This was no vacation.
In any event, this left the other OBP parent home alone. Sadly, Henry is now more than one working class stiff can handle alone. His needs are great. So, G'Ma and G'Pa drove down from Maryland and have stepped up to fill in gaps in care where Henry needed the extra help.
While we have Grammy locally, Grammy is far too busy of a woman to give practically all day every day to Henry. Grammy has 3 kitties, a husband and many hobbies and interests that take much of her time. Plus, this would be a good time to give Grammy some time off from her Henry duties for a little while.
So, semi-retired G'Ma and freshly retired G'Pa journeyed down again from the North to give Henry the time and attention he needs and deserves. They had a nice week. It was a quiet week but Henry had someone there all day every day. And even though I was gone, Henry's anxiety did not spike severely. We have shared about how he's been struggling with anxiety as of recent but that seems to be improving.
During my work week on the ship, Henry was able to sleep in a little later, take a short morning walk and have a little more wake time during the day. This helped him to stay asleep through most of the night. Of course, he got up 2x in the middle of the night on the night when there was a steady rain. Ugh. So, that meant towel drying a pug a 1:20 AM and 3:40 AM only to have the damp boy hug up to you in the people bed right after. But other than that, Henry had good days with the relatives.
I am back on land and with my sea legs hung up until next year. There was nothing better than coming home to your blind furry old man and seeing his tail wag like a big out of control windshield wiper. And if I haven't mentioned in a while, did you know that Henry IS SUCH A GOOD BOY?!
#HenryStrong #GoodBoyHenry #TeamHenry #ThankYouGMa #ThankYouGPa #IMissedHenryThePug #HenryIsSuchAGoodBoy
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Looking forward to your captions in the comments.
Monday, January 26, 2015
As we have recently shared, Henry is unofficially completely blind. While he may be able to tell if his space is bright or dark, he cannot see shapes, objects, movement, etc. He is working on mastering our home and relearning the neighborhood. We are sure this is through mostly smells and hearing (although his hearing is not that sharp, either). It is relieving to see that a few of his whiskers, all of which were lost during chemotherapy, are now starting to grow back. This allows Henry to get just a little less close to a wall, table leg, chair, etc. Having whiskers help animals navigate and when Henry lost his, it put him another step behind the 8 ball.
But what we really wanted to share, was that now that Henry is blind, he can cruise with us through the car wash. He doesn't see those big scary brushes, rags and soapy slather. He just hears it now and that part doesn't seem to bother him. We tested this last week. The car was in need of a wash, so we threw caution to the wind and took him with us. His little ears perked up at the wacky sounds but he didn't flinch or seem to be at all bothered. So, NOT being able to see all of this has now benefited us. Henry can go through the car wash with us anxiety free. Who says no vision doesn't have perks?
Friday, January 23, 2015
Over the weekend we were out running errands with Hank. One of our stops was the pet store. Usually Henry would go in the pet store, but he was already pretty tuckered out from a long walk, so only one of us ran into the store.
At the checkout, were super cute Valentine treats. Valentine's Day is still a few weeks away, but I couldn't resist picking up a sweet treat for Henry.
Of course he smelled it as soon as I got back to the car! We gave him a small little bite and saved the rest for later.
Thursday, January 22, 2015
The other day, right after I got home from work, I was prepping to take Henry for a walk. Well, we were out the door and I thought I had everything but I forgot one of the most important things: poopy bags! Knowing the bags are stored just inside the front door and that Henry would be a good boy and patiently wait for me as I popped back inside then out again, I left him there for a quick second and told him to wait. He did. (Uh, that is because, HE IS SUCH A GOOD BOY!)
Anyway, I did not realize it at the time but we had an audience observing this. Our next door neighbor (the ones who got a puppy over the summertime) saw this. When I was back outside and we were on our way, he commented in amazement about his dog would NEVER have completed such a feat of patience.
I winked at the neighbor and told him that it had been all the years of practice that we had on that command. And I patted Henry and reminded him that he was truly a good boy. As we walked, my heart filled with happiness knowing that Henry does truly know his basic commands and is a pretty good listener. He had always been the smart one. And this day proved it Not only #HenryStrong but #HenrySmart!
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