General Non-Fiction posted July 10, 2024


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About Blondie

Bad news

by Wendy G


Sunny is pictured here with his best friend, a beautiful blonde Labrador who in my stories I always called Blondie.

They often do therapy work together, and this photo was taken at the entrance to a hospital where we frequently go to bring comfort and cheer to patients, some of whom have been in the hospital for weeks or even months. Her eighth birthday is this month and her owner, Brad, has been looking forward to celebrating it with special treats for Blondie. 

Blondie is queenly, very regal in her bearing - but also motherly. Even those who are not dog-lovers are drawn to her, so she is much loved, and is the most placid, gentle dog ever. In a nursing home one time, an elderly lady was happily patting Sunny - until she saw Blondie. "I want THAT one!" she demanded. "Bring me THAT one." So Brad and I swapped places.

Our visits are always well received, and both dogs love their work. When they need a break, they lie down together to rest. Sunny shares his water bowl with Blondie, who with a few slurps of her long tongue, finishes the water with delight. They share treats. However, when I offer treats she sometimes forgets her manners and snatches greedily. A bit like a crocodile, in fact.

***

Blondie lives on acreage, and loves the space. She loves running with the family's other two blonde Labradors, swimming in the creek, and she enjoys sailing whenever she has the opportunity. Most of all she loves people.

She never seemed to be a curious dog, like Sunny is famed for being. Sunny is known for stopping to watch people working on a car in their driveway, fixing a roof, flying a kite - anything. But, dogs are dogs, and apparently, a few weeks ago, Blondie got curious. She ingested some rat poison from a shed on their property. It was in a locked container, but somehow she broke the container and got into it. Labradors, of course, are very food focused. A trip to the emergency veterinarian saved her life. Initially she showed improvement, and everyone hoped and prayed that she would soon be back with us.

Blondie has not been to work for several weeks now, and I've been missing her a lot, as well as her calm and capable owner. We made a good team. 

However, she has never properly recovered, and seems to have nerve damage. She now has trouble walking. The effects of ingesting rat poison can be long-lasting and can cause a sudden and rapid decline after an initial improvement. 

***

Today I was devastated to hear that Blondie is not only not recovering well, but declining. She will probably not return at all. 

I am heartbroken, as will be all who have met her. Everyone who meets her, loves her. I've only known her for eighteen months. I can't imagine her family's distress.

I can't face the thought that she might not even be able to celebrate her birthday. 




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July
2024
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