#codeman

January 27, 2014   //  Posted in: Dog-Related   //  By: Emily   //  16 responses
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I never like to write about the bad/sad/mad. I try to reserve the negative and my cynicism, it’s not a side of me that people need to see, unless maybe I just gave myself a doozy of a blister bashing my driveway apart or pulled a rusty pin out of my heel or had to stare down the butt crack of some man buying lumber off me (all of those actually happened, were documented in some form, and accessorized with unnecessary profanity). Blogger barriers are one of those things that leads people to believe that we live some kind of smooth, easy, unattainably beautiful lifestyle–hopefully you know that isn’t the case, ever, for anyone–I just think it’s just a struggle to write about the bad, to find the words, or to be OK with knowing that something bad/sad/mad is permanently documented. Permanent documentation is scary.

I considered leaving this off the blog too, but in the category of “lifestyle,” and the fact that our dog has been a leading character on Merrypad since the beginning, the situation we dealt with over the last week certainly took us for a real ride. I want to remember this and better myself from the experience. Hopefully other dog owners who struggle with bad dog behavior will buckle down and benefit too.

First of all, thank you to everyone who sent well wishes after I posted this photo to FB, Twitter, and IG. Our best dog friend survived an emergency surgery on Saturday morning.

Cody, January 2014.

Cody has eaten a lot of shit, deer feces included. He’s much more well-behaved than he used to be; I’ve known him to secretly consume dishtowels, underpants, foam padding, mail, and even styrofoam (can’t hide it when it static clings to the end of his nose), but thanks to him naturally transitioning off the fabrics and us buckling down big time, we thought that now he was only getting away with the occasional tissue (usually when filled with boogies and left on the coffee table, yum). He started acting off last week. His odd behavior came and went, and didn’t register as something being wrong until a few days ago when he started vomiting. A virus, I assumed, it happens, and usually he recovers with some sound sleep. We snuggled, he puked, we lovingly cleaned up his mess and reminded him that he was a good boy, repeat for two days. When it didn’t clear up itself and he showed no signs of appetite, we called the vet.

See, he was already scheduled to go in for his annual shots and check-up today, but we thought it might be good to have him seen early, just in case.

Based on the diagnosis, he couldn’t have waited, it was already really bad. He received X-rays and was admitted for an emergency surgery on Saturday morning due to an extreme intestinal blockage, a block caused by eating our new baby’s diaper wipes. I’m really sad about it–sick over it, really–and thrown off my game. Whatever it was, when we found out he was lodged, we expected would pass. I’m sure I didn’t tell you about the time he ingested a large, knotted piece of rope that unbraided in his stomach, I thought that would need to be cut out for sure, but if that could pass, couldn’t anything?

This was the first time that we had to actually consider that we might lose him; it was a reality check that 5.5 years is actually past middle age for a Berner. It was a weekend filled with exhausted tears, much family time, lots of comforting, and many positive thoughts. It came with the serious/sad/mad realization that this was something we could and should have been able to avoid, something that never should have happened (…did he learn to push the pedal to lift the lid on the baby’s trash can?).

Cody, November 2012.

He’s coming home tonight, complete with sutures that extend 12″ along his belly. He’ll be sleeping on this brand new dog bed. You’ll probably be seeing lots of photos of him as we stay with him as he heals. We’re so happy this guy made it through.

Cody's 4th Birthday Card.


Comments
  • Cassie Lewis
    3 years ago - Reply

    Emily…we have had our fair share of “dietary indiscretions” as our Min Pin’s vet calls it. I know the guilt, worry and sadness one experiences when the family pet manages to get into one of these situations. So glad Cody is doing well and all of you are recovering! Thanks for sharing!

  • Katharine
    3 years ago - Reply

    It’s so scary when your pet eats something they’re not supposed to. One of my cats ate an entire plastic grocery bag. How did I find out? I thought he had a little dingleberry (I can’t remember who shared that term with me — it’s both funny and gross), so I grabbed it with a paper towel … and it just kept coming and coming and coming. Like Cody and the rope, I don’t know how the whole thing managed to pass through his system and cause no damage. Now that we know he has a real love for chewing all things plastic, we have to constantly monitor him and ourselves.

    I’m so glad everything worked out for Cody and that he’s back home with you guys.

  • Staci
    3 years ago - Reply

    Oh Cody! That last picture of the get well soon card brought tears to my eye. I’m so glad he is OK. I can’t imagine losing my little pest- er, pet, who I love very dearly. What an important part of the family.

  • Cait
    3 years ago - Reply

    SO glad Codeman is coming home tonight! Seriously scary stuff. Wishing him a speedy recovery, and hoping for many more years of howling photobombs!

    • Emily
      3 years ago -

      He can never leave us :-/

      Thanks for the positive vibes!

    • Cait
      3 years ago -

      You’re welcome! And I totally know the feeling, trust me! I had a small “woe is us” moment when Freckleface turned 8 this month. Here’s hoping for many, many more years with the furry beasts!

  • Steven Bone
    3 years ago - Reply

    Wow, I’m sorry to hear about this. This is probably a good time to remind people not to dispose of baby wipes by flushing them down the toilet, as they don’t easily break down and end up doing the same thing to the sewer system that happened to your dear dog. I recently attended a meeting where the guy that runs the sewage system demonstrated how even ‘flushable’ wipes barely break down. There were several instances where flushing foreign materials cost some local homeowners thousands of dollars to repair.

    • Emily
      3 years ago -

      Yes, stories like yours are coming out of the woodwork! Thanks for sharing!

  • Mindy
    3 years ago - Reply

    Emily,
    I’m so sorry to hear this, but am happy he’s going to make a full recovery! When I was a kid we had a 197 lb Mastiff that would eat socks, underwear, towels, etc and thankfully they always “passed” (to our disgust). It’s so weird how some dogs love to eat non-edible items. Glad Cody is going to be okay! I always love seeing him on the blog and I’m glad you shared this story.

    • Emily
      3 years ago -

      Thanks for your note, Mindy :) He is resting and doing OK today!

  • Ruth
    3 years ago - Reply

    Sorry to hear about this, I had no idea that that could happen. My beagle eats her fair share of random and gross things but never wipes. I never even thought about it. I will be on the lookout more now when my sister in law leaves wipes out. I am happy that he made it through and recovering :) Happy thoughts!

    • Emily
      3 years ago -

      I’m as surprised as anyone that he could eat what he does, but not be able to pass small cloths :-/ Thanks for the well wishes Ruth!

  • Strep
    3 years ago - Reply

    <3 Codeman. XOXO

  • Scott
    3 years ago - Reply

    What?! Glad to hear he’s ok.

  • GG
    3 years ago - Reply

    Thanks for sharing – my heart goes out to you guys!! Sick pets are so sad and they can’t tell us what’s wrong, it’s such a gut-wrenching process, but totally worth it for all their love and affection. Snuggle hard when he gets home, XOXO

    • Emily
      3 years ago -

      Thanks for the note GG, much snuggling has commenced!

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