a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Still More Miscellany

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Still More Miscellany

Elderly dog sleeps soundly: Jake always used to wake up quickly and easily. Now he sleeps deeply. When I get up in the middle of the night--as in last night, where I had a blooming headache and needed to go get a drink and some assorted lovely drugs--he sleeps through the light turning on, through me getting out of bed and getting my robe and slippers, through Tika getting rowdy on the bed and leaping off, through us both scampering downstairs (Tika more scampering, me more on the staggering side), through the sliding door opening and closing as Tike heads into the yard for a perimeter check.

Jake used to startle to his feet if one touched him while he was sleeping. Several times lately, when I've needed to wake him during the day (as in, "Wake up, Jake, it's time to go to bed"), I've had my hand solidly on his body, rocking him back and forth, without a response for quite some time. It's a very odd thing.

Elderly dog sometimes drags:The housemate & boyfriend took the dogs for a walk yesterday evening while I was out (yes! without the dogbeasts!), and reported that they had to quit a bit early because Jake seemed to be dragging and tired.

I had no such problem with him this morning.

I've mentioned this in previous posts--sometimes when out for a walk, he just slows down and looks like he really doesn't want to keep going. And then the next day he'll be fine.

In the middle of the night last night, he did eventually come downstairs and lay under the table while I nursed my drink and waited for the light and went without the meat and cursed the bread and all that. When it came time to return to my boudoir, he stopped at the bottom of the stairs, looked concerned, started to lift a foot and changed his mind, and just looked at me, tail drooped. So I picked him up and carried him up, depositing him right onto the bed, where he said, "Thanks, that's what I needed," and settled right in to sleep.

This is the second time in the last few weeks. He was never one to suffer being carried around like a lapdog. So this, too, is unusual.

And yet today he was a frisbee-chasing maniac who, in his nonfrisbee interims, gallumphed all over the parkland and hillside.

Eye goop: The last time I had him at the vet--I think because of all the goop that suddenly started appearing in his eyes all the time--the vet said he didn't really see anything but gave me some soothing ointment to apply in case the eyes were irritated. This was months ago. I regularly --daily or twice a day--clear wads of eye-goop the size of jello pudding cups from both eyes. The weather's different, the blooming plantlife is different, I dunno--I thought maybe it was something in the yard (like plunging into the mulch to pounce on a thrown toy) that was aggravating it, but in the one week we were out of town to AZ, his eyes never stopped gooping.

I'd like to know why, at 12.5, this has started happening. It worries me in a vague, I've-got-plenty-of-bigger-worries-like-the-technician's-reactions-to-my-mammo-last-week sort of way.

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