Thursday, August 22, 2013

The Misadventures of Henry Top Gun Walker: Henry is Attracted to Disaster

As a year-old puppy, Henry has the uncanny ability to get himself into mischief. Sometimes I look at what he has done and I can't believe a 6.8 pound dog pulled off such destruction. The most notable of Henry's misadventures occurred back in April on Jared's 25th birthday.

For his birthday, Jared and I had planned to open presents and then meet friends for dinner at one of our favorite Mexican food restaurants. See key word "planned". Things obviously didn't go as expected. As Jared used a knife to open the tape on a package, Henry got in the way at the last and worst possible second. I watched this whole scenario play out, and it initially looked like Jared just tapped Henry on the nose with his knife. When nothing happened right away, I didn't think anything of it...until Henry's nose started dripping blood.

Even at this point, I wasn't worried. I just thought it was a scratch...until Henry sneezed and blood sprayed everywhere like a mini gunshot. I about lost it. Fortunately, the wound happened before our vet closed at 6 p.m., so I put everyone in the car and we hurried to the office. I called ahead to let them know we were coming.

As I tell this story, I'm sure it sounds like I was very calm. But you should know me better by now. I certainly was not calm. But I had to keep it together because one, I was driving and two, I didn't want to upset Jared any more. As I said, I watched the whole incident happened, and I knew Jared touching Henry with the knife was a complete accident. Henry didn't even seem like he was in pain. He just seemed very confused about what was dripping from his nose.

When we got to the vet, the techs rushed Henry into an exam room. I almost started weeping but again, I kept it together. Barely. They soon called us in to talk to the vet. He asked what happened, of course, and then explained Henry's cut had gone deep enough to require stitches. The vet planned to put a row of stitches on the inner and outer layer of skin to make sure Henry's nose healed properly. Henry would also have to stay overnight so they could ensure he wouldn't suffer any negative side effects from the surgery anesthesia. We agreed.

When Jared and I left the exam room, all the vet techs gave us dirty looks. I'm sure they have seen some pretty horrible abuse cases, and I felt dirty being lumped into that group. But what can you do? These things happen, even to cute puppies like Henry. I scheduled a time to pick Henry up the next morning.

The next morning, this is what my boy looked like when I picked him up:

 Sad, huh? It was very obvious Henry had some work done. Jared felt even worse than I did. He was afraid Henry would hate him. But as soon as Jared came home from the hospital that day, Henry climbed in his lap and leaned against Jared. Of course Henry didn't associate his vet visit with Jared. That is beauty of dogs, they love unconditionally.

A few weeks later, we took Henry back to the vet to remove the stitches. Everything healed very well and Henry's sense of smell did not seem affected. After the vet removed the stitches, he tried to prepare me for the discoloration on Henry's nose. I guess he thought I would be horrified, but I was relieved to see how clean the wound had healed. This is what I took home that day:

See that little discoloration? It's barely noticeable. Over time, even the discoloration faded, so you can't see any evidence of Henry's misadventure unless you look closely. Recently I took Henry back to the vet for his annual check-up and shots. When I walked into the office, one of the vet techs said, "hey look, it's Henry!" She turned to the other vet techs and said, "remember the dog who cut his nose?" All the other vet techs nodded and said, "oh yeah!"

Of course I felt GREAT they remembered my dog by his mutilated nose, but then again, Henry is a memorable little guy.