Mom suggested I write you and tell you how things are going here.
I’m busy, but not as much as I used to be in SC when I was “in school.” This is real life. Mom works in her reclining chair – she reviews medical cases for attorneys. She has to set a timer to remember to get up and move around some every so often. That’s when she practices our cues with me. She says I’m very good!
About four times a week, we go out somewhere – the grocery, to get her hair done, to visit Miss Genny (her daughter) or to have lunch with Mr. Loch (her youngest son). Mr. Loch tries to pet me when he shouldn’t and Mom scolds him about it, but he just grins at me and tells me I’m a wonderful girl! Miss Genny really likes me, too, but she’s more obedient about not petting me when I’m working. Mom had me “say hello” to Miss Genny when we went to the store where she works. Then Miss Genny got to pet me some. She thinks I really help Mom a lot!
About once a month (when Mom is up to is) I go to a Red Hat meeting with her. I wear my red-feather clip on my Gentle Leader – like a little red hat! With my purple cape I’m right in fashion! The ladies are so nice to me! They all “say hello” to me, then I doze and “dream doggie dreams” as Mom says. At the end, we usually have snacks, but I don’t get any – just the treats Mom gives me for being very obedient!
We went to a really big Kroger the other day. The electric cart ran out of “juice” and Mom had to walk to the front of the store. She was trading hands for her cane and – klang! She dropped it. She said, “Cane!” and I went right to it, picked it up and put it right into her hand. She was so pleased! I got a little bit of a jackpot – I think because it had fallen under the shelves and I had to paw it out from under in order to pick it up. We have worked out a routine – if it’s something up high, and is unbreakable and that I can pick up, then Mom reaches her cane up, hooks it off the shelf or the rack, and I pick it up and bring it to her to put in the cart. I picked up two of those folding laundry baskets last week! Mom was so proud of me!
My allergies have made my immune system low, and I got an infection around my mouth. At first Mom thought a yellow jacket had “zapped” me, but when the sore got larger and spread, she took me right in to the vet. He gave me an antibiotic and put me on Prednisone. I don’t like that Prednisone! It makes me sooo thirsty! But I’m almost tapered off of it, and I’m feeling a lot better. The antibiotic worked real fast. Once Mom knew what was going on, she washed around my mouth twice a day with plain soap and water. That helped a lot, too.
Mom brushes my teeth every day – she sings a little song about brusha-brusha-brusha while she does it. When she starts singing it, I know what’s coming up, and I try to hide from her, but she calls me and I come, and get my teeth brushed. Yuck! And my ears get cleaned at least once a day – sometimes 2 or 3 times, if I’m working on a yeast infection. Mom really works on keeping my ears and teeth clean. I wish she didn’t, but she tells me it’s to keep me healthy so I can help for for a long time! I like that, so I try to cooperate – but it’s very hard!
Today is a “down” day for Mom. She is hurting a lot and is very tired. But we went downstairs and practiced paying at the counter. I like lower counters – I don’t like high counters at all. But Mom reminded me that we never know what kind of counter we’ll be at, so we practice both high and low.
Poppa has not been well this spring and summer. He gets out of breath and tires so easily, and his chest gets uncomfortable. Mom worries about him, but she says there is nothing else we can do for him than the doctor is already doing. Poppa worries about not being able to take care of Mom right, and Mom worries about not being able to take care of Poppa right. They love each other an awful lot. They told me they had been married for 32 years this year. That’s a long time!
I trot on the treadmill nearly every day – even when Mom doesn’t feel real good, she takes me down to the library where the treadmill lives and I trot on it. After a rest, I get my breakfast. That’s a BIG treat!
I wish you could see my latest task – whenever Mom is through with the dishwasher, I “flip” the door closed! Mom says I’m really saving her back on that one!
Mom loves the way I help her with the laundry, and I think it’s fun! I’m kind of sad when we are done. I’m attaching a few pictures Mom took of me doing the laundry. She says it’s very hard to take pictures of me when I’m standing and working so close to her, but I think they came out OK!