Friday, August 04, 2006

A Penny for your thoughts!

I returned to work on Tuesday after a week's vacation. When I got to the sign-in room in New Haven, I found Bill, my regular engineer, looking a little despondent.

“Why the long face," I asked.

“Ugh!" He said. "While you were on vacation, I inherited a Cockapoo puppy from my aunt.”

“I guess it’s not going too well then?”

“Well, actually, it was going fine till yesterday…and then he swallowed a penny.”

Being a new pet owner, Bill was very concerned. He raced the puppy to the local veterinary hospital where the vet gave the dog medicine to induce vomiting. It didn’t work. He then took X-rays of the dog’s stomach and put a camera probe down the dog's esophagus and into it’s stomach, but try as they might, they still couldn’t find the penny. After several more X-rays they finally spotted Old Abe resting comfortably in the puppy’s intestines.

The vet kept the dog overnight for observation, in hopes that it might pass a penny-laden poop but it never did. When they released the dog, they told Bill that he'd have to check the dog’s stools for the next couple of days. Bill had to work, so he enlisted a friend to stay at his house with the puppy. Her responsiblities were to feed the dog Bill's grandmother's meatballs and then follow it around his backyard until it moved it’s bowels.

As the night progressed, I heard Bill on his cell phone giving her instructions. He was saying things like, “The rubber gloves are on the counter,” and, “It’s getting late, so follow him around with a flashlight.”

“That’s a great friend you got there," I said.

“If we don’t find the penny, it means more tests and maybe surgery.”

“Those tests must cost a bundle.,”

“Thanks for reminding me. I’ve spent 948 freakin’ dollars already.”

“Wow! “That’s one magical pup you got there. He turned a penny into $948 overnight. He’s like the hen that laid the golden egg.”

“I just want it to lay the copper penny.”

“By the way… What did you name this dog?”

“Snickers. My aunt named him.”

“Maybe you should rename him Inflation.”

I could tell that this puppy had already stolen Bill’s heart, but he was sick over the vet bill. He kept complaining that the vet hadn’t even done anything except a few lousy tests. In an attempt to make Bill feel better, I told him about our late cat Casey.

"Casey got into weekly catfights, and he would always come home beaten up. The vet told us if we got him neutered he'd be less aggressive. He had the operation but it just gave him more reason to be ticked off. His fights continued and his ears soon looked like they'd been trimmed with pinking shears. His cuts turned into abscesses, and the abscesses would eventually burst. We were constantly bringing him to the vet for surgery (they would insert a drain), requiring at least an overnight stay. Then there were the stitches and antibiotics, then to top it all off, he got hit by a car and needed his jaw wired. The vet recommended that he have a root canal, but I told him that the cat didn't have dental. Casey lived till he was 18, and in all that time, I figure I must have spent thousands of dollars on him.”

Bill smiled and said, “I'm feeling better already!”

When we rolled into New Haven at the end of the night, Bill finally got the word from his friend. He then got on the PA system and announced to the whole train; The penny has been found!” The passengers had no idea what he was talking about, but the all of the crew members had a good laugh.

When I went to work on Wednesday, I asked Bill how the patient was.

Not bad,” he said, “except that he crapped on my new $2000 rug and then peed on my new couch.” Bill said he was at first angry at the dog, but then Snickers looked up at him with those big puppy dog eyes, and it melted his heart.

I knew exactly how Bill felt. I then told him the story about how my dog Brenna ate my wallet when she was a puppy. I had gone to bed and left my wallet in the back pocket of my uniform pants. Sometime during the night, I heard chomping and when I turned the light on, I found my wallet, license and credit cards strewn around my bedroom. Each of these items had incriminating bite marks in them.

BAD PUPPY!” I shouted. But Brenna just tilted her head and looked up at me with those big cocker spaniel eyes. I just couldn’t be angry anymore.

I collected the contents of my wallet and put it back together. I was going to put it on my nightstand, but my wife told me that the dog would probably grab it again. I figured she was probably right and I hid the wallet under my pillow.

The next day I threw on my uniform pants, completely forgetting that my wallet was under my pillow. As Murphy’s Law would have it, that night a Connecticut State Police trooper pulled me over on I-95 for speeding. When the trooper asked me for my license and registration, I instinctively reached for my back pocket. It then dawned on me where my wallet was. I told the officer, “You’re not going to believe this but… my dog ate my wallet…


Brenna said...

Woof! Woof! Woof! Woof! Woof!

bobby's wife said...

How about the night Brenna, as a ten-week old puppy, got into the pantry and ate a whole pound of melting chocolate. If she wasn't pooping (outside--she was VERY well trained!), throwing up (we had her sequestered in the kitchen at that point), she was totally bouncing off the walls--running up and down the stairs, jumping on and off furniture, racing from room to room--she COULD NOT sit still!!! We had absolutely no sleep that night, afraid she would eventually die from a heart attack!

Luckily she survived, and a few days later went on to swallow the cat's small furry catnip mouse-- whole! This elicited yet another trip to the vet where we were informed that: "this too shall pass!"

Think of how much money we all could have saved and invested if we didn't have pets, but think how devoid our lives would be without them!

Bobby & I probably could have saved enough to buy a summer vacation home on the Cape by now! But...I'll take my cats and dogs 24/7 any day!!!

Anonymous said...

That makes CENTS!

Jamie said...

Reminds me of when my two dogs ate my 2 sons little league candy. When we arrived home, the family room was covered with little bits of tin foil. Two dogs that looked like they were drugged. Next day they had the best smelling poop in the neighborhood. Good old dad was out $50 but the memories PRICELESS


Bobby's wife said...

How about when they eat those chocolate coins with the heavy foil wrappers still on them right out of the Christmas stockings. Now, not only do you have to worry about the fact that the dog just ingested the dreaded chocolate, but also has shredded metal passing through the intestinal system!

Yupp, been there a couple of times too! Thanks Santa!

Anonymous said...

A friend of mine once told me about a piece of advice he received from the dog's vet:

"I've never seen a dog die from eating chocolate, but I have seen many succumb to heartworm!"

Food for thought! (No pun intended!) Get your dog checked and treated today!

Tom said...

How did I not see that coming? I mean, you set up the story perfectly, I should've seen the "dog ate my..." joke from miles away. But I didn't. And I laughed. A lot.