Tuesday, July 5

Oh the aches and pains .....

Roxy is now 17 yrs. old
Roxy came to us as a rescue around the fall of 1993 ~ Candace & I picked her out and brought her home. She was basically a solid black puppy that looked like a pot belly pig ..... curled tail and all. Gene called her pig, partly because of her tail and partly because of the things she would choose to bring us from the yard (can we imagine a dead bird or was it a chipmunk?) that had maggots on it & dumped into the girls' bedroom?  Then having to pick up not only the carcass, but the wiggling wormy things as well? Only to have her bring it back in because we failed to dispose of it properly??  We got Roxy because our kids had not had their 'own' puppy ~ our older dog at the time was obtained just before I got pregnant with the girl's. So, with Faith dog getting older why not go ahead and get a pup, it might keep Faith younger longer! NOT!! Now we had an energetic puppy and an old grumpy dog wishing she would leave her alone. Faith lasted two more years.... I remember saying how it was the longest 2 yrs. of my life ~ trying to keep the peace and keeping the two from eating each other's dog food. When Faith finally left us, having Roxy around did help ease the loss somewhat.  While Roxy filled the dog void, she was a bit of a 'fear aggressive' dog. We never really knew if she would actually bite anyone, but she scared more than a few folks.

Enter Ginger, October 30, 2005. When I saw an opportunity to foster a displaced hurricane Katrina dog I thought it could be a good way to test the waters on getting another dog without having to commit to keeping it if things went bad. I also loved the idea of being a part of a big reunion with a Katrina family & their dog.  Well.... Ginger had no family looking for her so we adopted her.  We could only guess how old Ginger was.... 5yrs. old? 8 maybe? Seems that Ginger was this super 'social' dog ~ a backyard breeder dog ~ and managed to teach the old lady new tricks (a.k.a. how to sniff b***). Roxy's problem was mainly lack of socialization. The two have been great together until just recently, when Ginger gets a grump moment and appears to attack Roxy, causing her to cower in a corner!! Ginger also shows signs of hearing loss and some facial atrophy, but still has her energy (even with her skinny appearance) at age 14 or so.

As Roxy aged we invested in cataract surgery in one eye to help her see better and so she could interact with the other dogs ~ she was so frustrated that she could not see the toys & join in ~ (by now we had another rescue that we fostered and Daniel adopted). Unfortunately we cannot do anything about her loss of hearing!

Recuperating from attack
Roxy survived a horrible dog attack a couple of years ago. Slowed her down a little.... arthritis worsened. And over the past couple of months she has started coughing when pressure is applied to her chest area or she exerts herself playing or coming up the stairs, etc. A recent x-ray showed a lesion on her right lung ~ Doctor says unless she had a major injury there for it to be scarring (not the dog attack), he is pretty confidant it is cancer.
Arthritis makes this painful
As I watch these two age it makes me aware of how we too have our own aches and pains, many of the same nature.   My mom has painful arthritis. Gene's dad & my mom both have breathing issues, hearing trouble, and have had lens replacements for cataracts too.
                                                       
Gene has back issues from disc herniation, and just had elbow surgery to repair a nerve that was causing numbness in his fingers. Sister Debbie is due to have that same surgery this Thursday.

It seems that many in our family have snoring / sleep apnea / sinus issues. Myself included. Yes Gene, I made my appointment!! Some have Mitral Valve or disautonomia and need medications to control symptoms. We lost my dear mother-in-law and an uncle to Cancer, as well as have had several survive cancer in the family & one beginning treatments.

I started to title this "oh the aches and pains of aging", but then I realized that not everyone that is hurting is 'older'. And what is 'older'? Older than me? Older than my children? No, because even they are feeling some pains. Aches & Pain, physical and emotional, knows no age.