Thursday, May 15, 2014


One magical day back in High School I was introduced to Robert Benchley unfortunately not in person but to his writing. I have been a dyed-in-the-wool fan of his writing and acting abilities ever since. I always knew one day I would find myself living my very own version of The Tooth, The Whole Tooth and Nothing But the Tooth Benchley's famous essay on going to the dentist. I never knew it would involve Annie's dental visit. Believe me the visit was nowhere as amusing as the essay.

The day passed very slowly for both Artie and myself. It just proves how much we are attached to Annie; we missed her terribly. All day long I worried about her. If her x-rays would be clear, if her sonogram would turn up any medical issues, would she tolerate the anesthesia as well as in the past?

A phone call from Hope Veterinary Clinic confirmed she went through her surgery without incident. Her x-rays were clear but her spleen appeared mottled on the sonogram necessitating a discussion and a need to decide on next steps. Artie and I were quite upset with this new development. The unspoken word - cancer - was on both our minds.

Our little girl was very groggy when we arrived at the office to take her home. Dr. Horvat, the dental surgeon, spent quite a bit of time with us going over what he found and what was done. Apparently Annie had two bad molars; both were extracted. One looked perfectly fine outside but the root was dead most likely from some sort of mouth trauma. The other tooth was good but the inside gum was eroded to the point where the root was exposed necessitating the removal of the tooth. The overgrown gum was a case of Gingival Hyperplasia and that was scaled back. Her upper right canine had recession of the gum but Dr. Horvat was able to repair it by cleaning the area then suturing the gum together thus closing the gap.

We headed home with our little girlie, three different medicines and instructions on how to care for her until her follow-up visit in three weeks' time. While we waited for car service, she spied a young husky and always one to make friends tried but couldn't muster up the energy to stand up. She opted for howling instead letting out a bloodcurdling, snout pointed in the air howl that seemed to go on forever bringing a smile to my face, scaring the daylights out of my brother, causing some giggles from the other pet parents and thoroughly annoying one old guy sitting in the far corner of the waiting room.

She ate very little, spent most of the evening sleeping and gave us a very hard time when taking her pills. I will pick this narrative up in subsequent posts. There is much to say concerning canine (and feline) dental health as well as more to Annie's recovery story.

Finally home.

Annie's IV bandage ready for removal.

Asleep for the night.

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