Dogs Get Sick, Too

Just in time for My Favorite Domer’s return for summer break, the Sheltie has come down with a urinary tract infection.

“Mr. Piddles” wet his little bed last night. He was rather damp when I let him out for his customary Good Morning hugs, but I didn’t think too much about it.

Must have been hot, I told myself — until I saw a wet spot on his mat. And felt said spot. And sniffed my damp fingers. And smelled pee.

Trying not to react too negatively — he’s got delicate feelings like other Shelties — I greeted him and sent him outside.

I went over the check-list of his bedtime routine. Yes, he’d been out. Yes, he’d pottied. No, he hadn’t had any water.

So why had this dog who’s normally as tidy as a nun suddenly soiled his bedding?

I asked Mom, who kept him while I traveled to Notre Dame to fetch the Domer, how he acted during my absence.

He missed you, she told me. He drank a lot of water. And slept a lot.

How was his appetite? I asked.

Fine.

Hmmm. The pieces of the puzzle were starting to come together.

I called the vet’s office, explained everything to them, and asked if dogs can get kidney or bladder issues.

Of course, they said. We’ll need a urine sample for the lab to analyze. Either bring him in or have him pee in a container.

Oh boy. I live for first-time events like this.

As I was trying to decide which option was more doable, Domer showed up wanting breakfast.

I need your help, I said, having decided against hauling a wet Sheltie anywhere in my clean car.

We’re going to what? Domer asked.

Shrugging, I dug out a Styrofoam cup. Domer leashed up “Mr. Piddles,” and we all went to the back yard.

He’s not going to do it, Domer said, as he and the dog sauntered through the grass.

Sure he will, I countered.

Eventually, “Mr. Piddles” lifted a leg, and I was Johnny-on-the-spot, shoving that Styrofoam beneath him to catch the stream.

All right, Domer said.

Easy.

I wrapped the cup in tin foil and took it to the vet’s office. Ten minutes later, we had the results.

And the sulfa drugs to treat the infection.

I’ve spent more time than I care to admit cleaning “Mr. Piddles'” bed today. Washing everything, Clorox-ing the wet spot, airing out his mattress.

And hoping I don’t have to do it all over again tomorrow.

Should be a wonderful upcoming ten days.

What are you looking forward to in the next week?