Thursday, June 11, 2009

the concern of wolves

Annie is sick. Her disease came on suddenly. A few days a go she was barely limping, then overnight, she became nearly paralyzed with a stiff pain in her front legs. I called the vet, who thinks she has a crippling case of Lyme, and tomorrow we're going for antibiotics and shots. She'll be okay, but she's not herself. Last night she couldn't even move. It's so hard to see a dog you know can pump uphill in harness during a blizzard—barely able to stand. I have been beside myself with worry.

Jazz ran away this morning. You just can't know the panic. Sibes are not farm dogs. They run away. They can't be trusted with small animals. They are wolves on the lam. Anyway, he loped out the screen door I left open by mistake, and ran off towards the poultry and Finn. (Both of which he would've happily ripped apart). Yet, he didn't. Here's what happened: I saw him run off, but was so occupied with helping Annie hobble outside to relieve herself, I couldn't stop him. I gave up on him. All I could do was hope he'd come back to me and not hurt the livestock. But in my head all I could think was "One dog is dying, the other ran off" As Annie whined from the aches of holding up her own body weight, I started to cry. Sometimes everything happens at once. It's too much.

Then Annie howled from the pain of standing, and collapsed into my arms. Jazz heard this (and in a highly unSiberian husky way) turned on a dime and ran back to his girls. He trotted right through the threshold of the screened porch door, head high, golden eyes searching for the pain. Then he sat beside us. He watched me holding Annie, limp and whimpering. He saw me teary and breathing heavy. He gave up his golden chance at blood and freedom to make sure we were okay. I love him so much. He's a good man.

I hugged him and Annie on that dirty Vermont porch like they were the most important things in the world.

I have no idea how any of you are getting through this life without dogs. You're stronger than I.

50 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I so feel your pain. I could NOT go through life without dogs, nor without any of MY dogs. They ARE my life, despite the fact that I have a husband, children, cats, chickens, etc. My dogs are my life. And I totally get the despair you felt at watching Jazz run off - my husky, Annie (short for Anvik), is the same - and is an inveterate runner and chicken eater. The minute she escapes, which is rare, but it happens, my heart just drops into my stomach, because I simply CAN"T catch her. Does no good to chase her. I just pray she doesn't get hit by a car, like her brother Moose did last year (and killed - ) or eat someone else's chickens who has threatened to shoot her if she ever tries again. And for you to have your Annie so so sick breaks my heart for you. I can't imagine. I couldn't bear the crying in pain - or the worry about Jazz. I can't believe he came back. That is SO unlikely, but so cool. My favorite quote is "When the Angels are busy, God sends a dog." You have two angels. Kiss them from me in Western New York tonight. Sending lots of love to them and doggy prayers that she will be well.

Coffeedog

June 11, 2009 at 10:03 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

thank you Laurie

June 11, 2009 at 10:06 PM  
Blogger SWEETHEARTS MOM said...

I can't handle more stress. i was very in love with Bull. That is why I found him a home where he can lope through the mountain in colorado with his mom and dad and their horses. I really hope she gets better soon.

June 11, 2009 at 10:07 PM  
Anonymous kandy Gray said...

hugs to annie and hope all is well. at the worst of times it seems as if it is the dogs that are the ones supporting you; even if it is the dog that is hurting or dying. i still miss my husky, she "held my hand" as she dyed, and i swayer it was to give me support and to tell me it was o.k.

i wish you and ours luck and good health, and many more sled rides. and remember, it is still a sled ride, even if Annie has to sit in the sled for a while.

kandy from Canada

June 11, 2009 at 10:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do doubt you've done your best so far and going to get the vet's help. Focus on giving comfort til them and think about your history together. Remember that it is not how many times you fall that count but it is how many times you get up.....

Regards,

eric

June 11, 2009 at 10:12 PM  
Blogger Tracey said...

So sorry to hear about Annie...I hope she is okay. My childhood dog died from Lyme disease, which we unfortunately thought was just "arthritis" for years. By the time we figured it out, it was too late. I'm so glad you are able to get Annie to the vet quickly and hopefully get her all fixed up. Dogs are wonderful. My dog Charlie is laying here next to me as I write this, and he is pulling for Annie too!

June 11, 2009 at 10:16 PM  
Anonymous Susan said...

Thinking about you and wishing Annie a speedy and complete recovery. I know only too well the worry you're going through. Nearly lost my dog in January, but then we finally found he'd eaten a foreign object. Once we got it out he recovered quickly, but the 2+ weeks of up and down and near-death just made me weep with frustration and worry and fear and heartache.

Best wishes to you, Jenna.

June 11, 2009 at 10:16 PM  
Blogger Kathleen Stoltzfus said...

If I could have only one creature to walk through life with, it would be a dog. By my side, at my feet, my partner in whatever I do.

June 11, 2009 at 10:27 PM  
Blogger Leigh said...

I am so sorry that Annie is suffering through this. You, the dogs, all of your animals bring so much into our lives through your blog. Anything that we can send you by way of prayers and wishes truly pales in comparison to what you have given us over the last couple of years. But, there are a lot of us out here that can pray for her, and we will. Strength in numbers, even though you live alone. Keep us updated if you feel up to it.

June 11, 2009 at 10:34 PM  
Blogger Shannon said...

Your post was both heartbreaking and inspirational. To have one dog suffering and another take off would be more than a person could be expected to bear. To have Jazz turn around and run home to help Annie is life at its most beautiful. I too could never make it without dogs. All my best to Annie for a speedy recovery.

June 11, 2009 at 10:35 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

Seeing your dog sick and in pain is a terrible thing. Keep the faith that Annie will be fine after a trip to the vet. As for Jazz, I'm not surprised that he returned to his pack -- you & Annie. Good luck!

June 11, 2009 at 10:42 PM  
Blogger John Taylor said...

Jenna,

I am so sorry to hear that Annie is sick. As a multi-dog owners ourselves we would be devastated if anything happened to either one. We will keep you and Annie in our prayers.

John

June 11, 2009 at 11:20 PM  
Blogger Turtle said...

Healing vibes being sent your way. I lost a malamute years ago to a tumor that grew so suddenly there were no other options. I also just lost my girl in april to a stroke. Having been raised with sled dogs, we had huskies, malies, and wolves I know how dear these creatures are, how smart and communicative they are with their "people". They are family, not pets. I am sure the doctor is right and with a little time things will return to normal. Poor dear though, you feel helpless when you can't give an immediate sure.

June 11, 2009 at 11:31 PM  
Blogger Rhonda Jean said...

I feel your pain. When my dogs ran away a few years ago all I felt was terror. I hope Annie recovers as soon as she gets her treatment. Give Jazz a hug from me. He's a good dog for coming back to you and Annie.

June 11, 2009 at 11:38 PM  
Blogger bellananda said...

oh, honey!!! how awful for you, and annie (lyme disease! ugh!), but how wonderful for you to have such a caring, sweet guardian angel in jazz.

my dogs are my purest joy. i don't know that i *could* live without them. we are truly blessed people. :)

***hugs***

June 11, 2009 at 11:48 PM  
Blogger Rois said...

Wishing whatever is best for Annie and a warm smile to Jazz,Good dog!
Rois

June 11, 2009 at 11:52 PM  
Blogger Allisone said...

I'm not getting through it by myself. I've got a sibe named Annika of my own.

Speedy recovery wishes to Annie.

June 11, 2009 at 11:56 PM  
Blogger granny said...

I hope you and Annie are feeling better soon.May tomorrow be a brighter day :0)

June 12, 2009 at 1:16 AM  
Anonymous Carrie said...

I currently don't have any dogs, but our last family dog hung on to the point her body was lost to old age but her spirit never wavered. The day we took her to be put to sleep, she smiled at us and wagged her tail just like always. That was the heart wrenching part, knowing that she wouldn't leave if her body wasn't failing her. We loved her so much.

Although, I do currently have 8 cats. Our miracle kitty, had been an outside feral that we had befriended after her brothers and sisters went of on their own paths, we had every intention of letting her be an outside friend, but after she had her litter, her terrible upper respiratory infection(as most outside cats tend to have) seemed to steadily get worse. Until one night when my sister found her, gasping for air, blue, and seeming like she was on deaths door. Unfortunately it was discovered at 9pm at night, and too expensive to rush her to a vet immediately. So we waited overnight. That was the worst 12 hours of my life. Not knowing what was wrong, it seemed like she wouldn't make it. I'll never forget when the vet saw her, she snatched her up and yelled, "she's blue!" and ran out of the room with her. In the end, due to the infection, her lungs collapsed and the air from them was trapped in her chest. How she made it I'll never know. But the vet was able to re-inflate her lungs and draw the pressure off her chest. She made it and to this day she's the happiest most grateful cat that we have, and a healthly little chunk now I might add.

I know how heart wrenching it can be to watch your beloved animal family be in such distress, and to not know how to help them. It really is too much to deal with sometimes. There's lots of people praying for her and sending her good energies, I just know Annie will pull through. I just wish there was more I could do for you and Annie but pray. *Hugs* to all three of you!!!

And lets hear it for Jazz, your knight in shining armor!! Good Dog Jazz!!!

June 12, 2009 at 1:16 AM  
Blogger MrsL said...

Hope Annie's on the mend soon.

MrsL

xx

June 12, 2009 at 1:28 AM  
OpenID lovestitches said...

I confess I'm not a dog person but reading this bought tears to me eyes because I am definitely an animal lover and my cats are to me what your animals are to you. I so hope Annie is on the mend soon.

June 12, 2009 at 2:07 AM  
Blogger Melonie said...

I hope she's up and about soon with the antibiotics, etc. Makes me miss my Annie, who we had to leave behind in the States. Hugs to your whole pack.

June 12, 2009 at 2:13 AM  
Blogger Bad Hippie said...

Oh, Jenna.

I have four cats, and watching my young male struggle with struvites and nearly die this past winter was awful. I couldn't sleep 'til his medication kicked in, and religiously gave him antibiotics three times a day and took him to the vet for urine tests 8 Fridays in a row.

Granted, he's not a work cat (and is pretty much not useful at all -- even with mice), but I love him. He's my family. I feel your pain, and will keep you and Annie in my thoughts this weekend.

Please, please post an update so we know how she is doing.

As for Jazz...wow. I've always been a little scared of big dogs, but Jazz has restored my faith in them. I think you've found your soul mate. :)

June 12, 2009 at 5:51 AM  
Anonymous Kelli in CT said...

Anaplasma, another tick borne illness may be the culprit. Have your vet run a 4DX snap test. It will test for Lyme, Anaplasma, E. Canis and Heartworm. They can get the results while you wait. Good luck, both Lyme and Anaplasma are treatable.

June 12, 2009 at 7:04 AM  
Blogger Anna M said...

Lyme disease is one of my biggest fears from living in Vermont. Not for me... for my Corgi girls. I very much hope that the shots fix Annie up really quick. Having a dog in pain always tears me up and I can't get anything done until I can fix it.

You'll be in my thoughts today.

June 12, 2009 at 8:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh I really hope Annie gets better soon - you have beautiful dogs!!!
Wendy A
in PA

June 12, 2009 at 8:15 AM  
Blogger Eleanor said...

Jenna, Annie will recover!! I know it is painful to watch her right now, but lyme is so treatable now with strong antibiotics. I have a friend in Richmond whose dog is under treatment for Lyme disease right now. We live in GA, where Lyme is present in the deer population. I encourage all of your readers to have their dogs vaccinated against lyme. The vaccination provides us with great peace of mind for our hounds and our fox terrier. Our prayers are with you and Annie.
Eleanor, a TN girl on her way home!

June 12, 2009 at 8:17 AM  
Blogger Tara said...

There is nothing on this earth that loves you like a dog. Nothing and no one. I'm sorry to hear about your kids - I DO know that panic, and well. Up until Tuesday we had five dogs, but our oldest finally gave up the ghost. They work so hard all their lives for us, and ask for so little.

I'm glad that Annie will be okay, and I understand the period of irrational thinking you always have in these times when you're convinced they won't be okay. As for Jazz, we had a dog like that (she's gone now, too). She was a husky-wild hybrid, and unstoppable. She NEVER stayed at home and was quite wild in spirit, but never failed to step up when we needed her. It always surprised me, too.

June 12, 2009 at 8:28 AM  
Blogger Jody M said...

I feel your pain. I so hope Annie's recoup is fast.

I never truly felt loved until we got a dog. I was skeptical to say the least. I grew up with cats. He's always with me, next to me, outside near me. He plays rough with my husband, but he's my buddy.

And wow about Jazz.

June 12, 2009 at 8:54 AM  
Blogger The Old Man and His Dog said...

I couldn't live without my dog. It's because of her that I found your blogs. We had malamutes in common. Life is just not as bright without a dog.

I know what you mean about Mals and Huskies running and enjoying killing small animals. I've cleaned up my share and still smell skunk on her when she gets wet as she's been sprayed at least three times tangling with skunks, but I wouldn't trade her for the world.

June 12, 2009 at 9:22 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

what a very good man indeed. I hope your Annie is feeling better, its so hard to see animals-anyone- in pain.

June 12, 2009 at 9:30 AM  
Blogger R said...

Hang in there Jenna, as a fellow dog lover, we have two labs, we can understand your pain! We'll prayer for Annie's quick recovery..

R Dean "Slowdog"

June 12, 2009 at 10:06 AM  
Blogger R said...

Jenna, I pray for Annie's quick recovery. Thank goodness she has somebody like you that cares so much for her! As a fellow dog lover, life would never be the same without faithful dogs by your side..we have two labs and currently five pups, so we feel your pain..Hang in there, it will get better soon!

R Dean "Slowdog"

June 12, 2009 at 10:09 AM  
Blogger Wood Finery said...

It certainly sounds like lyme. I had an onset of arthritis in both of my shoulders. OMG!!! It is was so acutely painful! I couldn't shake hands or high five anymore. It pretty much ended my massage career. So from what you say your dog is suffering I can only imagine how painful it is for her. Sounds like the vet will help! I honestly miss my days on the farm.
www.allonewood.blogspot.com

June 12, 2009 at 10:26 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Jenna, I'm so sorry! May God bless you and your dogs. I'll pray for a speedy recovery for Annie!

June 12, 2009 at 10:48 AM  
Blogger kate said...

I get it, Jenna. My very first dog was a Huskie. He just had to break free and run. Hit by a car. I have a German shepherd now -- my second one -- always by my side. The love that a dog gives to us humans is amazing.

Let us know how the treatment goes. I've been worried about Lyme -- so common here in SW Vermont, but not every dog is susceptible, and some vets don't recommend the vaccination, so it's hard to know what to do.

June 12, 2009 at 11:47 AM  
Blogger Rita said...

I also have a 15yr old Siberian female named Jewel. She has kept me going thru alot. I always feel that I have a special bond with her over my others 2 dogs.
When she has been sick - she always looks at me with those eyes as if to say Mom I'm hurtin - please help me. She is also a runner with a strong prey instinct even at her age. There's no stopping her.
My thoughts are with Annie and you. Huskies are strong willed dogs - so she's a fighter! So happy that Jazz came back without incident. he had to amke sure his girls were ok. Give yourself a hug Jenna!

June 12, 2009 at 11:58 AM  
Anonymous Shannan said...

Jenna,

My heart goes out to you! My 2 dogs are like my kids I can not bear the thought of seeing one of them in pain. I have a Husky/Golden retriever mix who has occasional seziers and when he has them my heart just about stops. They are not bad enough for him to be on med's but they sure do scare the crap out of me. Best of luck to you, Annie and Jazz. Get well soon Annie we are thinking of you.

June 12, 2009 at 12:07 PM  
Blogger MGM said...

It takes a strong person to love so deeply, don't sell yourself so short.
You're an amazing woman. Thanks for sharing your joys as well as your tribulations! I'm so glad this heartbreaking story ended so well!

I wish you all many blessings.
Melanie - Cleveland, Ohio

June 12, 2009 at 12:14 PM  
Anonymous Mari said...

Let's face it, dogs are your children (even if you have human children). They can help you through so much. My thoughts and meditations go out to you and Annie.

June 12, 2009 at 1:35 PM  
Anonymous pgrass101 said...

I hope that Annie mends soon

June 12, 2009 at 2:11 PM  
Blogger YD, sometimes with Samantha & June said...

Dogs are part of our family. They are our kids. When they are in pain, we are too. When they suffer, we suffer as well. I am sorry that your Annie is sick and I really do hope that she heals up soon.

June 12, 2009 at 2:17 PM  
Blogger Christine said...

Three years ago in December my oldest Aussie came down with Lymes. It is frightening and although he doesn't sound as bad as your dog it was just about instant healing once on antibiotics, or as we called them "bees". He loved his bees and was disappointed when they stopped.

The next month my son had Lymes. Yes, January. Dr. didn't even think to look for it until I told her my dog had just had it.

Frontline and Lymes vaccine.

June 12, 2009 at 2:26 PM  
Blogger Carol @ TheWritersPorch said...

This made me cry...thank the Lord Jazz came back!

June 12, 2009 at 2:28 PM  
Blogger Kristina said...

Your post made me cry. Our dog died of old age over a year ago and I still miss her. I want another dog, but haven't had the heart to replace her yet. I wish Annie and speedy recovery and was overjoyed to read that Jazz came back to his pack.
I love reading your blog. You truly are an inspiration to me.
My thoughts are with you and all of the four and two legged members of your family there on the farm.

June 12, 2009 at 3:08 PM  
Blogger Michele said...

My Malamute/Rottie loves to run, AND climb chain link fences. I finally had to top my fence like a military installation just to keep her home and out of the neighbors chickens. It was either find a way to keep her home, or the doggie police were going to take her away.
I, too, cried when I read this post.... and I am at work. I had to tell my next customer why I was all teary-eyed!
Our pets look to us to help them when things aren't right in their world, and it is heartbreaking when we can't. I am glad the vet can make Annie well, and that Jaz came home.

June 12, 2009 at 4:13 PM  
Blogger Sandra - outrasartes said...

Jenna, I do feel your pain. I lost my malamute Nevoa last December and still miss her a lot. She was a wonderful dog that filled my life.
I do hope Annie get well.

June 12, 2009 at 5:48 PM  
Blogger Happy Days said...

I am so so sorry that Annie is in such fierce pain. And I am sorry that you have to watch her in pain. It isn't easy I know from experience. I had a Shetland Sheepdog that had a stroke and I was scared as you and devastated. It took her a while but she did get better. I will most certainly put you and Annie in my prayers znc wishing her a speedy recovery...debbie

June 12, 2009 at 9:35 PM  
Blogger chris groom said...

I am so sorry:( Things will get better.

June 14, 2009 at 8:11 PM  
Anonymous grammakru52 said...

Dear Jenna
I know what you mean about your dogs.I have a small Jack Russell Terrier.she's my life support.my youngest son used to drive roll off truck for a recycling company here in S.C.he had found her in a box at the front of the container he was picking up.it's hard to believe someone threw her away,but they did.she wasn't any bigger than the palm of my hand when we got here.she quickly become my husbands dog.he loved her so much.i lost my husband 5 years ago this coming Oct.she's what i cling to,to help me get through the days.she's my buddy and my pal and i would be totally lost without her.her name is Destiny and i love her as only a mother can.i hope your Annie is doing better.god bless ya'll

June 22, 2009 at 1:06 PM  

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