I was reminded of on of my long gone Saint Bernard fur babies this last week by two separate blogs from others. The first from Jan at Laughing Dog Arts and the latest one is Patti from Arkansas Patti. She has a story about her furbaby Mightie Dog that brought Lady Annabelle of Dunkirk to mind.
When Annabelle was but 10 months old, we took her to have a pre op visit to the vet. It was time to have her spayed and while there the vet took Xrays and found she had hip dysplacia I looked on as Joe and the vet both cried over the X rays. The vet had had a Saint when he was in college and that dog did not survive the corrective surgery. That's where they shave off the head of the femur and let it go back into the hip socket. They do the surgery differently now but this was 35 years ago.
To cut this story down to a manageable size, the dog did well from the surgery. But she always was a mess when it came to trimming her nails. There was no dog groomer in our area who would just do a 150 lb slobbering anxious dogs nails.....hmmmmmm I wonder why???? So I had to learn to do her nails while she bellowed, yowled and generally made me feel like crap. Besides, do you know how strong a Saint Bernard is???? Add to that the fact I cut a nail short once and she bled. Now we have a dog with a Sara Bernhardt complex. So I asked the vet for something to calm her down. He gave me Valium and told me "give her 5" and to give it to her in peanut butter.
I gave her 5 tablets in a peanut butter in bread treat. In 20 minutes the dog looked like her skin was going to just fall off of her body. She couldn't get up, she was laying in a puddle of slobber and kept giving me the stink eye from hell. I called the vet and told him what I had done. Silence on the other end of the phone. Then he said...I said to give her 5 mg.......not 5 of the 5 mg tablets. HUH?
Told me I had to get her up, get her to move, drink water, pee, eat.....uh yeah, like that was gonna happen. I tried. I worked on her for 3 hours, trying to get her back to being Annabelle not a lump of Saint Bernard colored dog flesh. NADA. At the 5 hour marker she kinda staggered up and went outside to pee and then just laid down out there. I cried, wrung my hands, cursed the world. I was so upset with myself.
Within 8 hours of course she was fine. I was so happy that I didn't realize that I had not taken advantage of the time she was "rubber dog" to trim her nails. Dam.
A couple of days later the funniest part of the tale happened. Shelley got a peanut butter spoon and was sitting watching cartoons. The younger Saint, Priscilla kept bugging her about licking the spoon. So she went and got another spoon for the dogs. She offered it to Annabelle too. Within a minute, Annabelle was down on the floor looking like she did when I gave her the Valium. Just for giggles I went and got the clippers and I'll be darned if she didn't just lay there like she was drugged. For the rest of her life, you could give Annabelle peanut butter and she would become docile and fake drugged. Darndest thing ever.