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woman’s best friend

NaBloWriMo day 20.

I was supposed to post a recipe tonight, but things get crazy from time to time. Lately it feels like things are crazy all of the time. So instead, I’m cutting myself a little slack because NaBloWriMo is kicking my ass and I’m starting to hate it. Today is a Kaweah post… because Kaweah was sick yesterday.


ahhhh! it’s the kaweahsaurus!



For those who follow my inanities on Twitter, you know that Kaweah had a UTI yesterday. My dog has an amazing threshold for pain. She’s a lab, after all. They swim in icy lakes for fun. She’s taken me down by clocking her thick skull against my knee without even noticing. Kaweah has only cried in pain two or three times in her doggy life. So yesterday afternoon while she paced about desperately in the yard, squatting to pee, but unable to urinate over and over again, I gave the vet a call. Nope. Booked. No appointments until tomorrow. Just wait until tomorrow. Meanwhile, Kaweah was staring at me. She was panting, crying, pacing, and wagging her tail nervously.

trying hard not to bite remy



I feel a strong responsibility for this furball. I held Kaweah and wept into her neck when I got news of my sister’s death. Kaweah normally dodges pets and hugs (she’s an odd one), but that day she leaned against me and let me cry. She slept on the bed with me after each round of chemo and would put her paw on my shoulder when I had coughing fits. When I sat in the bathroom at 3 am trying not to throw up, she would walk in and sit next to me until I returned to bed. I tell people she isn’t especially smart (our observations have more than confirmed this), but she is incredibly sweet and I love her. She is a good companion when poop and dead animals aren’t involved. She’s my girl.

the indignity



I won’t go into my back-and-forth with the vet’s office, but eventually I was able to get some antibiotics (they wanted a urine sample – I can’t get a urine sample if SHE CAN’T PEE). Within 30 minutes of tricking Kaweah into eating the pill, I got her to settle down and take a nap. Her rapid, shallow panting became slow and steady breaths. Before I knew it, she was having doggy dreams and chasing bunnies in her sleep. By the time Jeremy got home, Kaweah had a nice potty break and she was her happy self again.

her favorite rock



Kaweah is doing great now. Thank you to everyone for your sweet tweets yesterday and today. xxoo

57 nibbles at “woman’s best friend”

  1. Tartelette says:

    I can’t show this to the pupps …they would fight over her :)
    Glad to hear Miss K. is fine now!
    And I love that she’s got a Ratatouille Remy!!

  2. Elisabeth says:

    I felt like crying while reading your post and I am glad that she recovered, she is such a lovely company in your “butter stories”!

  3. Manisha says:

    Is Patagucci her fave brand, too? So glad she’s doing well.
    Just 11 more days and then I do NaBloSiMo (National Blog Silent Month). I enjoy that A LOT!

  4. CrazyVet says:

    I cried as I read the description of your special relationship with your canine. It never ceases to amaze me, how animals understand and communicate without words. You’re lucky to have such a companion.

  5. Rosa says:

    Kaweah is such a sweetie! I’m so glad she’s doing better!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  6. barbara says:

    That brought tears to my eyes Jen. Such a special friend. I can imagine her comforting presence when you were going through chemo.

  7. Michelle says:

    Making me want a dog too!

  8. Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary says:

    So glad Kaweah is doing better. My Moose had a pinched nerve in his back and the poor baby was whimpering in pain. Just killed me. I was never so happy to see him back to his old, lovable self. Love the pic with Remy!

  9. Fiona says:

    I’m so sorry! Good on you for insisting you get some antibiotics for her. We love our dogs so much, and they’ve been such excellent companions, we hate it when they’re in distress.

  10. Bridget says:

    Yay! So glad she recovered quickly.

    Ah yes, I remember doing NaBloPoMo last year, and it really makes you want the month to hurry up and get itself over with, doesn’t it? Of course, I’m still planning to do it again this year though.

  11. Kristin says:

    She may not be smart, but there’s obviously SOMEthing special going on in that brain of hers. Glad you were observant & persistent & got her the meds.

  12. Caitlin says:

    I am so so glad K is better. What a special thing you two have – makes me miss having a dog, cat, or horse around. And kaweahsaurus just makes me giggle.

  13. Asianmommy says:

    So glad that she’s feeling better now. Love her favorite rock pic.

  14. Aran says:

    I’m so glad she is better now. I’ve never had a dog myself but I know how they quickly become part of the family and I can imagine how you must have felt to see her in pain. Just like kids, I know. She’s just so beautiful too and glad she is better!

  15. jie says:

    oh..sorry to hear that..
    so glad that she is doing great now..they are our friends..i have a dog and i know how you feel

  16. Kim says:

    She’s beautiful. Glad she’s feeling better!

  17. Crystal says:

    Glad she’s back to herself! I got my lab mix from a rescue when I was going through a rough time — she’s a cuddler since she had some health issues early on, but she’s also a dork who’s made me laugh just about every day :) Definitely like family and rather like a tangible way for God to give a hug :) All our allergy-prevention tricks haven’t been working lately, though, and we just got lab results that the vet tech summarized as “she’s allergic to everything and should be living in a bubble!” :) We’d break our budget for her health before ours, but I can’t wait until she’s well again.

  18. Pam says:

    As the mom to 2 black labs, I know how much they are a part of your life and your family. Sometimes, not too smart but always know how to make you smile. Glad she’s doing better

  19. France says:

    I’m glad that she’s ok. It’s hard to see our loved pets suffer. She’s beautiful. She seems to be a nice dog for you.

  20. Amy says:

    So glad she’s doing better, Jen. What a sweet companion and doggie soul.

  21. Unplanned Cooking says:

    Your pooch is adorable! And what great pics. NaBloWriMo is tough, but hang in there! You’ll have a great amount of writing to work with once you’re done. I find, like most things in life, getting started is the hardest part.

  22. Michelle in Chicago says:

    Kaweah is an AWESOME dog! Love your photos of her. We have a black lab mix and I find that my photos of him usually don’t turn out that great because he is black. Do you have any tips? (I just started taking a great beginner’s DSLR class.) Thanks!

  23. Kristina says:

    Count me in among those who had tears in their eyes. What an awesome dog. When our pets are ill, it’s especially distressing. Glad she’s doing better.

  24. TheKitchenWitch says:

    That’s a special doggy you have there, Jen. And you are so genuine in your love for each other.

  25. Cate O'Malley says:

    Oh poor puppy! Who can resist those eyes? So glad to hear she’s feeling better!

  26. Sil says:

    So good to hear Kaweah is better. She is an incredible dog. Amazing how pets can be so empathetic with us.
    Beautiful photos, as always. :-)

  27. Joanne says:

    Ah, relief for both of you, at last! thanks for persevering with the office, and getting puppy-dog the medicine that she really needed. My male lab/shepherd is also so tolerant of pain that it really shocks us when he cries out…. what an awful way to get my full attention!

  28. Lauren says:

    It’s so hard watching our animal friends suffer and feeling powerless to do anything about it. Good for you being pushy with the vet! Glad she’s feeling better now.

  29. JvW says:

    I am crying from your post. What a sweetheart she is. The part about sitting with you in the bathroom – amazing. I’m so glad she’s feeling better.

  30. Collette says:

    I’m really glad she’s feeling better now. There’s something amazing about the unconditional love we receive from a pet.

  31. Allie says:

    I love Kaweah, my god that photo of her on the snowy rock is gorgeous as can be… How did you name her? And where’s that Remy doll from?! I want one!

  32. Melissa says:

    I love her SO MUCH. I’m so glad you made this post all about her.

  33. Liz says:

    So glad that she is back to herself, and you’re so very lucky to have such a wonderful girl in your life! :-)

  34. marianne says:

    *Big hug* to Kaweah – she IS such a sweetie. Hope she feels better soon!

  35. Pat says:

    Hugs to you both…I know too well about fretting when the furry one is ill. So glad she’s made a quick recovery! Love the photos.

  36. Debbie says:

    I’m glad Kaweah is feeling better. I am an absolute sucker when it comes to my dogs…

  37. Phoo-D says:

    Yeah! I love Kaweah stories and am so glad to hear she is feeling better. That is one sweet puppy!

  38. Dani says:

    What a sweetheart! So happy she’s better. Love when you include pics of Kaweah in your posts.

  39. Eesh says:

    A lovely post. Dogs in pain break my heart, so its good to hear she’s doing better. I note that she chases bunnies not pigeons in her dreams.

    PS: I loved your tweet about Subaru. The boy and I are both Subie-lovers, and when I told him Jen Yu of URB fame drives one too, he replied “well, of course, all super-cool people drive Subarus”.

  40. SallyBR says:

    I was afraid to read your post, but kept going. So glad that she is recovered!

    My Jack Russel is anti-hugs, the anti-lap dog by definition, but when my Dad died and I broke down completely, he jumped on my lap, licking my tears until there were no more. It was unreal, I’ll never forget it.

  41. m says:

    Just discovered your blog via a search for Daring Bakers Buche de Noels (I’m fantasizing about Christmas), and I’m really enjoying it (not the part about your sick dog though, of course).

    I’m a former lab owner and I know just how sweet and lovable, and incredibly tolerant of pain and illness, they are, and my heart broke reading the desription of your pup pacing around in discomfort and pain. I’m so glad she’s feeling better. That last picture of her combines so many of my favorites: snow, the outdoors, and dogs (labs especially)-what a beautiful photo and beautiful dog. Hope she’s completely recovered now!

  42. Donna says:

    I had a wonderful black cat that was like Miss K. I’ll never forget the time I was so sick and he would not leave my side. When I was shivering and told him I was so cold, he actually stretched himself out and laid against my body giving me all the warmth he could. Unconditional love wrapped in a furry package.

  43. Mrs Erg├╝l says:

    I am glad to hear that Kaweah is doing fine now! What a lovely post Jen. Kaweah is a lucky lab.

  44. Shoshanna says:

    So glad to hear that Kaweah is doing better now! Yay. :o)

  45. Lori says:

    Oh my God, I have tears in my eyes. What a dog! Glad she is feeling better.

  46. JessW says:

    Yay Kaweah! :) Glad to hear the good news! Give her a pat for me~

  47. Amos says:

    hey yu, glad k is back to being her silly self. in va, winnie picked up on my stress from moving and started losing her hair, lost weight. we did blood work- nope, all good. when we picked her up last week from boarding in texas while we were in mexico, she was back to herself again- fat and happy and hairy. seems she needed a vacation herself! :)

  48. Jenny says:

    Poor little poppet, glad she’s doing better now. What a sad face in the second photo :(

  49. emhuze says:

    Oh, so glad puppy is better.
    I love that she knows how to give sad eye… as in the ‘trying hard not to bite Remy’ photo. They, like little children, really know how to work it. Love it.

  50. Y says:

    I’m so glad to hear she’s feeling better! Cute picture of her and Remy :)

  51. Denise @ There's a Newf in My Soup! says:

    Dooley & Diver send hugs. Glad she’s doing better. Unconditional love and companionship – I will always have a big, slobbery Newf, or two, in my life!

  52. Margie says:

    Oh poor sweet, Miss K., I’m so sorry she was under the weather, but so glad to know that she is now on the mend. These babies are our world!

    (Sweet hugs to you, Miss K.)

  53. Deborah says:

    Aren’t labs wonderful!?! I have my 13 yr old, who was diagnosed with an enlarged heart and pancreatitis, after surviving cancer surgery; the vet told us to prepare ourselves, she couldn’t go on much longer. That was over a year ago, she is still amazing us all. The vet can’t believe she is still walking, let alone breathing! She still enjoys her walks, tries to play, and wags that magnificent tail when she is happy, and I know she hangs in there for us. She worries about what will happen if she’s not here to take care of us. She’ll go when SHE decides we will be okay with it.

    Although we decided we are getting too old for any dog we can’t carry up the stairs, I can’t imagine not having a lab in my life! “Best friend” barely describes what they are for us.

  54. Luney says:

    Poor Kaweah. My cat Hadrian had chronic constipation all through his kitten hood. He was getting subcutaneous fluids every week. Once he’d gotten too many and was hypotonic and then we had to made a midnight trip to the 24-hour clinic. The next day he was back to his ole vicious self. I love him unconditionally, no matter how many bleeding scratches I go to bed with and however many times I have to shoo him away from the carpet and the parakeet (and how often he retaliates). I’m pretty sure he loves me too. I raised the little bugger, after all. I don’t know what we’d ever do without furry family members (and no I don’t mean Uncle Bob and his unfortunate beard).

  55. jenyu says:

    You all are so sweet. Thank you for the well wishes. Kaweah is her happy silly self again. And I am very lucky to not only have her as my companion, but all of you as part of my community. Thanks so much!

    Manisha – you crack me up.

    Michelle in Chicago – I expose for the dog in general because she’s so dark. It’s a tough balance. Just practice a lot and you’ll get the hang of it soon enough. Good luck!

    Allie – Kaweah is named for the Kaweah-Ridge Range in the Sierra Nevada of California. We probably should have named her Bonkers instead :) I got the Remy doll from my friend in Florida. I don’t know where she got it, but it’s sooo cute.

    Melissa – thanks, babe :)

    Eesh – yes, Kaweah doesn’t really know what a pigeon is (thank goodness!) :)

    SallyBR – oh!! that says so much about our furry companions.

    Amos – awwww, Winnie girl! :( So are you all settled into the new place? Hope they treat you right. xxoo

  56. Jennifer says:

    Hi Jen,
    I just stumbled upon your blog when I was tryng to look for good dumpling recipes, thanks for all the hard work you put into your blog, its really beautiful! I have a chocolate lab, not the sharpest tool in the shed, but i love him to bits and pieces :) Your dog is so cute and I’m happy to hear that you got the UTI taken care of, labs are the best!

  57. kaiulani says:

    just started reading your blog today and i love it. i’m glad to hear kaweah is okay now. i am a dog lover too and my bull mastiff/ black lab mix looks nearly exactly like kaweah, which made it extra hard to read that she was sick. so happy she is doing well, thank you for your wonderful blog :)

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