No joke...my dog must be mentally retarded. I wish I could sugar coat it because he is the most loving, caring, sweet, 70 lb lap dog you have ever met...but, if I am being honest, he is dumb as rocks. To add to it, I think he is trying to commit suicide. By eating pacifiers. I believe he is trying to exit the world in some sort of symbolic tragic final scene illustrating his plight since children came along and shattered his golden only-child existence. It's quite dramatic - and totally fitting to be my dog. Cuz there would be no way I could ever end up with Lassie. No no...I get the Lenny of dogs.
As I write this, my sister is rushing my loving, stupid, idiot of a dog to the emergency room, because we think he may have eaten another pacifier - and when I say another, I mean, if he did, this would be his 4th. He must be so bat shit crazy as to think he is a cat that has nine lives. He is a Catahoula after all. He does jump over things like a cat. He likes to lay on your lap and glare at you like a cat. He for sure must think he's a cat. But he's not - he's just a dog with parents that he thinks, love to dish out tens of thousands of dollars to surgically remove pacifiers from his stomach. Because we have. And continue to. Because we love his stupid ass. But it may honestly bankrupt us.
JackJack (aptly named after the multi-psychotic baby from the Incredibles that is super cute one moment then turns into the devil that destroys shit the next) has been diagnosed with Pica - an obsessive compulsive mental disorder, usually found in humans, that causes them to eat weird shit like paint chips or soap or cigarette ashes. My dog apparently has an obsession with rubbery plastic - or exactly the rubbery plastic found in Soothie brand pacifiers. It's so bad that when we had #2, we banned them from the house - just as a preventative measure. It seemed to work - until it didn't.
The first time he ate one of these apparent tasty morsels, it cost us $6,000 to remove. The second time, we caught it early, and were able to medically force him to puke it up for a bargain price of $450. The third time - he must have buried one in the dirt for over a year, because #1 hadn't used them in over 12 months, and yet somehow, he found it and ate it. That was the big one. That one cost a grand total of $11,372 to remove - complete with emergency care, emergency surgery, emergency after care, etc. etc.- all in different locations of course- while Hubs was traveling and I was at home alone with a baby. Ya. It was awesome. I swore that if he ever ate another pacifier, I would have to let him die, because I couldn't afford another $12k out of pocket to get it out of him. That I would just respect his wishes to die and let him go. Please note, my dog is not allowed to get pet insurance because he is a "known offender" - no company will insure him. But I love my dog, I love my dog. Friggen JackJack!!
This time, while we are in Tulsa for Thanksgiving, my sister is staying at our house and watching the dog. She knew the dog's history, but in a moment of distraction left a Soothie that her son uses, unattended. Minutes later it was gone. Nowhere to be found. Frantically she called me, hysterically crying. She fears the dog ate the Soothie.
I, calm as can be since this isn't my first rodeo, ask a series of questions designed to assess the situation. I have been through this so many times I could qualify as a fucking triage nurse. After getting the answers I needed to devise a treatment plan, I advise her to go immediately to the emergency vet for a medically induced vomiting. The time elapsed from the missing pacifier to that moment was only 30 minutes so a violent puking should expel the pacifier if it was in there. I tell her this, because, despite what I might have said the last time, I will continue to save my retarded dog, because I love the fool. He was, hell, he is, my first child. He has sure as hell cost me more than any of my human kids, so I will be damned if I am going to let him kill himself. I would miss him too damn much. I love my dog, I love my dog. Fucking JackJack!!
Just as I was finishing this, I got a call from my sister - the pacifier was indeed found in his stomach, and luckily was caught soon enough to puke up - the cost for this round is still unknown. But this scene is all too familiar to me. I now have 4 of these specimans in my hope chest, along with my human children's artwork and pictures.
At the end of the day, our dogs are our children too. Often, they come first, or third, or whatever their birth order, you love them, and would do anything to keep them alive, just as you would any of your children. And just like your children, you love the dumb ones just as much, maybe in some sick way, a little more, because, well, they need it. And when all is said and done, you love your dog, you love your dog...Forever JackJack.
Foul mouthed, outspoken and pretty much an eternal realist.