Monday, September 27, 2010


"Such short little lives our pets have to spend with us, and they spend most of it waiting for us to come home each day.  It is amazing how much love and laughter they bring into our lives and even how much closer we become with each other because of them." 
~John Grogan

Dogs mean a lot to my family.  They make our family whole in some strange way.  We have a love for them that we only understand, so I am not even going to try to begin to explain.  My dog is Macy.

To say that I love my dog Macy is an understatement to those that know me well.  I love that dog more than is humanly normal, if you think about it, it's probably borderline psychotic.  My brother Mud bought her for me when I was a senior in high school, ten and a half years ago!  We instantly formed a bond and I became inseparable from this little tiny long haired chihuahua.

"It's just the most amazing thing to love a dog, isn't it? It makes our relationships with people seem as boring as a bowl of oatmeal."~John Grogan

I don't have kids yet, so she is my baby.  I can remember carrying her in the mall when I first got her, like I said, we were inseparable.  I had her wrapped up in my old baby blanket so no one would see her.  As I am shopping in Dillard's a worker lady comes up to me and asks to see my baby.  I was 17 at the time, and I probably looked like I was 12, "Did she really think I had a baby?" I open up the blanket and low and behold there is my little princess.  The worker lady was a little shocked at first, it was so funny to see her puzzled look.

Macy has always been there for me.  She loves me unconditionally.  Really, in a strange way, over the years, Macy has taught me how to show my love and affection, you see I have really never been very good at it, at all!  She seemed to bring me out of my shell that I had remained in, and still do at times, for so long for reasons unbeknown to me.  I can't really explain the relationship that I have with my dog.  I just absolutely love her to pieces.  My husband once bought me a sign for my house that said, "The highlight of my day is that moment when I get home to be with my dog." 

Of course, seeing my husband is the highlight of my day now, (love you hunny) with my dogs being number two, but you get the drift.  I already know I love Macy way too much.  However, I have also really come to love and appreciate the fact that my husband understands my love for her.  He gets it.  He gets me, thank God.  And even better, he loves her too.    


A couple of years ago I found out that Macy had a heart murmur, a LOUD one.  I was crushed, totally and utterly heartbroken.  What did this mean?  Was she not going to live the 17 years that chihuahuas are supposed to live?  What was I going to do without her?  This couldn't be happening to my dog.

The vet put Macy on digoxin.  She immediately became weak and was not herself.  Knowing more than I should about digoxin, the levels of the drug you are supposed to check, and heart failure in people, I knew Macy probably had too much of the drug in her system and needed to be on a smaller dose.  Crushed, I called the vet and asked some questions.  Not getting the information or help that I wanted and without going into a lot of detail and info that I probably shouldn't say, and lets not forget the mini breakdowns, I ended up switching veterinarians.  All I have to say is thank goodness for my husband who insisted this at the time.  I am pretty sure I was going borderline crazy by then.  We ended up taking Macy to a vet closer to my home for a second opinion.  My new vet and I immediately connected.  She got me.  She understood my weird love for this dog and was willing to do anything and everything to help me.

It's been 2 years since Macy was diagnosed with valvular degeneration that will eventually lead into heart failure.  Since that time, I have done a complete 360 on her diet.  She went from eating filet mignon to an actual dog food called royal canine for chihuahuas.  Thank God she loves that dog food almost as much as the human food she was used to eating.  She goes to her new vet 1-2 times per year for blood work and check-ups.  Macy also has been to the doggie cardiologist (yes those really do exist) three times in the past two years.  She goes annually for a check-up to get EKG's, chest x-rays, and echocardiograms to ensure that her tiny heart isn't enlarging too fast and going into failure.  At that time she will need to be started on medication.  Keep your fingers crossed, but besides a little cough, so far so good for my little dog!  Oh, she's a princess by the way.

And now, I know what you must be thinking...a dog cardiologist?  echos?  EKGs?  really nicole, really???

And all I have to say about that is this, John Grogan said it best talking about his dog Marley....  

"A person can learn a lot from a dog, even a loopy one like ours. Marley taught me about living each day with unbridled exuberance and joy, about seizing the moment and following your heart. He taught me to appreciate the simple things-a walk in the woods, a fresh snowfall, a nap in a shaft of winter sunlight. And as he grew old and achy, he taught me about optimism in the face of adversity. Mostly, he taught me about friendship and selflessness and, above all else, unwavering loyalty." ~John Grogan

So to answer your question, "yes, really."


  1. I could lie and say this post didn't make me cry but then I would be lying. haha! I don't know if its the fact that I just laid on my bed with Ollie for an hour and the thought of ever losing her made me cry or if its the fact that I had a CPS test this morning and I didn't know digoxin and digitalis were the same thing until the test or the fact that I get really angry at myself when I don't do as well as I thought I should ... but the waterworks have begun! And on that note, I should probably go and take a nap! :)

  2. I have done the SAME thing with my cat. She is 17 now. And 2nd year in med school she was diagnosed with heart failure and started on atenolol! After a year or more and several echo's at her cardiologist's, she had 2 seizures on the BB, so I stopped it. The vet thought I was crazy and prescribed Norvasc, which my cat wouldn't take. Now, she is doing great, her vet in MI says she doesn't hear a murmur and has her on Norvasc topical that you rub in her ear. She is my baby! I have had her since she was 6 months old and will be devastated when she dies....which hopefully will not be for awhile!

    PS I miss you!

  3. You're such a good momma! And yes "I get u"!

  4. We boarded Oscar last weekend and ended up staying a day longer than expected...when I went in to pick him up the tech said, "Oscar was a good boy as always but for some reason he wasn't quite himself this morning and has been antsy to leave today?" I said, "Oh, well he knows his days and I told him I would be back yesterday...he must think there is something terribly wrong with me!" Tyler started dying laughing when I told him the story and asked how many crazy dog people there are in the world like us...glad to know you are one too:) LOVE this post!!