Waltzing Matilda and Her Woes

This is Waltzing Matilda (on the right), an eleven-year-old Lab/Dobi mix. Mattie, as we lovingly call her, is both dog and anti-dog. While she transforms herself into a clingy ball of unbridled love each time she sees us come home, she is also the embodiment of the term "bitch", and will tear into any dog that bothers her, threatens her food or source of affection, or draws too near.

Mattie has had her share of lumps in life. Jeff and I rescued her as a six-week old puppy - our neighbor threw her out in the backyard to fend for herself. She shared that cold, Colorado backyard with an adult dog of no relation to her, and not only had no food (the two dogs had to share one bowl) but had no shelter or water source. And so, on my birthday over 11 years ago, Mattie became the new addition to the family. She shared houseroom with Samantha Jane (the World's Most Gentle Chow, who passed a away a few years ago) and Gennaker, the reincartion of J. Robert Oppenheimer (the Shepherd mix with an acute understanding of physics.)

Mattie prefers to sleep in the bathtub, behind furniture or the toilet, or apart from other dogs. She growls. She snarls. She is a true bitch. On the other hand, she will shower people with "kisses", throw herself onto her back and writhe until you pet her belly, and patrol the backyard like some Special Forces she-Commando. She is well trained.

When Jeff and I were first married, I worked as a vet tech in a small animal hospital. Lucky thing - as Mattie was prone to infections due to poor nutrition her first few weeks of life. She battled a staph infection that threatened her eyes, sans complaint. When she lacerated her foreleg in a dog fight, she allow me to suture the wound with just a local anesthetic (most veterinarians will completely anesthetize an animal as they don't sit patiently for such work.) Her early days of puppy injuries and infections eventually gave way to year after year of no illness... or aging, which lead us to believe she had sold her doggy soul to the devil in return for immortality. (This contract became null and void once she left the state of Colorado, I fear, for she is getting more gray by the day!)

So, today, I woke up (feeling like shit myself) and observed that Mattie was paying a lot of attention to her hind end. I asked Jeff (who was also feeling like shit) if she had been doing that all morning, but he didn't think she had. So, after much growling and fussing (on my part - I was achy today), I managed to wrestle Mattie to the carpet and get a look at her doggy butt. Yup, just as I suspected - anal gland troubles.

If you don't have dogs, you have no idea what an anal gland (or anal sac) is. I could go into great detail about what they are and why they are needed, but I'm feeling too sore today to mess with it. Just Google it. Or go here:
The Anal Sacs Page.

Anyway, we called up our vet and off we went. Mattie is used to vets, having spent so mc uh time at work with me during her early years, and about the most exciting thing about visiting one is getting to growl and bark at people as they come in. Mattie quickly found wood paneling approximating her own fur color, and spent the next twenty minutes in camouflage mode (she does this in the dining room also, as the floorboards are almost her own hue.) She really is well-behaved in public, and despite her ass being on fire, she was content to compose herself as a lady should.

No lady, no matter how well trained, will behave nicely when their ass is squeezed, however. And so, I enjoyed squatting next to her while restraining her body and head as the nice Vet performed his duty. The abscessed side was cleaned and medicated, and for good measure he attacked the other side. Poor Mattie - how embarrassing for such a noble bitch. After he was through, she darted about, whining and wiggling with joy that the horror was over. She didn't protest too much over the injection of antibiotic, either.

That was my lovely day.

0 responded with...: