Poor Minnie

Another hot day! Will it never end? Sure, it was only 31C, but it feels cooler in Bali, I reckon. The forecast gives no end in sight. Over 30C for the next week. I’m running the aircon much more than I used to, and since power charges have risen so much, I shudder to think what it’s costing.

I took Minnie to the vet this afternoon. I must admit it’s been a while since she’s been there. She doesn’t mind going – it’s all excitement and lots of people to pant at. She’s a noisy dog! She pants noisily with excitement. There’s nothing wrong with her sight or hearing. Every movement, every sound makes her prick her ears up and look intently at the source.

Anyway, she’s 41Kg. Oh dear. I knew she’d put on weight, haven’t we all, but that’s a bit too much for a dog. The vet checked her over and she’s got a strong heart murmur, meaning a valve is not closing cleanly. It will be improved if she loses weight. Crumbs, it’s a worldwide epidemic, isn’t it? Humans are the same, including me. We’re all getting too fat. This is how the world ends, not with a bang, but with a BLOOP.

The local vet can’t do rabies vaccinations – I have to go to an “export vet”. Where? Dunno. Ask Google, or phone AQIS. Since I’m driving one of their old cars, they might be gald to see me.

The vet says Minnie has an adenoma on her bottom that needs to be removed (it’s already been done once and grew back! Can’t I get a refund?) and needs the warts on her head and neck removed, so I have to take her back in two weeks. But mainly, they finally, after 12 years, forced me into buying the dry dog food that almost rhymes with euthanasia. He insists that she has to lose at least 10Kg in the next month, or she may not get through the vet inspection in Bali. She also has a lot of retained fluid, just like me, and has to go onto a diueretic, just like me.

I’ve resisted this dry dog food tooth and nail for as long as I’ve had dogs. This dog food is imported from the USA and is labelled “Processed in USA”. That means the ingredients come from Mexico, I guarantee. But a 12Kg bag costs $117 !!!! That’s as expensive as human food such as good quality chicken. And why does it have to be imported from the USA? I can’t believe no Australian food is good enough. This is a vets’ racket! They all do it. I can’t remember a vet visit where I haven’t been heavily pressured to buy this imported fool’s gold.

But this time it all happened too fast and before I knew it, for a 20 minute consultation, with a vaccination and two lots of tablets to give her, plus a 12Kg bag of “Euthanasia” I had to pay $357 !!! No wonder the vet was telling me that he went through a divorce with his former wife where she got a share of a $10 million settlement.

So we came home at about 6pm and Minnie was too tired to do anything but flop. She looked at me to give her the meaty bone I usually give her, but I had to be cruel and tell her to “wait”. Then I doled out 4 cups of the Gold Nugget dog food. She wouldn’t even sniff it. No thank you, she says. I waited a while and pointed her at it again and she ate a little bit, but wasn’t interested in more than a couple of nibbles.

Well, I guess that proves the point. If she’s not hungry enough to even attempt it, then it won’t hurt her to go without. She’ll eat it if she’s hungry enough. This is the way to weight loss.

15 mins later: she came in and looked longingly at me, but I shooed her outside. She’s eaten most of the bowl, so that’s good. Sorry, Minnie! I’m being cruel to be kind. Someone needs to do that for me – put a padlock on the fridge and keep the key hidden.

I’m nearly finished the job of compressing all my music CDs and DVDs into albums or onto hard drives. I reckon there are more than 1200 CDs and about 250 DVDs. Now I’m copying all my CD-RWs of photos to hard drive, and filing all the manufacturer software CDs and DVDs that make a computer work. I’m almost finished! All my cabinet shelves are empty and I can take the cabinets to the op shops. Now for the books. What a job this is, but it’s a cleansing as well, so it’s all good in the end. Like an enema…

Later: Well, how about that? When I searched on “export vet”, it produced a list of vets in WA who are qualified to deal with animal exports. In the list is VetWest at Carine Glades. That’s only 5 minutes away and where I took Minnie when I first got her in 1998! Full circle. Ain’t that amazing?

I can even remember the day. Minnie was just a puppy – you know, the kind of beautiful Labrador pup featured in the toilet paper ads. She really was gorgeous at that age, only 4 months old. I bought her from the pet shop at Warwick Grove shops — $500 – that was a lot then , and still is.

I was so excited that I took her to work at Channel 7 one day – I can’t remember why, but I cradled her in my arms and took her to all the offices to show the ladies. Everyone went, “Ooooooh!” No-one can resist a beautiful Labrador puppy.

Then I can remember taking her to this same Carine Glades vet. She was in the back seat of my car and was a bit annoyed. She barked LOUDLY. Why am I being confined like this??? I want to get out and run around!!!

I had my Border Collie, Boopsie then, and I bought Minnie because Boopsie was too lonely. She was only about 18 months old, and she used to run away and hide under the lounge when I went to work. She didn’t want to be left alone. It breaks my heart even now when I think about it. I used to call her Little Dog, because she was small enough to fit under the kitchen cupboards.

I can remember the day I brought Minnie home for her. Boopsie was nearly two years old, so, very senior, and I had Minnie in my arms. I slowly lowered her down, worried about how Boopsie would react. She sniffed the newcomer for a few seconds and seemed OK, so I put Minnie down on the floor. Immediately, Boopsie began to play with her and they hit it off. Minnie played too, so it was fantastic. Minnie was really immature at that stage, only 4 months old, so Boopsie was her mentor, as it is in dog world.

Minnie’s name was always Minty, by the way, because she was white, lozenge shaped and I needed her. For my overseas readers, there’s always been an Australian advertisement that goes, “It’s moments like this you need Minties.” Well, I needed this white, sweet dog, so she became Minty. But that got shortened to Minnie.

Boopsie was always top dog. No way would she allow Minnie to have any authority (how about the human parallels?) and it even resulted in serious dog fights at times. Minnie still has a scar on her nose from a fight. But if Boopsie got on her nerves too much, Minnie used to growl so heavily that it reminded me of The Hounds of the Baskervilles. She let Boopsie know in the strongest terms that she wasn’t going to be bullied. Boopsie still tried it on, but she knew the limit.

My eyes are filled with tears as I write this. I’ve been advised by two people I thought were friends that I should have Minnie killed if I’m going to Bali. Yes, KILLED. They say “put down”, but they mean injected with a drug to make her die. Seriously.

Some people hate dogs, and some people have told me they hate my dogs in particular. All I can say is, there is something wrong with you. You know who you are. Anyone who could kick a dog… how could you??? DOG = GOD in my opinion. Chien au Dieu.

Chien au Dieu. You don’t understand.