Kira: Happy 5th Birthday!

Today (July 5) is Kira’s 5th Birthday!  Unfortunately, I have to work today.  So, I won’t be doing anything special for her.  Kira has turned into a wonderful dog as she has gotten older.  We have had our share of problems:

  • The day we got her, we knew she was different.  She didn’t want to be pet and didn’t socialize with the other puppies.  She never exhibited any affection to any animal or human at all.  She spent most of the time hiding from me even when I was off for a year from work taking care of her.
  • Bones almost kills her at 8 weeks by chomping her head leaving her head permanently misshapen for her life and her left eye pointing a little off
  • Constant urinary tract infections causing house training to be difficult.  These lasted till she was about 1 year old.  Lots of meds and we kept it under control (If you are at the house and need a ladle for soup, ask first before selecting one.  I used a particular one to catch her urine.  Of course it is still in the utensil drawer!!!)
  • Allergies to freshly cut grass causing histamine blisters on her legs and between her toes.  These eventually gave way to black sores in her ears.  Now she is not allowed outside in the cut grass.
  • Lack of maturity making it not possible for her to have puppies or at least to get pregnant.  So, she got spayed. The original intention was to have her deliver one set of pure bred puppies so that one puppy could be kept to replace Bones when he dies and up to 8 others had been flagged for friends and family.
  • Yearly urinary tract infections that required constant treatment
  • At 3 years of age, she had an allergy in her ear and flipped her head under the bed rupturing a vessel in her ear and causing her ear to balloon up.  Treatment was to cut the inside of the hear and sew the wound open so that the two parts of her ear could heal together slowly.  We took the stitches out from the outside in to let more grow together.  After getting all of the stitches out, her ear is essentially a big thick scar.  The other option would have been amputation of the ear.  Imagine a Labrador Retriever without an ear!
  • She use to sleep on the bed till her allergies caused incontinence in the night.  At least 5 floods of the bed occurred before she voluntarily stopped sleeping on the bed.  She is a sensitive dog.
  • The summer that she turned 4, she lost her coat in the shedding season and nothing grew back.  My black lab was bald!  We tried lots of treatments and tests and nothing worked.  But, when winter came, she grew another coat that was soft and lush.  Her previous coat had always been very wirey and long making her less than fun to pet.  Her new coat is so soft and nice to pet.  Of course she hates being pet.
  • At 4 years of age she started getting infections in her anal glands.  The smell was horrible and we had to get them expelled once a month.  We finally opted for surgery to remove the anal glands and now the little girl has no infections at all.

Now my little girl is 5.  She stays with me and protects me.  She still doesn’t like being pet, still hides from people and other animals, and could care less about anything around her unless it is willing to throw a ball for her.  But, she stays with me … as long as I don’t pet her.  She knows a number of tricks and obeys me no matter what.  She very gently takes food from my hand, and knows she is the queen of the house as she always gets anything she wants from me.  When in trouble, she runs to me, and when at the vet, she sits on me hugging me with her front paws around my neck.

It took a lot to get over the loss of Grendel and I still cry when I think about Grendel, but Kira has managed to be a very special dog to me and I love her very much.

Happy Birthday Kira!


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