We received a card this week through the mail from the Red Barn Veterinarian Clinic. The time had come for Caillou's annual checkup. He is a collie that came to live with us seven years ago. He is …
We received a card this week through the mail from the Red Barn Veterinarian Clinic. The time had come for Caillou's annual checkup. He is a collie that came to live with us seven years ago.
He is not a fan of the vet – or checkups. It's not the checkup so much but the experience of riding in the truck. He hates it. He threw up in my lap once. After each trip to the vet, he treats me as if I have mange. He’s a finicky critter.
When it was time to head out, I pulled his leash from the coatrack by the door. He’s clever enough to know that the leash is not good news for him. Things rarely turn out well for him when I take it off the rack. Once in the truck, he laid his head in my laps and panted...and drooled. I’ve learned to keep a towel behind my seat to reduce cleanup time.
When we arrived for our appointment, I put him on a leash, but that was not necessary. He minds better than most children.
When I took him inside the clinic, there was a beautiful English bulldog waiting with his mama at the counter. He was woozy. I’m guessing his interest in girl dogs will plummet soon, and he won’t know why. Caillou is a friendly dog and wants to be loved by all. The bulldog didn’t seem to share the Kumbaya spirit, so the leash is a good idea.
When the vet tech called us back, Caillou knew where to go. He stepped into the exam room and sat next to the table. When it was time to get his weight, I stood, and Caillou walked by my side. I pointed to the scales, and he stepped up on them and stood. The vet tech said, "We need to see more collies in here."
He weighed 84 pounds which is not as much as I thought, but then he's all hair. He stood like a trooper as they checked his ears, his teeth, and everything else. The vet petted Caillou and gave him a few shots. She also gave me a card for a pet groomer that specializes in summer cuts for collies.
When we walked outside, I opened the truck door, snapped the leash off his collar, and pointed to the truck. He bounded onto the front seat and looked at me as if to say, "Let's go home, Pop. I'm over this place.
On the way home, I pulled into Mike’s Grocery at the forks of the river and picked up a giant Slim Jim. During the rest of the drive, I'd bite off a bit of Slim Jim and give it to my riding companion. I think I was forgiven – at least until next week when I take him to the groomers for his summer cut. He won’t be happy, but the haircut will make his life much better as the heat moves in.
Rick Watson is a columnist and author. His latest book, "Life Goes On," is available on Amazon.com. You can contact him via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.