Dogged Resolve

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This column is rated PG-13 (for disgusting content).

It was nearing midnight and I could not believe this was really happening. Instead of being asleep, we four Kimbroughs were wide awake, thanks to two scrawny puppies that now belong to my daughters since I gave in at a weak moment and said yes to Christmas dogs. (But that’s another story.)

This story began when I wandered into the family room and noticed Lala (miniature Schnauzer/Shih Tzu) and Faye (Shih Tzu) finishing off a plate of fried onion strings. I yelled to remind the family that someone had left a plate where it should not have been, and that the puppies had done what puppies do. My displeasure expressed, I headed for bed.

Those plans were interrupted when my oldest daughter – armed only with a cell phone and its Internet capability – quickly did some research and pronounced that onions could be fatal to her Faye. Having never heard such about onions and dogs, I still intended to go to bed. But with a call to a veterinarian by my more caring wife, thoughts of slumber ended as I saw the fearful eyes of my daughters.

So here we were: Two grown adults in the living room, trying to use a syringe to get hydrogen peroxide into the tummies of two puppies so they would (no good way to say this) throw up. I practically gag at the sight of vomit under any circumstance, regardless of the source, and here I was actually trying to make it happen! I mean, we were practically cheerleading: Go, Lala, go, V-O-M-I-T, go! And she did, and we got excited. That onion stuff won’t get in her bloodstream now, we said, turning our attention to Faye.

But she was not so easy. That little pug-nosed Shih Tzu fended us off for an hour, nine frenzied pounds making it virtually impossible to squirt peroxide down her little mouth. Our success rate was poor and desperation set in. Finally, the youngest of the Kimbroughs – who actually aspires to be a veterinarian – stepped in, syringe in hand, and apparently saved the day. A few moments later, more whoops erupted as Faye succumbed and ‘gave it up.’

Now that you are disgustedly disturbed by this whole story, maybe we can draw at least one important lesson from it. I’ve already applied some lessons within our household, beginning with plates being left in wrong places. But I think we can draw one connection a bit more important, one that deals not with the health of our animals, but our own health, especially that of our seniors. Recall how quickly my daughter retrieved information about the onions and her dog? Yet even armed with that information, it took a call to a friendly veterinarian for us to fully understand and know what to do. Nothing replaces a simple, old-fashioned chat.

This time of year, many of our senior citizens are facing information overload about their health coverage. It’s good they receive this information, but sometimes they probably would just like to sit down and talk with someone about it. Fortunately, you can find TRH Health Plans at any of your friendly Farm Bureau offices, and someone there can talk with you about Medicare plans and your options. We would love to do that, so come see us, or check us out on the Internet at www.trh.com, or call us at (877) 874-8323.

And we promise, we’ll keep the stories cleaner than the one above and make certain to leave the plates in the kitchen.

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