Friday, November 20, 2009

My Superhero Service Dog

One of the things I’m so grateful for is my brilliant and beautiful service dog, Stone. He gets to go everywhere I go, which often adds a whole new dimension to any activity.

Tuesday I had my annual colonoscopy and heck, let’s face it, there are few things that are as fun as spending a day living on Gatorade and cleansing out your colon followed by a day of being drugged while some guy sticks a large tube with a camera on the end up your “nether regions” as our grandparents might have said. :) But, at least I get to bring along my dog, which is a privilege few people can enjoy.

Not only is he great at distracting me from the stress at hand, my nurse is always extra attentive. In fact, every nurse on the floor is attentive, stopping by to see if I need anything and “oh while I’m here could you tell me about your dog.” While I know there is a nursing shortage, I’d never know it by the care I get whenever I’m in a hospital. Thanks Stone.

Just when I think Stone couldn’t amaze me more than he already has, on Tuesday at Christ Hospital, he amazed me yet again. While I was in the recovery room, the nurses brought a woman in to the bed next to mine. Our beds were separated by only a curtain. When her breathing became labored. Stone sat up, looked at me, then looked toward the woman’s bed. Next, he stood up and stuck his snoot under the curtain and then looked back at me, clearly distressed. Next, he looked at the nurses and was motioning his head toward the woman’s bed. He looked back and forth from the nurses to the woman until finally one of the nurses said “Look the dog is trying to tell us there’s something wrong.”

Now here’s the part that was kind of funny and kind of scary. Once the nurses figured out that yes, the woman’s breathing was labored, they tried to arouse her and couldn’t. By now, all of the nurses on the floor were there, but what they were talking about was how beautiful Stone was and how amazing it was that he’d alerted them, as opposed to talking about what to do about the unarrousable woman who’s breathing was labored.

I wonder if Lassie had these problems when Timmy fell down the well.

During my last colonoscopy, Stone provided some great comic relief. He was laying on the floor next to my bed in the recovery room. Apparently his tail was sticking under the curtain. A doctor came by to talk with the patient in the next bed and the patient interrupted him saying “dog’s tail”. The doctor, who clearly thought his patient was confused said “You’ve still got a lot of anesthesia in you, but we’re in the hospital and your procedure’s over.” Again the patient said “dog’s tail”. The Doctor said “I know you’re a vet, but you’re not at work today, you’re in the hospital.” This exchange went on for several moments until finally the doctor called over the nurse and said “he’s still really out of it. Call me when he’s more coherent.” With that, the doctor turned to leave, tripped over Stone’s tail and yelled “SHIT – there IS a dog’s tail.”

So, today I’m grateful that everywhere I go so goes my dog’s tail.


  1. Thanks, Tina! Reading that, made Nes a bit closer.

  2. You are so lucky you get to take Stone everywhere with you! He is such a sweetie. : ) (posted by Joan Fleming)

  3. This post is hilarious! Thanks for writing about your awesome dog.