Holidays with Dani: an overdue update

Issy photobomb… I didn’t notice her until I viewed the photo for editing.

Thanksgiving with Dani went even better than I hoped.

We were a little concerned at first. It rained on the way to our daughter’s so there was a possibility Asta and Dani would be inside, with all the people.

It wasn’t a big group… around 9 people, in and out during the day. Among us all but one had either had the ‘Rona (and were therorically immune?) or had a recent negative test.

By the time we arrived at our daughter’s the rain stopped and it turned out to be a very lovely rest of the day.

Camp chairs were set up on her back patio in a social distancing configuration and our dinner of deep-fried turkey and honey baked ham, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and gravy, and apple and pecan pie was enjoyed al fresco. 

Asta and Dani stayed with Mister and me, lying either behind our chairs or between them. Dani didn’t run away and try to hide, and even allowed our daughter’s boyfriend to approach her for some ear rubs without having to bribe her with meaty morsels. 

Dani also had her first visit with our vet since joining the Misfit Toys. The Girls had appointments to get their nails clipped.

I just can’t do it, even with someone helping hold the furkinder. I’m always afraid I’ll cut their nails too short and hurt them. Our vet techs are amazing and never have caught the quick. I was still worried about Dani. She needed to see the vet not just for the nail management, but also for an initial introduction

Until this in-person appointment, the vet and techs only knew what I told them, the concerns we discussed about her. Until this meeting, I think they thought I was exaggerating how extreme Dani’s anxiety was. She removed all doubt while actually being less distressed than she was when she first came to us.

Fortunately Mister was able to be at the appointment so Dani had her emotional support hooman. Her favorite spots remains at his feet when he’s sitting in the living room. He’ll made her a fort sometimes too when she’s feeling especially vulnerable. 

The Doc gave us some anti-anxiety meds to try with her. The supplement is plant-based so I feel it is safe for her. She’s been taking it for about a week now. While there have been no drastic changes in her demeanor, there are subtle improvements that we hope will continue. The doc said it could take a few months for her to acclimate to the medication before we see real changes, but we are encouraged by the small steps forward.

Christmas is next week, and Dani has her own stocking. I’m sure Santa will bring her some fun holiday treats, she’s been such a Good Girl this year.

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I believe all good fiction includes an element of truth, and all good photography includes an element of fantasy. In this journal I hope to give voice to the stories swirling around in my head, and to capture the images I see through my camera’s lens.

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