My Best Friend is Grey-Book Four


Fog Causes Bedlam in Dr's Office- Think He's Feeling Better?- 9/23/02

Dr Long says FOG DOING BETTER!! YAAAAAA!!!!!! 9/22/02

Fog Doing Very Well- 9/24/02 : )

Fog Report- Not Doing Well 9/27/02

Fog Update- maybe not home until Monday- 9/26/02

Home From My Visit With Fog- Looking GOOD- 9/28/02

Fog update 10/3/02 Still not home!!! Any day now...


There is a fruit that Fog can never be....................




Subject: Fog Causes Bedlam in Dr's Office- Think He's Feeling Better?- 9/23/02

Dr. Shapiro called late last night to update Fog's condition. He explained the surgery that he did on Saturday. When he saw that Fog's White Blood Cell count was elevated and that he was having drainage from his wound, he had to open him up to look for infection. He saw signs of infection between his skin and muscle. That made it necessary for him to open him up deeper and look for infection between his muscles and organs, inside the body cavity. That area was clean and free of infection,. He flushed him out with antibiotics. When he closed Fog up again, he used very strong steel stitches. The Dr. said he didn't want to use the dissolving kind because sometimes when they dissolve there is a greater chance of infection, which of course we need to avoid.

Dr. S. took Fog's IV out last night. When he has been examining him, he has had to sedate him first because Fog is too much of a wild man. Dr. S removes him from his crate, sedates him and then looks him over.

The Dr. said that last night when he took him out of his crate, Fog exploded past him unexpectedly! He was making a break for it!! Legs, tail, tongue and ears flapping, Fog knocked Dr. Shapiro right over onto the floor!!! Our heroic vet had to scramble to his feet and corral crazy ole Fog in the office before he smashed up the place and hurt himself again. Instead of worrying that Fog will break his stitches, maybe we should be concerned that he will break Dr. Shapiro? I have a feeling that as much as he clearly loves Fog, he will be relieved to see him come home-

Feeling better and better!

XO Gail & Fog (hey, I'm bustin outta here!)

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Subject: Dr Long says FOG DOING BETTER!! YAAAAAA!!!!!! 9/22/02

All of you continue to be so supportive and it is a great comfort. Hal, your reassurance about the drain put me at ease- I heard the word "septic" and I got pretty upset. Fog continues to get emails, e cards, snail cards, phone messages and Instant Messages. I have lost track of how many-the love and good wishes are overwhelming!! Everyone is so generous with their love and concern! We feel very lucky.

Dr. Long called this morning and said that Fog is doing very well- he is eating and went out for a walk. His temp is normal and he continues on 2 different antibiotics, to give him a "broader spectrum of coverage"., and he has the drain in place. Dr. Long said that Dr. Shapiro will check on him this evening. It is still too early to tell when he will come home. Dr. Long said they will probably do another white cell count on him on Tuesday. His cell count yesterday was 35. Dr. Long was there with her little teeny newborn baby and you could hear the baby noises in the background- it was so cute!! It turns out that she and Dr. Shapiro are married!!

I feel much better today- I was upset all day yesterday because I started to have thoughts like "What if I lose him?" and I couldn't sleep last night. So I am very happy to hear that Fog is doing well and I feel much better today.

Thanks to everyone, and I'll post more news as I have it.

XO Gail & Fog

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Subject: Fog Doing Very Well- 9/24/02 : )

I spoke with Dr. Shapiro today, and he had more good news for me- he said that Fog is still draining fluid, but that it is clear and healthy.

He also removed a drain today- and Fog has 3 left to go- that shook me up a little, but Dr. S said 4 were required.

There is no sign of infection, he is healing nicely. He is eating and being a good boy, and the Dr says he is his normal Wild Man self. He is expecting that Fog will be home by the end of the week. I hope that means Friday and not Saturday, but we will see. Dr. S said that he doesn't want to see Fog back in his office until it is time for another regular checkup, (he said it in a nice way) so I am guessing that he has really been a handful. But WE know that already. Poor Dr Shapiro wasn't prepared!

XO Gail & Fog

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Subject: Fog Report- Not Doing Well 9/27/02

I'm awfully sad right now- I spoke with Dr. Shapiro this afternoon- he says that the fluid from the remaining drain in Fog is still thickening. He has been putting hot packs on him to promote healing, and has changed his antibiotic. He says that Fog has a nasty infection. Dr. Shapiro said that the top of his incision is healing well, but the bottom, near his penis, the tissues are inflamed. He is thinking that he might have to remove these tissues. He wants me to come in tomorrow at 8:30am to see Fog, and we will talk about what steps to take. He will not know if the new antibiotic is having a good effect until he Fog has had 3 doses. I'm scared. Dr. Shapiro isn't going to suggest that I put him down, is he? When he said "talk about what steps to take" I panicked and said, "What do you mean what steps to take?" and Dr. S said, "Well, removing the inflamed tissue." But we had already discussed that, which is why I am afraid. Maybe he wants to discuss the expense with me? I hope that is all. I feel so bad for my boy. Dr. Shapiro said again that he is a wonderful dog and that he is just great and has a great personality. I promise to post as soon as I get back from my visit.

XO Gail & Fog

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Subject: Fog Update- maybe not home until Monday- 9/26/02

I spoke w Dr. Shapiro this afternoon, he says that Fog is doing well- he only has one drain left in, but the serum coming out is thickening, so he is watching him carefully. He said that if he has to keep him over the weekend he wants me to come to visit on Saturday morning. I had been hoping to bring him home Friday or Saturday, but it sounds like his homecoming might be delayed. Dr. Shapiro says the top half of his incision is healing nicely, but the bottom half, he is keeping an eye on. Poor Fog!! Dr. S said that he is a really great dog and it does sound like he gets a kick out of Fog. I asked if he barks all the time in the crate (that's what he does at home) and he said, "yes, but I tell him to stop and he does" : 0 That surprised me, because when Fog barks here at home and I tell him hush he totally ignores me!!!

I miss my big boy, but I am reminding myself that the time for his homecoming is getting closer and not farther away- he should be home soon!!!

XO Gail & Fog

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Subject: Home From My Visit With Fog- Looking GOOD- 9/28/02

I've just returned from visiting Fog-he is as big and wiggly and energetic as ever. Dr. Shapiro brought him into the waiting room for me to see him initially because it is the biggest room in the place! I sat on the floor and Fog  hopped around non stop and licked my face and bit my ears and hopped around some more. He was so happy!!

Then we went into the back and Dr. S and George put him on the exam table and turned him on his side so Dr. S could show me his incision and talk about it. It took 3 people to hold Fog down because he was so strong and excited. He thought that it was a wrestling game! Dr. S showed me the incision, which goes from his navel to his penis. He showed me the round marks where the drains were. He said that because Fog was sitting up a lot, gravity forced the fluid to collect at the base of the incision. There is still quite a bit inside, it looks like he has a potato under his skin on each side of his center line. Dr. S has been hot packing the area and it has reduced to 50% of what it was 48 hours ago. He has no drains in him right now, and his body will gradually absorb the fluid. Fog still has the big ugly stitches, but the site is healing well and Dr. S is satisfied and thinks that he will not have to operate again. He said that Fog's recovery has been delayed by about a week because of the infection. He has changed his antibiotic and it seems to be working well, and he has cultured the infection and is expecting lab work back today . This is what Dr. Shapiro wanted to talk about- he wanted to review with me what treatment Fog had received and why, and give me all the details of what Fog had been thru and what he anticipates for the near future and give me any opportunity to ask questions.

Dr. S let Fog up and let me hold him and cuddle with him, but he was so excited he kept skipping around and biting my ears and pawing me. Dr. S said again that Fog is a REALLY GREAT DOG!

Fog is keeping everyone at the vet's office busy- Fog LOVES George, the very quiet young vet tech who cares for Fog, and the receptionist said that when George is not back in the kennel area working, Fog barks loudly because he wants George come back and to stay with him!!!! Fog also refuses to go potty on the street, and makes George take him to Central Park to go potty- (the park is only 1/2 block away, but boy is Fog manipulative!!) Dr. S told me that. What a stinker!!!

I brought Fog a t shirt with my scent on it, so he will have that to keep him company over the weekend. Fog is eating his regular dog food, no more special easy-to-digest food. That means when he comes home he can sample a little of all of the good treats he has received from his friends!! Dr. S says that he may be able to come home on Tuesday, provided he continues to improve!!! YIPPEE!!

Again, a big Giant Fog-Sized Thank You to everyone for being so supportive and concerned!!

XO Gail & Fog

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Subject: Fog update 10/3/02 Still not home!!! Any day now.......

Fogbo is still not home- I spoke with Dr. S on Monday afternoon- he had to remove some of the inflamed tissue at the base of Fog's incision. He said he thought that he would definitely be home by Wednesday or Thursday, with all of his stitches out, too. I haven't heard from him today, so I called to ask if he would come home today, but Dr. S hasn't called back. I phoned about 3 hours ago, my guess is that Dr. S is overwhelmed with appointments and emergencies. Since it's 12:30 now I doubt that Fog will be home today.

I baby-sat Gus the GWP Monday and Tuesday- his dad had to go out of town. Gus was so much fun and a good distraction. He is a real clown. He has a brown nose with brown fur around it, which makes his nose look huge, and he has that funny stick up fur coat and a very long pink tongue that is always hanging out of his mouth. I took him to the park yesterday morning for 2 `1/2 hours. EVERYONE was asking about Fog!! People were very sympathetic and

all wished him well. Gus chased the ball for the whole time, and finally started to get a little tired after the 2 1/2 hours. He was very well behaved and he slept with me with his shaggy little head on my chest. Jon came to get him last night. Sigh!

I'll let you all know when my boy will be home!! (It is 2 weeks now that he has been in the hospital!)

XO Gail & Fog

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Subject: HOME SWEET HOME FOR FOG!!!!!! 10/4/02

At last!! I went to get my good boy this morning at 11AM. Before I went to the Vet's office, I called Visa to see what my credit limit was. Luckily, it was high enough that I felt very confident that it would cover Fog's vet bills- there's a plus for having good credit!!

When I arrived the receptionist had Fog's meds lined up on her pass-thru window. She told me that George has gotten very attached to Fog, and that she saw them this morning sitting outside the coffeehouse at a table together having coffee at 8:30AM. Isn't that cute??

I had to wait a bit, as Dr. Shapiro was assisting Dr. Z in Surgery and George was bathing a big dog. Dr. S apologized for the delay. I was so excited to bring Fog home!!

After a few minutes, Dr. Shapiro called me into his office, and said, "I just wanted to take this opportunity to tell you that in all my years of practice I have never worked with a dog as great as Fog. He is just a wonderful dog, and he has been a pleasure! We are very sorry to see him go." I was so proud!!! I told Dr. S that everyone says that about him. Dr. S says that he has an extraordinary personality, that was the only way he could describe it. Was I a proud mummers? You bet!!

He and George held Fog while he showed me where he removed the dead tissue, and where there was still fluid at the base of his incision. It will continue to absorb into his body. Dr. S said that Fog could go home for the weekend, have walks on his leash, eat his normal meals, take his antibiotics (he has 2), but no running, wrestling, jumping over fences, jumping on Larry the Doorman, etc. On Monday morning I will bring him back and he will have his stitches taken out. Then he can run and play all he likes.

Before we left the office, I took a picture of Dr.S and George with Fog- they were both proud and shy- it was a nice moment. Dr S. said that Fog really "dodged a bullet this time" so I guess what happened to him was terribly dangerous and he was very lucky. I had that feeling all along, but I couldn't accept that something really bad would happen to him.

Fog and I walked home along Central Park (Dr S. said it was okay) and we got home around noon. It was a beautiful day, but a little hot, so we stayed on the shady side of the street. He drank a lot of water when we got home, and had some lunch. We went out later to the grocery and to the bank, both short little walks, only 4 blocks total. I gave him a new hard rubber toy that he chewed on, and for a before dinner appetizer he enjoyed licking all the cheese filling out of a Get Well chew bone from one of his friends. He has had his dinner and nighttime medicine, and his after dinner walk. I took the cushions off the back of the sofa so it is roomier, and he is resting there now, in his E collar.

So all seems right in our own little corner of the world.

XO Gail & Fog

PS-We expect major celebration to be Tuesday morning in the Park- running, chasing, fence jumping, retrieving., cookies, etc.

PS ps- For everyone who is guessing at the actual cost of this adventure, I will stay mum for a few days so that you can all continue the fun- the actual amount will be revealed in Tues PM WeimChat and posted on the Weim Board that night after chat.

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There is a fruit that Fog can never be....................

Finally, Fog got his stitches out this morning. We walked up to Dr. Shapiro's office, but before we got there, he insisted on sniffing around on Columbus Plaza, which is covered in white grainy sand, so Fog got the edge of his E collar covered in white granules, which made him look like a margarita.

At the office, Fog hopped onto the exam table (he loves to show off) and Dr. Shapiro and George flipped him on his side to have his stitches out. Dr. S said that they were holding well. He used a special tool to remove the staples that he had in- He had 27 stitches and staples all down his belly. Dr. S said to wipe the area with hydrogen peroxide twice a day. Fog has been VERY thirsty from his antibiotics, he finished the last of them tonight.

Dr. S said to exercise him on his leash only for the next week, no jumping, wrestling, etc. After that he can go wild. The doctor said again what a great dog Fog is!! I am so proud of my good boy!

Okay, have you figured out yet what fruit Fog can never be??? Scroll down!









An ORANGE because after this surgery, his navel is GONE!!! Boo hoo!! I loved that little crater!!!

XO Gail & Fog

PS- Jen, can you write a story about Fog's mishap and how he loses his navel?

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Subject: YAAAAA!!!! FOG COMES HOME THURS 10/3/02 11AM

Dr. Long called today at 5:30- she said that Fog can come home tomorrow. I'm going to get him at 11 AM. Dr. Shapiro will be leaving his stitches in and Fog will get an E collar. I will have to bring him back on Monday to have the stitches removed, but at least I get to bring him home. Time to make some Frosty Paws!! Yippee!!! Doing the Happy Dance here!!

XO Gail & Fog



Well here are the results of Fog's final vet bill..........drum roll please!!

Gipsyjet is the winner, guessing $4000. The actual amount was


I must offer an explanation, however. If Dr. Shapiro had charged me what he was entitled to, the cost would have been $9000-$10,000, in which case Nancy's guess of $10,000 would have been the closest!

All in all, Dr. Shapiro did not charge for the following:

9/18/02 surgery $900.

9/21/02 surgery $900.

9/30/02 removal of necrotic tissue (local) ?

15 days veterinary care @ $55 per day $825.

retail price of antibiotics (he only charge me his cost) ?

I'm still overwhelmed that he did all of this work for FREE!!

Everybody say a big thank you prayer for Dr. Shapiro!!

XO Gail & Fog

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Subject: Gail and Fog report on Dog Country Fair in Central Park-LLOONNGG!!

Yesterday we attended the First Ever Dog Country Fair in Central Park. It was organized by the Central Park Conservancy (a bunch of Ladies Who Lunch and raise money for the Park) and PAWS, a group of Central Park Dog owners. It was held in the Park on the basketball courts near the Great Lawn and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The weather was cool and a little humid and a bit overcast, but still quite good. The entrance to the area had a huge arch made of red, orange and yellow helium balloons, so you couldn't miss where the fun was being held. Fog wore his patchwork scarf sent to him by LeeAnn, Beau and Sam. My friends Carol and Aline came along, and they had no dog, so I borrowed Gus the GWP (his dad had to work) so that they would have a "date" too. It was a 30 block walk from my house one way.

We had such fun at the activities, demos music and games. There was a live band, fronted by a Veterinarian, and it included a pet lawyer, a vet tech, a tropical fish specialist and I think a lab tech. They were called "Pet Rox Benefit Band"

The Fair was organized so well. The band would play during the demos, and when they took a brake, the MC, who was a professional trainer, would take over and teach us tricks or lead us in a game. SADLY we arrived to late for the My Dog Will Eat Anything Contest. Each dog's owner was presented with a plate of food samples, varying in difficultly. The leader instructed which to offer first. when you dog refused a food, he was OUT. The foods were: carrot, apple, cherry tomato, olive, and several others (there were 10 total) and finally a hot pepper. Fog would have won that easily.

There were information booths and children's books, dog toys and treats for sale. Everything was donated, with all proceeds going to the Doggy Drinking Fountain Fund. There were $5 raffle tickets for sale, and zillions of great prizes in the raffle- an Oil painting of your dog, Six week group training classes, a weekend stay at a Vermont Bed and Breakfast, Day of Beauty at a Doggy Salon, Doggy gift baskets, 2 tickets to the Daily Show starring John Stewart, a weekend stay at the Canine Country Ranch for your dog, and on and on.

We also participated in a group lesson where our dogs learned a trick-Wipe Your Nose. Everyone got a piece of masking tape and a treat. You put the tape on your dogs nose, between his eye, and when he uses his foot to swat at it, you tell him "Wipe your nose!" and reward him..That was cute. We also learned to jump thru a hula hoop. Hold the hoop vertically but touching the ground. Lure your dog thru the hoop while saying "Jump!" Reward him when he goes thru the hoop. The next time around , raise the hoop a little bit, but no higher than his elbows (to avoid injury).

There was also an "Ask Dr. Andy" table, where you could get an answer to a general health or behavioral question. Dr. Andy was there and a pet behaviorist.

My favorite event was "Dress Your Dog." There were 10 hula hoops in a row on the ground. In the center of the court, there was a line of clothes in a pile- shorts, tank tops, hats and socks or mittens. Opposite was another line of hula hoops. You had to start standing in a hula hoop, with your dog. When the signal is given, run to the clothes and dress your dog in a top, shorts, hat and socks or mittens. Then run to the hula hoop opposite you. Undress your dog, and put his outfit on yourself. Run back to the starting line. This is much harder than it sounds, and a very hilarious spectator sport!!. There were no winners or losers in the games, everyone that participated got a toy.

There was also an obedience demo, a service dog demo, and an agility dog demo, which was particularly funny because the demo dog was not doing very well at all. Fog was especially interested in that, because he wanted the ball that the owner was offering the demo dog as a reward, so Fog stood on his back legs with his front feet on the fence watching and barking. I thought that might have something to do with the poor dog's poor performance, so I took him away.

We didn't win any luxury raffle prizes, but we certainly had fun and a full day of exercise and collected some good memories- already we can't wait for next year's event!

Maybe some Weim friends will come for a visit and attend with us!

XO Gail & Fog

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