Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Attention deficit disorder

For the past few days, Dempsey has been suffering from attention deficit disorder. We're not talking about the inability to focus on anything for more than 2 seconds -- that's normal in a puppy -- but the crazy disorder he gets when he's not the center of attention 24/7.

The reason for this is the cat. For the last week or so, Bailey has been constipated. Being the organic/natural people we are, we decided to try to help her naturally by giving her canned pumpkin. The high fiber is supposed to get their systems running again, and we'd been told that most cats like it. Notice we said "most." Bailey, of course, does not.

Our next step was to try tricking her, by mixing the pumpkin with her favorite canned food. Bailey took one good sniff of the stuff, and refused it. In fact, she became convinced we were trying to posion her food; she even stopped eating her untainted canned food. Because she hadn't eaten in a day, we thought it might be a good time to let her try some new kibble with higher fiber. We bought her a bag of Innova, an expensive, fancy-schmancy brand, but she refused to eat that, too.

By this point, all our "natural" solutions had failed, so we took her to the vet for an unnatural solution. Literally: six enemas with soapy water, adminstered over two days. As you can imagine, Bailey is not very happy about this. She has taken to dragging her butt along the floor, leaving streaks of watery poo.

This, of course, is very appealing to Dempsey, who can't tell the difference between cat poo and peanut butter and is dying to lick it up. Given what a mess the floor is, I was half tempted to emulate David Sedaris' redneck brother, who cleans up his dog's poop by training his neighbor's dog to eat it. Alas, this trick only works if it's someone else's dog eating the poop, so I was back to following Bailey around with a bottle of Windex and a roll of paper towels. Dempsey was confined to his kennel.

This has all been too much for Dempsey. While he sits in his kennel, he's been watching me clean up Bailey's poo. And give Bailey medicine. And give Bailey laxative. And give Bailey a bath. And pet Bailey. And feed Bailey more canned food.

Dempsey is jealous jealous jealous. When we take him out of his kennel, he dances like an NFL player who just scored a touchdown, and then proceeds to run around like crazy. He tries stealing stuff from the trash can or counters -- anything to get attention. He was pretty bad at class on Monday night, refusing to even look at the keys he had expertly retrieved just the other night at the zoo. When Eileen, the head honcho of Helping Paws, walked around meeting the puppies in class, I was just praying Dempsey wouldn't jump up and try to mount her leg. (Fortunately, he didn't.)

Luckily for Dempsey, he's staying with his brother Hudson for the next few days as we travel. In addition to Hudson, there's Elsie, an adult Labrador Retriever; a huge yard; two kids; and, apparently, every kid on the block. We think he'll have lots of fun, and we hope it will cure his attention deficit disorder.

Bailey in the bathroom. Apparently she couldn't make it to either toilet.

Dempsey, meanwhile, retains his healthy glow.


  1. Hi Dempsey!
    Welcome to DWB! We also live in Minnesota and look forward to following your adventures. Especially since my brother failed service dog training (he didn't start training until he was about a year old and he was too enthusiastic about everything).

    The posts that we've read so far are very entertaining. Would you mind if we feature Bailey in one of our posts later this week?

    Woof ya later,
    Princess Eva

  2. Hey there Dempsey!
    I just found you on DWB and my human has been LOL at your post about Bailey's "delicate condition" and the David Sedaris reference...she remembers reading that passage and laughing until she cried and her stomach hurt...she hasn't been able to look at soft-serve ice cream machines the same ever since ;-)
    Keep up your great work, it sounds like you'll be an amazing service dog some day!
    Come visit me!
    Your new pal,

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