Who needs kids when you have dogs…

…to suck all your money away?

So we have this dog, who we love, named Pepper. Pepper was Chief’s dad’s dog who got left with us when they moved away. Being the horrible human being that he is, when we asked him if he was coming to get her he said “No, take her to the pound if you don’t want her”.

Umm no. Librarian doesn’t roll that way.

The poor thing had been completely neglected. He would take her for shots, but he never treated her for fleas. He never paid attention to her. He never let her in the house. It was a horrible existance for her I’m certain.

Then when she got left with us we started training her to be in the house with us at night, to be around the cats, to get along with my dog, etc. etc. We wanted to assimilate her into our life. And this wasn’t always easy, but it wasn’t fair to her to treat her any other way.

For a while, Chief’s dad would begrudgingly pay her medical expenses. And then this year after we bought the house from them he stopped paying. It’s like he figured that we bought the dog when we bought the house. Here’s the thing, if it were just shots and flea treatment, I wouldn’t even worry about it. He’s a sad excuse for a man. I shouldn’t expect better. But Pepper can’t seem to stay healthy. In the past year she’s had to have her shots, has had an eye infection, has had an ulcerated rash on her tummy, has had to have her teeth cleaned, and yesterday I had to take her to the vet for a stomach bug. While we were there yesterday, she got excited about something and yanked on her leash so hard that she choked herself and almost pulled me over. She started coughing which is normal in that sort of situation, but it usually passes in a few minutes.


She hacked all. day. long.  She didn’t stop until she went to sleep unless you were petting her. And it wasn’t even really a cough-it was a honking noise. Like a goose. So I called the vet this morning and they were all “maybe it’s kennel cough!” and I was all “no. that’s dumb. She’s injured her trachea, maybe collapsed it”. And they were all “No! It’s kennel cough!” At this point, I’m slamming my head into a wall from frustration and feeling sick about her being sick again. So she has to go to the vet again tomorrow for observation/treatment of whatever she’s done to herself.

Here’s my point: in the last year Pepper’s medical expenses alone have cost somewhere close to $1000. She is so expensive that I’m having to neglect things like vaccinations for my cats because they are indoor so Pepper’s maladies have taken precedence. And I wouldn’t have a problem with this if I had chosen to take on this expense. And I guess in a way I did by refusing to throw her to the wolves when EFIL (Evil Father-In-Law) told me to, but it didn’t stop me from crying last night because I was home alone, Chief was working late, and I couldn’t get the poor dog to stop coughing. I just felt so overwhelmed by the situation, including the cost. And I know it’s horrible to even think about that when she’s feeling bad, but I make $20,000 a year-it’s not  a lot. And I also kept thinking what would we do if we had children to take care of and these expenses kept popping up? In December-the most expensive month of the year.

So that was a low point this week for me. I am getting caught up on my sleep, and Chief let me cry and curse his father’s name last night while holding me in bed. I’m sure he’s ready for me to stop swinging around like a tilt-o-whirl with my moods-I’m sure we all are. On the positive front, my boss is happier now that her semester is done AND Chief’s parent’s ARE NOT coming to town for Christmas. Hallelujah, praise sweet baby Jesus.


5 thoughts on “Who needs kids when you have dogs…

  1. I hear you on how expensive dogs can be…J and I cringe when we realize how much we’ve spent on our two! and why is it something always happens in December when you need the extra money?

  2. Poor pepper and poor you! I typed out a massive comment last but my phone died before I hit send. I still can’t believe the nasty audacity of yr Fil. I must admit vet bills are one of the main reasons I have against having a dog. Sorry she’s such a burden but you’re a brilliant person!

    • And I feel bad talking about her this way, because she is so sweet and we love her, and if I had to choose between her living with him and me not paying a dime and her living with me and me going broke over it, I’d take the second option every day of the week. It’s just difficult sometimes-when it rains it pours!

      And I think you’re brilliant too 🙂

  3. Aww, poor pup. I feel for you though, it is one thing to be paying vets fees for a pet you decided to have, but to get saddled with costs for one you took in on the goodness of your heart. I hope Pepper gets better soon (and stops costing you money!)

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