How’s that old saying go? It never rains…

I’d be the first to say that raising dogs and raising children are two different activities. Sure, dogs learn both good and bad habits from each other, and they have emotional needs and the maturity of a three-year-old. They argue and get jealous, make up and play, and work together on arts and crafts (usually using my lawn) in ways similar to children. But they’ll never reach the same level of complexity or depth of understanding that children will. And as heartbreaking as a sick dog can be, a sick child is infinitely worse.

On the other hand…

Last Friday, Kaylee caught a stomach bug. Both dogs are both housetrained and pee-pad-trained, so generally there’s little cleanup to do. But Kaylee’s the poo-first-ask-questions-later type when she gets sick. Wherever she is at the time, that’s where she goes.

I wasn’t particularly worried during the first few bouts of vomiting and diarrhea, but when the back end began to produce liquid that was more red than brown, I called the vet. (It was actually quite a bit more panicked than that, especially since I can’t drive anywhere due to the medication I’m still on, and I’m still in some pain and a lot of exhaustion, but I’m too tired right now to recreate AAH AAH SHE’S GONNA DIE in its original form.)

An x-ray revealed that she hadn’t eaten anything dogs shouldn’t eat and our awesome vet suspected Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis (HGE) which sounds a lot more severe in this wikipedia article than it did when the vet explained it. In short, occasionally when small dogs get a stomach bug, their guts get so inflamed they bleed. It can be deadly without treatment (seeing as small dogs don’t have a whole lot of anything in them to begin with) but Kaylee tends to bounce back easily.

And indeed, on Saturday you wouldn’t have known there had been anything wrong on Friday, except that her poo still stunk to high heaven. Which is why when we woke up to a floor covered in vomit and bloody diarrhea on Sunday morning, we were a bit surprised. Still, she acted pretty normal and things didn’t reoccur until 2:00, when she got so sick we immediately wrapped her in a towel, loaded her into the car, and took her down to the emergency vet.

The emergency vet reiterated what our vet had told us Friday – this wasn’t unusual and it wasn’t a death sentence. In fact, despite the fact that Kaylee did a fine job of decorating their examining room when they were doing vitals, they still said she had a relatively mild case. On the other hand, by this point the poor thing was thoroughly dehydrated, wouldn’t eat or drink, and was clearly just miserable. It took no coaxing whatsoever for us to follow the vet’s suggestion that we leave her there overnight for IV fluids, antibiotics, and general looking-after, since they were much more well-equipped to handle any further emergencies that might come up.

The fact that February managed to not only hospitalize me but also hospitalize my dog did not escape notice and quite frankly I could do without ever having another month like 02/2011 again.

Kaylee came home Monday evening looking and feeling 100% better and, except for a bit of tiredness, you’d once again never know anything was wrong.

Which brings us to the point where I can, if not compare my life to parents of humans, at least sympathize… because this morning Chance started with the diarrhea and this afternoon he was vomiting. The good news is we know exactly what antibiotics to put him on and he’s now on them. The bad news is that my little boy feels like crap, there’s a small but real chance he’ll get just as sick as she did, and my carpet cleaner is going to go on strike for cruel and unusual working conditions.

My little kid is curled up in my lap right now – the only place he wants to be unless he’s in the act of being sick. I had to coax him into taking his antibiotic – neither chicken nor peanut butter were powerful enough to convince him to eat. I can hear his belly squeaking and gurgling in protest, although exactly what it could be protesting at this point I don’t know because there’s not a whole lot left in there to object to.

His sister is out like a light in the beanbag chair. She felt good enough to wake me up from a nap earlier by licking my eyelids (that was a joy), but she still wears down pretty fast.

And I know that there are a number of you out there with sick human kids right now – or worse, sick human kids passing the same virus/infection/whatever back and forth to each other.

And all I can say, feeling as overwhelmed and exhausted as I do right now, is that you parents are amazing. Good job.

So. Freaking. Hot.

When most folks get sick, their temperature goes up. When I catch something effective (more than allergies or a light cold) my temperature goes down.

So when I do run an honest-to-God fever I usually feel cold, and get the chills. On the other hand on nights like tonight, it is so freaking hot I’m going to melt. At least, that’s what my skin tells me. The thermometer says I’m 96 degrees. Somebody’s lying, that’s for sure, because this house is never hot.

Going to try to sleep this one off, assuming I can sleep. It’s like August in here.

Thank goodness for a long weekend.

Work was, well, long. Very very long. But I managed to get a few last-minute items handled before coming home.

I came home to a sick husband, who’s caught some kind of cold/respiratory thing. Exhausted and achy myself I’m not sure I really did a very good job of taking care of him today. For that matter, I didn’t do much for myself, either.

The forum upgrade’s required a few small tweaks, plus WordPress came out with a security update that I needed to install, but everything’s been successful so far. A few quick notes I forgot to mention before:

  • When you register and post a comment, it sits in the moderation queue until I approve it. After that, so long as you don’t do anything to piss off the spam filter, your comments display immediately.
  • I’ll probably eventually (maybe even shortly) start putting a “babble” thread up every day or two so folks can babble to each other even if I’m not actively posting.
  • See the RSS and Comments RSS links in the left nav bar? If you want to keep up with the comments, those will give you overall views of what’s going on here, and each thread has its own specific comments RSS feed as well that you can check.

Anyway, I’m off until Tuesday so I’m hoping to relax, draw some comics, and gut a closet. And yell at the snow. And the Phillies. And maybe sleep now. Goodnight!


Yesterday, I was fine. We went to Penn Raceway with my folks and my brother and played the horse rases. It was awesome, and definitely something I’d be willing to do again. Somehow there’s something just much more interesting about it than playing the slots down in Atlantic City.

After that, we went back to my parents’ house and ate sandwiches and pizza and the like, hung out for a little while and came home. No problems there.

Went to bed at a decent hour (well, relatively decent) but I couldn’t sleep – I’d sleep for 15 or 20 minutes then wake up. And I was hot and I was cold and I was hot again and I was pretty nauseous and it was a pain in the tail because I was supposed to go in early this morning because we’re so far behind in our work.

And when I woke up this morning I discovered that overnight my body had converted to a snot factory. I’m stuffed up and my head is just throbbing and my eyes are watering and my throat’s sore. I’m betting it’s a summer cold (since I haven’t had mine this year). I just wish I’d’ve seen it coming. I’d’ve done something about it yesterday.

So it’s almost 10:30 and I got some more spotty sleep between 7 and now and I’m drinking water and probably going back to sleep.

Not my idea of fun.

So yesterday, I spent the day sleeping, wishing I was sleeping, or throwing up. Today’s not been so hot either. This is the third time I’ve been ill in January (sinus infection, massive head cold, now stomach flu) and I’ve about had enough. February had better be healthier.

How sick am I, you ask? I’m so sick that I tried to play Final Fantasy X for a few minutes and the graphics made me motion sick. I slept through almost half of each football game yesterday. I can’t drink soda. I’m too sick to be miserable.

I called my doctor’s office and they’re pretty sure it’s a 24-hour bug, which means I should be feeling better soon. If I’m not, they say I can head down to the emergency room and get a shot for nausea.

Bleh. back to sleep.

Site redesign take two!

It’s been, what? Six or seven months since a redesign? Anyway, hope you like it… I’m not happy with the comic navigation myself, but that’s because I’m fussy fussy fussy.

New features:

  • having your browser window too small shouldn’t cause a big empty white space at the top anymore.
  • the “links” list (fastest way to get to the forum) won’t spontaneously rearrange itself. the order you see is the order you get.
  • it just plain looks nicer than that boxy thing.
  • number of items in each category is posted in the category list
  • if you click the title of a given category, you can use “first / previous / next / current” links to navigate – this is especially handy for the comics, which are usually navigated that way everywhere else. (note: you’ll get all the comics – there’s no way to do this by subcategory yet… i’m still looking for one though.)
  • changed the RSS feed so you have to actually VISIT the site to view the comics. I miss your smiling faces!
  • code validates!

So, seeing as my stomach still hurts, sleeping’s going to be an interesting challenge, but i can’t miss work two days straight, so it’s off to bed I go.


If asked two hours ago, I would have said that I much prefer getting sick to being nauseous, because at least something’s happening to resolve the issue.

I’ve changed my mind.

What a lousy way to start a week. I’m going back to bed and will try to reboot Monday later.