Mark Barks On Becoming a New Dog Owner

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Things I learned on my first trip to the vet with Chauncey:

  • Although Chauncey’s are in very good shape, dogs his size often have problems with their knees and elbows
  • Dogs have elbows
  • All dogs should be on preventative heart worm medication and flea & tick medicine
  • Dog medicine is not cheap
  • Carrying a dog’s stool sample in a Ziploc bag in your coat pocket is just generally stressful
  • If you drive from Chicago to the vet in Schaumburg, people will assume you are a very devoted pet owner (even though you had to go there because your dog’s shelter organization was also in the suburbs)
  • Chauncey’s external lymph nodes feel fine
  • Something called an “external lymph node” exists
  • Chauncey has gum problems, and we need to start brushing his teeth a few times a week
  • There are print ads where people impersonate Julia (the waiting room had a poster showing a woman walking nine dogs).
  • Dogs in Chicago have to get vaccinated against some disease that is transmitted via rat urine
  • Stores like Costco carry discounted pet drugs now, but they’re often routed through places like the Cayman Islands and their veracity cannot be guaranteed
  • The vet who saw Chauncey tried to get Miguel Cabrera on his fantasy baseball team, but was unsuccessful
  • Chauncey’s weight at the time of the visit was 7.25 lbs
  • The vet “like(s) him at this weight” 
  • The staff at the office agreed that “Chauncey” was a better name than “Trusty”

Julia & I welcome any additional insight you have on dog ownership, even if you’re not a vet. We thank you for any comments you share. Seriously.





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