Who says guys don’t have maternal instinct?

My last post was a lamentation about blogger’s block. OK, so it was a pathetic pity party, but let’s not parse words, shall we?

A loyal reader of mine, let’s call her “Patrecia with an e” in order to protect her identity, suggested I should just write about what’s going on in my life right now. She actually suggested she would be interested to know. That took guts. Unfortunately for the rest of you, I took her advice to heart.

These last few days have been nerve-wracking. Our sweet little puppy, Sadie Mae, had to go in to be spayed this week. Like some soon-to-be mother about to give birth, I stressed out about this for the several days leading up to it. You’re probably wondering how a macho, Hollywood leading man type like myself could equate this to a maternal instinct, but to explain I need to go back to when we first got the puppy.


After arriving home from the breeder, one of the first things you are required to do is have the puppy examined by a vet so the guarantee is valid. The very next day I took her in. Except for a little “bump” on her belly which was a fairly harmless umbilical hernia, she got a rousing good bill of health and I thought all was well. However, within a few days she was coughing, breathing rapidly and throwing up. Back to the vet. Apparently she had contracted kennel cough during her previous visit to the vet. She immediately went on 10 days of antibiotics and a couple of other meds. Not being able to abide with her suffering in her crate during the night, I was up with her on my lap and wrapped in a blanket at all hours for several nights until the medicine finally did its job. Keep in mind this was a helpless, nine week old, four pound, nine ounce little fur ball who had just been extracted from the security of her mother and siblings without any say so in the matter. Someone had to fill that void. I was happy to do it. A strong emotional and, dare I say it, maternal bond developed between us during those early morning hours that has endured.

Anyway, back to this week. In spite of the fact we have had other dogs “fixed” before, I was extremely anxious about my lilliputian Sadie going under the knife. You see, she also had to have that umbilical hernia repaired during the procedure, adding to the risk. Suffice it to say, I had more than one restless night’s sleep and a few extra glasses of wine toward the end of the ordeal.

The day of the surgery was the worst. I had to have her in by 7:30 am. She came happily  and trustingly out of the house and bounded into the car, probably imagining another of our fun walks together. I kept thinking to myself this must be what it means when they say “leading a lamb to the slaughter.” She went willingly into the door at the vet and frolicked around until the tech came to get her. She then jumped in her arms and kissed her face as they disappeared behind the door. Those last 5 minutes raised my guilt several degrees above its already prominent level.

I tried to keep busy during the day, but everything I did was half-hearted and meaningless. When I got home from an errand there was a message from the vet to say everything went well and we could pick Sadie up at the end of the day, I couldn’t help but get misty-eyed. My little trooper had done it again.

She’s home now and trying to cope with a restrictive cone around her neck and soreness and itching from the incision, plus being quarantined from our other dog Bella, with whom she was inseparable.


They say that we can learn a lot about life from dogs. I’ve always agreed with that, now more than ever. My dear Sadie has taught yet another lesson, forgiveness. In spite being subjected to traumatic surgery instead of a fun walk, Sadie still wants to cuddle and love it up with me and doesn’t leave my side.

Truly, a mother’s best friend.