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Pamela Fagan Hutchins | The pain of puppy love.

D-day minus 1.


I <3 Petey.

How quickly Eric’s little Boston Terrier has become the canine love of my life.  It took, what, one week?  I knew I loved him madly, but I did not grasp the depth until last Thursday, at 6:45 a.m.

I was in the kitchen, and Petey was beside me.  He had stopped bounding around the house like a bunny rabbit, ears pinned back, legs outstretched in a joy-prance, long enough to gobble his Fromm’s gourmet puppy food,  milk, and chicken, warmed up to the perfect temperature for his eating pleasure. My kids Clark and Suz were shoveling muffins down like zombies.  Our big dogs were wolfing their breakfasts about 30 feet away down a long hall and in another room.

And then I heard one angry growl/bark, followed by a squeal and frantic breathless crying.


My sweety Petey.

I ran toward the sounds, which had come from the big dog area, my mind whirling.  Hadn’t Petey been at my feet?  How could he have made it back there so fast with none of us seeing him?

When I got to the room, I saw that Petey had scrambled under the electric piano, and his cries ripped through my gut.  Our beloved Cowboy was on his belly, crawling toward me in supplication.

“BAD DOG,” I yelled, and whacked him.  I didn’t have to see it to know what had happened.  Petey had come between 125-pound Cowboy and his food bowl.  If there was one thing Cowboy loved, it was food.  Our other big dog, Layla, normally waited to eat until Cowboy was done, because she didn’t want him to even think she was after his chow.

“Petey, Petey sweety, come here,” I cooed, and crawled after him as he ran from me, crying, under tables, chair, and piano.  I was faster, and I soon scooped him up to soothe him.  I held him to me, and his cries lessened.

“What did he do?  What did Cowboy do to him?”  Clark yelled, and he grabbed Cowboy and held him to the floor.

“He got upset when Petey tried to eat his food, but I already took care of it.”

“Don’t hurt Cowboy,” Suz yelled at Clark.

Clark couldn’t help it.  Petey’s yelps were tearing all of our hearts.  Cowboy took another few lumps, and Clark put the big dogs outside.

That’s when I saw it.

The room was dark – no lights on yet – and I had not seen any damage to Petey, so I assumed Cowboy had been all bark and no bite.  But I was wrong.

Petey’s bloody eye had popped out of its socket and hung from his face.

I screamed.  I sobbed and for our bedroom, my mind blank from everything except the searing pain of seeing Petey injured.  I called for my husband.  I don’t remember what I said as I ran.  I think I said, “Cowboy’s hurt him. Cowboy hurt Petey badly.  He’s hurt.  He’s hurt bad.”  Something like that.  Over and over.

Eric was in the shower.  He ran out in a towel, and the look I saw on his face matched the anguish I felt.

“I don’t know what to do, Eric,” I cried.

“I don’t either.”  He pulled off his towel and wrapped it around our whimpering, shivering baby.

“I’ll find a vet,” I said, and I sat down and started googling for emergency vet services, wrote down a number incorrectly,  wasted time retracing my steps, and finally reached one who talked me through what to do.  There was a clinic five minutes away that opened in 20.

“Is he in shock?”  I asked, as I pulled clothes onto my husband.

Eric held Petey tight against his chest. 

“I don’t know.  We just need to get him to a vet as fast as we can,” Eric said.

We sprinted through the house, with both teenagers and Clark’s girlfriend Allie, who had arrived during the pandemonium, on our heels.

I spoke through shaking lips, through my tears.  “You can bike or walk to school.  I’ll get you an excuse note later.  We have to take Petey to the hospital.”

Three stricken faces nodded.  Suz dissolved into sobs and put her head on the kitchen bar.  There was no time to comfort her.

Eric sat in the passenger seat with Petey, and I drove, immediately taking a wrong turn out of the driveway.

Relax.  Pull it together.  Don’t make this worse for Petey.

As I had searched for emergency care, I had told Eric what happened.  Now, I returned to the story, my mind mired three-feet deep in the quicksand of this memory.

“Damn Cowboy.  Stupid stupid Cowboy,” I said, my mental instructions to calm myself already history.

“If he had wanted to hurt him, Petey would be dead.  He didn’t mean to hurt him,” Eric said.

I pictured the giant yellow dog on his belly, whining, crawling toward me, before I had even found Petey.  Cowboy.  Our big yellow Lab, our pet, whom we loved.

“I know.  I know.  I know.  I just hate him right now.  I can’t help it.  He hurt Petey.  And I could have stopped it.  How did I let Petey out of my sight?  Why didn’t I feed Cowboy outside?  I let this happen.  Oh Petey, oh Petey.”  I could hardly drive, but we were almost there.

The clinic wasn’t open yet, but I rang the bell, and a kind young man opened the front door.  “Our puppy, his eye,” I got out, then Eric was beside me with Petey and showed him to the man.

“His eye and his face, it’s an emergency, it’s bad,” Eric said.

The young man nodded and ushered Eric straight back to the surgical suite, as he yelled for a vet.  I tried to fill out the forms but my stress-overloaded mind couldn’t remember the date or our zip code.  Less than ten minutes later, Eric was sitting beside me, and five people were clustered over Petey, taking care of him.  Eric put his arms around me, and I pressed my wet face into his shoulder and let my sobs bounce us  in a oddly calming rhythm.

We started a dialogue by text with the kids, who had decided to wait for us and solve the issues with their absence from high school later.  Suz was terrified we would give Cowboy away.

Eric and I looked deep into each other’s eyes, and he shook his head, “no.”

“No.  He is family,”  Eric typed.

Before long, the vet came with an update, then invited us back to be with our little buddy, who was under anesthesia.

“I consulted an ophthalmologist.  This is the worst swelling I’ve ever seen.  The eye was intact, but the optic nerve was damaged.  It’s not uncommon for breeds with flat faces and protruding eyes to have an eye pop out.  Sometimes they keep their sight, sometimes not.  But Petey has only about a 1-2% chance of seeing out of this eye.  He may not even keep it.  But we’ll do everything we can to make both things possible, and even if we have to remove the eye later, it won’t affect his quality of life.  We’ve managed to get the eye back in the socket, but just barely.  Thank goodness  you were able to come quickly, or we wouldn’t have been able to.  We’ve sewed it shut.  His stitches will stay in for 4 weeks, then come out one stitch a week.  You have your work cut out for you.”  She put her hand on Petey’s side for a moment, looking at him.

She explained the complicated regimen of creams, pills, and icing.  We stroked Petey’s warm body.  I cried some more, and a vet tech held a box of Kleenex out to me.

“Your main challenge is that in 24 hours he’ll want to resume normal puppyhoood, and you need to keep him still enough that he doesn’t pop the eye back out.  Keep him away from the excitement of the big dogs as much as you can.”

The big dogs.  Cowboy.  We had already explained how it happened.  I didn’t know how to reconcile Petey’s eye with my love for Cowboy, or my personal guilt, and, frankly, I wasn’t ready to do either one yet.

As if she heard my tortured thoughts, she went on.  “Petey acted like a terrier puppy.  Cowboy acted like a normal dog.  This kind of thing happens.  They’ll probably be best friends someday.”  She gestured toward Petey.  “Don’t be too hard on your big dog.  There’s no lacerations to his face or eye.  It could have just popped out from a blow, like from the big dog’s head, or from furniture or the wall.  I’ve seen bug-eyed dogs like him run into walls and ruin their eyes more than once.  They have no structural protection.”

12 hours before...

Images flashed through my mind in a crazy high speed slide show.  Cowboy crawling toward me on his belly.  Petey’s swagger as he sidled up to Cowboy and sat on his leg the night before.  Petey leaping up to lick Cowboy’s mouth.  Petey’s dangling eye and bloody face.

They brought Petey out of his anesthesia-induced sleep, and he immediately sat bolt upright, looking loopy but ready for a fight.  He earned  an admiring round of laughs from his five medical helpers.

“What a tough little guy!”  one of them exclaimed.

Yes, he was.

Four hours later, I brought Petey home.  That was four days ago.  It’s been stressful, emotional, and very busy since then, and, I confess, I cried for a good part of the first 24 hours.  We’ve had a few high risk moments, too.  Petey has gotten excited and leaped into the air in a sideways twist and body slammed himself, bad eye side hitting first, into the floor.  He has fallen into our backyard pond, completely immersing in dirty water the eye I was supposed to keep dry.  He managed to sneak a back-footed scratch of his eyelid when I wasn’t looking, drawing blood.  He has beaten his own eye against the floor playing with Stinky Bunny.  He has bumped into furniture on his blind side.  Over and over again, I hear his yelp of pain.

10 hours after.

But he has thrived. He has eaten like a champ, he tolerates his eye meds, and he gives kisses just as freely as before.  He dashes around like his cranked-up jackrabbit self.  He has discovered that he likes the T-bones I  use to distract him from scratching even more than he likes Boston Market chicken.  Being an injured dog has its privileges.  He even got to sleep in our bed so I could monitor the ever present danger of more scratching.

Teeny tiny ice pack. Eric even let him sleep on the AZ Cardinals blanket.

And, the biggest thing?  The thing that is causing my heart to swell like a water balloon in my chest?

Cowboy.  Yes, it is Cowboy.

Cowboy was banished to the backyard for a full 24 hours post-incident.  I couldn’t even look at him.  It took Eric three full days to speak to Cowboy.  Suz pleaded with us to forgive him, but just the thought of the big dog threw me right back into reliving the experience of Petey’s trauma.

When I let Cowboy in the house for the first time after Petey’s injury, I held our little Boston in my arms.  Petey with his giant swollen eye.  Petey who would likely never see again from his left eye, and who would never look the same.

36 hours after, with a T-bone :-)

Cowboy walked straight up to Petey and me, sniffed of Petey, and licked his face.  He nudged Petey’s belly with his giant muzzle.  Petey was in ecstasy.  His body wriggled in my arms.  He strained and stretched to lick Cowboy back.  Then Cowboy put his bony dinosaur head into my hand and stared up into my eyes and wagged his tail slowly.  He talked to me, he cried to me in his Chewbacca language.  Can a dog feel remorse, and ask for forgiveness?  This one sure seemed to.

48 hours later, 1st trip to Nowheresville. Hanging with his big yellow friend.

I put Petey on the ground, and he pogo’ed up to kiss Cowboy.  Cowboy hung around for some Petey love for a moment, then ambled off to lie down in his favorite spot.

Someday they will be best friends.

Petey will be fine.

If their hearts are big enough to love past this horrible, traumatic incident — this tragedy — then mine is, too.

Puppy love.

We’ve got it bad.

60 hours later, sneaking a nap on the laundry room floor after playing his heart out.

I <3 Petey, the slightly-less-beautiful-than-before dog.  I love him even more than I did when he had two big black eyes that shone with mischief.  In fact, I love him twice as much with one eye as I did with two.

And I love the big yellow dog; I have since he was our silly puppy.  I always will.

Have a good week, everyone.  I’m off to continue my temporarily full time job as nursemaid to a 7-pound dog.


p.s. I’ll keep all you animal lovers posted on his progress, I promise.

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79 Responses to The pain of puppy love.

  1. Susan says:

    I love Petey too. Poor Cowboy, he must feel terrible. Please post follow up pics.
    Much Love

    • Pamela says:

      Cowboy is an object lesson in animal intelligence, feelings, and depth. He DOES feel terrible. He made his up front resentment of Petey very clear, but he was gentle and tolerant of him. He just shunned US. But since Cowboy’s spate of temper and Petey’s injury (however it technically happened, which we will never know), Cowboy has suffered. All resistance to Petey’s role in our household is gone. He loves Petey. Petey is his little guy. And he has expressed verbally and nonverbally his remorse to both Eric and me. It was quite painful to hear him.

  2. ally says:

    awww, bless his heart. I would have been hysterical, and Im an OR nurse…wishing little Petey a fast recovery xx

  3. Sandy Webb says:

    Well, this of course made me cry. Poor, poor Petey. Eric is right, dogs are family and even though they really piss us off sometimes getting rid of them is never an option. One of my Australian Cattle Dogs went totally blind last year at the age of 10, he also has liver failure and Cushings disease. I call him my special needs dog and believe me there are days when it all just seems too much to take care of him….then he wags his little stub because he hears my voice and my heart just melts for him.

    I am sure you are a great nursemaid to Petey and he will love you even more for taking care of him. Keep posting updates please.

    • Pamela says:

      Oh, your poor baby. Yes, they are extra work but I also believe you love them in a different way. Believe me, I feel that way about my son who has ADHD & Asperger’s Syndrome. And about my Petey.

      I will definitely keep you up to date.

      Today he was a total little shit :-) and that of course is normal for a 3-month old Boston Terrier, so that is a good thing.

  4. Eric Hutchins says:

    The sight of Pamela running into the bathroom with Petey in her arms, the awful way he looked, and the pain in Pamelas eyes and voice are one of those mental snapshots that I am sure will always stay with me.

    Petey is so smart and full of life and personality there is no doubt that he is a great addition. AND Cowboy is a very very special dog. I have had a lot of animals around me all of my life and I have never been around one that has more depth of emotion, and expression of that emotion than Cowboy.

    There is no doubt that Cowboy has been rattled by the entry of Petey in to our lives. It is completely clear in his face that he is worried about where he stands, worried that he is no longer the apple of the families eye, that we are phasing him out. I am sure there was some frustration in him when Petey charged the alpha dogs food bowl, AND I also know for sure that he did not intend to do the damage he did. It is likely that just snapping that 10 pound head around and it hitting Petey in the temple was enough to pop the eye out.

    • Pamela says:

      You know, the vet and her staff made me feel so much better about Cowboy, and myself. I had worried that it made Cowboy and Layla feel more pushed out by Petey to force them to eat outside, when they had always eaten inside. And everyone is STARVING (ha ha) in the morning, and in a hurry, with the kids to school and you and I to work. I hate that I didn’t have Petey shut in a room to eat alone where he couldn’t run out. I thought I was on top of it. Anyway, I digress. The vet and her staff made me feel like what I did was normal, and what both dogs did was normal. That we were ok and it would all be ok, even if Petey has to have his eye removed. Which it will be (OK). I know that Petey is no less happy and no less WILDLY HYPER than he was when both eyes worked.

      It is also clear that it only hurts now if he whacks it on something. The swelling is down a LOT, and he doesn’t flinch when we put his meds in his eye, and he cried and fought the first few days.

      I only want him not to hurt, if possible. The rest is gravy.

  5. Eric Hutchins says:

    The thing that amazes me the most about all of this is the complete and absolute forgiveness on the part of Petey. He loves Cowboy completely and wants so badly for him to love him back.

    It makes me think about the grudge that I still hold for the person that cut me off in traffic the other day….

    I could learn something important from a little dog in this area.

  6. Rhonda says:

    I literally held my face between my hands and cried as I read this! I cried about Petey’s injury and then I cried about Cowboy’s remorse! I cried about Sami fearing Cowboy would be given away. I cried when the dogs “licked and made up”. What a story! Keeping Petey and you all in my prayers!

  7. Eric Hutchins via Facebook says:

    What incredible personalities.

  8. Oh, Pamela, how horribly traumatic for you all. I am praying for a full and speedy recovery for Petey. So sorry you had to go through it.

  9. Thanks Lou Ann. He was full of piss and vinegar today, a normal Boston 3 month old, and his eye only seems to hurt if he hits it on something. The challenge is that as hyper and feisty as Bostons are, he wants to do things that endanger the eye all the time. I am getting a lot of exercise running after him, trying to stop him. I wish I could give him a sedative. Doggy benadryl!

  10. Glad he is feeling better. How about a cone until his eye recovers? It would keep him from hitting it on things. My dog and one of my cats have experienced the cone at one time or another–they hate it but it works.

  11. I wanted a cone but the vet was against it, although I’m not 100% sure why, and honestly some parts of being at the clinic are a black hole in my memory. I’m taking him in Tuesday and we’ll revisit it, b/c the little bugger is crazy fast.

  12. Pamela says:

    Thanks Rhonda. I like to think that if Eric had not been there I would have handled it better, but I’m not sure. I shorted out. It was horrible. Poor sweety Petey. And poor sad Cowboy.

  13. The collar is a mixed blessing. I’m not sure it would help an eye injury much, and it might hurt more.than it helps. Sandy’s is great for preventing licking the incision, but her balance is terrible and she bumps/falls more wih it on, and we have to keep her corralled to protect her knees. I’m.curious if that’s maybe why your doc was anti.

  14. I’ll get you’re right. The balance and bumping would be a big problem. I’ll ask her.

  15. Gosh I fell in love with Petey too. Thanks for sharing him with us. He’s a lucky little doggie dude to have ya’ll for his humans.

    • Pamela says:

      Thanks Theresa. He is awesome. I have had so many people send along wonderful stories of their blind or partially blind dogs, and I know he will be just fine. He’s a ball of fire.

  16. Lisa Dishman Baer via Facebook says:

    Count me in…heal Petey, heal!

  17. glenda malzi says:

    I had an eleven pound blind boston terrier or terror, as my mom refered to him. Taz was great, knew where his toy box was located and his bed, don’t mess with either. He would bring us toys when he wanted to play and jump on the sofa beside of me when he wanted some lovin’. He even picked a fight with a pitt bull and walked away.
    No matter the outcome, Petey will be fine.

  18. LOL (from twitter): From @StayAtHomeBabe —
    Does it say something really bad about me that “one-eyed rock star” sounded like a dirty euphemism to me?

  19. Nikki says:

    I originally saw your post about the new pup, Petey on facebook…and then I saw that he had been injured. I think because I have my own little Boston, I felt so sad to hear about it! When I saw your blog post, I couldn’t keep from reading it, though I knew it would be heart wrenching! As always, your words paint a picture of the story and I was so engrossed that I almost started crying at work! I’m glad to hear that Petey and Cowboy have made amends and that all are doing well. I do think little Petey is quite a doll no matter how many eyes he has! I’m sending rapid recovery wishes for him (and all of you!)

    • Pamela says:

      Thanks Nikki. Aren’t the little Boston’s such wonderful personalities? Petey feels great. Whether he keeps his eye remains to be seen, but, he doesn’t seem to miss it at all!

  20. I didn’t even want to read this. It made me cringe from the first growl/bark and squeal and I thought, “I can’t read this” because I just knew it would have an unhappy ending. But I read on because if you experienced it, the least I could do was read it! Phew. I’m glad you forgave Cowboy because he’s your biggest baby-love. And I believe with you that Petey is going to be fine – sounds like he’s halfway there.

  21. Wow, poor Petey! Poor everybody involved in all that craziness!

    A friend’s pug lost an eye in a similar way. (Their other dog was territorial and attacked.) But they’re resilient little things; while the pug is missing an eye, years later, he’s fine. And I’m sure Petey will be fine, too.

    But man, what a horrible ordeal! :(

    • Pamela says:

      I’m so glad you shared this story. I love Bostons and pugs and pekignese, but the stories I’ve heard about eyes are all so similar. But it comforts me, it validates what the vet told me, and it shows me Petey will truly be fine.

  22. Eric Hutchins says:

    It really seems to be healing well to me, and I will maintain hope for the miracle that he will have vision in that eye but if he doesn’t it is already very clear that he is going to be completely fine. The swelling is way down and his energy way up. He is smart playful and just totally full of life.
    Pamela and I talked last night about how strange it is that this little dog can have such and impact on us. I KNOW that Pamela has a lot more to say then just talk about a little dog and I know that she will. But I am sure that over the years there will be plenty of Petey stories. At least I wont be the only one in the family providing comic relief!

  23. Pamela says:

    LOL, no one can replace you for comedy, dear.

    And, yes, I have a lot more to say than dog stories. But the pets are a big part of our life, and contribute to the enormous love in our household — they are part of my voice (all my stories have animals) — so there will always be pet stories too :)

  24. nat says:

    Tearfully – I feel your pain – we love so deeply – dogs too – they need us as newborn human babies need – only dogs show it through undying loyalty, aware of the pecking order – humans struggle with these concepts – I don’t think dogs feel remorse because I think all of their actions and intensions are devoid of evil intent – they act instinctively – humans are the keepers of remorse and forgiveness – poor sweet Petey broke the big doggy rules because he is a puppy – now he knows – I am sure Cowboy is confused – confused like our dog Samba was (Samba came from Wuthering Heigts, Annaly STX aka Moon Valley Mountain)- she was abandoned by the rule breaking humans who left her and other dogs there to starve or worse when they were kicked out of the house for breach of contract – Samba learned to fend for herself the dirty dog way before she landed at Salt River, delivered by the real estate agent(my mother)who raised a “somewhat” bleeding heart suckerette – me – I say somewhat because I realize that Samba and our first dog Reggae, along with my daughter have a divine line into my conscience and are actually training me to be a better person – through error and trial – Samba came to our cozy plateau ready to love and be loved and to take advantage of all that good fortune might offer a dog – such as open car windows of home autos or visiting ones which led to a host of hidden treasures…laundry, food, apholstery – Samba was thrilled to be ocean front where she could lead Reggae on wonderful doggy adventures to the sea and stinnky mangrove mud bathes – she now had neighbors to steal from and brought home the most amazing things that I have been to busy to attempt to returned such as plastic cat food containers full of food, unopened express mail (ok, I called this one in because it said “medical supplies” and I imagined Samba had absconded with some poor islanders several month supply of life or death meds not available on island and had to endure the most annoying process of returning the stuff that was beat up from Samba trying to get into the box ….they thought I was a drug adict who was trying to get a reward for the box which I then opened out of spite only to find field sutures and needles…they finally picked the box up from my office and seemed thankful after all and I was really glad Samba did not eat any needles)- she has delivered large land crabs in various states of almost dead – shredded large bags of other peoples trach in my driveway before I need to dash to work and school – coconuts – used diaphers – the deer no longer visit and no birds dare land – my nerves have b een frazzled by this dog/teacher AND ONE DAY – a rooster wondered onto the property when my daughter, myself, my father and the dogs were in the yard, I was holding the broom I had just swept the door stoop with when Samba cought sight of the rooster and charged – something in me clicked and I tore after Samba still holding the broom – please now picture a west indian version of Mini Mouse in a sarong running down Figero the cat who has Frankie the bird in its mouth – I did not know I could run so fast – I gained on Samba shrieking shamelessly for her to “NO!” “NO!” “NO! and “BAD DOG” while my 6 year old girl, 83 year old father and second dog watched in awe – of my speed perhaps or maybe the suspense as I was holding a broom and gaining fast on Samba and the screeching chicken – by the way, Samba did not like to give up her finds and she made some impressive fakes and dashes before I raised the broom hysterically and brought it down over her back and broke the stick in half – she dropped the cock – the spectators all were speech and barkless as Samba cowered at my feet – my daughter shouted “MOMMY! don’t hurt Samba!” – the chicken ran away but I fealt terrible – though Samba is a very thick pit bull mix and seemed fine, i had just broken the rules – I acted poorly and got between aur dog who was defending our land from everything including the black cock – yes I saved it’s life BUT perhaps I broke Samba’s trust in me when I broke the stick – did I terrorize my daughter? somewhat and father? yes – he said “you could have really hurt the dog” and “you must have hit her pretty hard to break the stick” – he was right – I was ashamed and still am so nobody try to comfort me – I explained to my daughter that my emotions got the best of me and that I was very sorry and would never do anything like that again -it was not worth it – one day I will fence and I hope you continue to feed the big dogs apart from one another – all my love to you, the kids and the whole furry family (especially Petey and nurse Pamelot, first responder) as we live and learn together – one love and forgiveness.

    • Pamela says:

      Oh sweetie, I can relate to your Samba story. It’s how I felt (and Clark felt) after we got angry at Cowboy. How tortured the love, at times. We’ve been lovin’ the stuffin’ out of Cowboy, and we are also running a complex feeding schedule now that keeps everyone apart. It’s much harder than it sounds. Petey is fast like bunny. Whoa.

  25. Ally says:

    I just cried in my breakfast! Of course, I still love your Cowboy stories, so my heart was crying for him just as much as Petey! :)

  26. —-Pamelot,
    Damn you.

    I am sobbing. My heart is throbbing. My stomach hurts.

    This was one of the most beautiful, breathtaking stories i’ve ever read.

    Abundantly gorgeous. Cowboy & Petey are angels. I love both of them already.

    —-please send this in to a dog magazine. This is incredibly moving & must be shared. Xxx

    • Pamela says:

      Sorry for the tears, darlin, but dang that puppy love can pull those big emotions right out.

      That is a good idea about the dog magazine. I will look into that :)

  27. Deborah says:

    I also had a feeding problem with my 10 yr old Rhodesian Ridgeback and a new “crucian pit bull mix” puppy we adopted from the shelter. Supposedly, the puppy was given up by the owner to the shelter at the age of 4 months. So we didn’t suspect any type of fighting for food or going hungry when we adopted him. Yet, we have had two instances where the puppy (now 9 months old) has attacked the Ridgeback while eating her food. We now feed at different schedules as you do. It does take some doing, but no more dog/puppy food fights. How we love our dogs and all the joy they bring to our lives. Our best wishes for a speedy recovery go out to Petey.

  28. […] Is it just me, or has Petey gotten a little “fluffy” around the belly?  It’s hard to tell a hurt baby no. […]

  29. Lisa Dishman Baer via Facebook says:

    Prayers for Petey!!

  30. Glenda Turner Malzi via Facebook says:

    praying for Petey

  31. Thanks Glenda and Lisa. Waiting to hear something. It’s been five hours. They should give an anxious dog mama a break and call. I may break down and call them soon.

  32. Petey gets to come home in 15 minutes and he is good to go, but the little trouble maker has gone from a check up on 11-3 for a stitch removal to “come see us once a week”. Sheesh. High maintenance puppy (but worth it)

  33. […] doesn’t flow like a river at our house.  Between kid drama (always), puppy drama, work, finances, and Eric’s and family health issues, peace has dammed up the waterway […]

  34. […] When Cowboy growled and snapped at our one-eyed Boston Terrier puppy Petey a few weeks ago (after the eye injury), Layla abandoned her normal quiet and leaped on Cowboy’s back with a ferocious snarl and […]

  35. My daughter has just read me your story and its unbelievable. Three weeks ago we were all dashing around the house getting ready for work and school when our little Cleo, also a Boston, at the time 9 weeks old, ran into the kitchen and we also just heard a growl/snap noise from our Golden Retriever Duke. Cleo screamed and I just froze. She was facing the washing machine when my husband got to her and he picked her up and gave her to my daughter so he could deal with Duke, all I remember was Daniella screaming. It was horrific, out beautiful little Clee-flea’s eye had popped out of her little face and I could have died at the sight. My husband and daughter raced out the house and down the road to the 24hr vet, I followed 5 minutes later with my son. There was no vet on duty so they gave her a shot for the pain and put a dish on her head. We had to take her home and wait for our vet to open at 7h30. She had to have her eye removed and we were broken. Kids stayed at home that day, I could hardly function. Poor little thing. We fetched her at 3pm and she slept till the next day. We were convinced that her other eye was also blind but after a trip to the animal eye clinic discovered it is perfect, thank goodness. Duke was in the dog box big time and I still don’t leave them alone together. She has made a miraculous recovery and is back to her nutty little self and we are just so grateful. She is also the first dog in our house to make it onto the bed at night, but she is such a fabulous little snuggler. Just love her. Duke is a big baffoon and I’m sure that they too will one day be the best of friends. Had to share our story with you. Thanks for sharing yours. SAM

    • Pamela says:

      oh Sam! I feel ya! thank you for sharin. g! I am so glad Cleo is ok. Petey kept his eye, but it is blind and points up and out, he looks insane from one side :) We <3 him more than we can say. But what an awful horrific thing to go through. hugs to you all!!! hugs to Cleo and to poor big Duke.

      Petey is now 5 months, and he is 11 pounds. He can run like the wind and we let him and Cowboy interact now. Petey has learned how one interacts with the Alpha Male, and he sprints at the first sign that all is not perfect in Cowboy's world. But for about 5 weeks, we didn't let them near each other.

      Petey has also made it into bed, only from 5 am thru our getting up time. Well, that up until we go to bed. And several times during the day. OK, we've pretty much only kick him out a few hours a night! :)

  36. […] have so much: a one-eyed dog, a pink bike, a Quacker in Nowheresville, and a certain Mother of the Year title for my parenting […]

  37. […] added another dog (Petey!) to our menagerie of pets.  He came with two eyes, but he’s down to one, thanks to our big yellow alpha male dog […]

  38. Nanny Anna says:

    We had EXACTLY this same thing happen in our home in June… ( to our Pickle (same eye even). I still feel so guilty about it today, six months later. Pickle doesn’t seem to care at all. She is so resilient…just picked up her puppy boot straps and celebrated that she still had one eye. Every time I get sick or injured since then I think, “Don’t feel sorry for yourself, you didn’t lose an eye!”

    I do hope that Petey and Cowboy become fast friends…our Pickle and Max were already constant companions before this even, and are no less close since. Of course we now have Max on Prozac, because he was getting alpha bossy about food, toys, us…but we made adjustments in our home and all is well so far.

    HUGS to Petey!


    • Pamela says:

      And hugs back to you! I remember you or your daughter or your mom telling me this story a few weeks ago. I think I recall Pickle has no eye. Petey kept his, but, ugh, it’s UGLY, it points up/out, and is continuously zombie red. We have to put drops in it twice a day. Once a week the cat sxratches it and we’re back to bacitracin. I see eyelessness in Petey’s future, but that may be an improvement. He and Cowboy get along great!!

      Hugs to Pickle!

      • Nanny Anna says:

        Pickle’s eye was not save-able. The optic nerves were completely severed. Fortunately for her, the patch around her eye is all black so people don’t really notice it until they really look or get close enough to her. Then they go, “OH, she is missing an eye!”, all shocked, lol. She is still beautiful in our eyes. She has an injury to the other eye that causes blurred vision (the vet said) right in the middle of her focal point, but she has adjusted just fine. At first she would bump in to things, and take stairs slower, but now she just turns her head to the side with the eye and charges head on. It is kind of funny when you say something to her and her head is turned so she cannot see you…she whips her head all the way around to look you straight in her one eye with a cocked head. We think it is kind of sweet.

        I totally agree with you about Bostons. I got Pickle to fill my newly empty nest…she snorts and grunts like a baby and she is a cuddle bug. Then a few years later when our old lab passed away, we got a new Boston (Max). Even with all their quirky health needs, I totally love them and don’t see myself getting anything but Bostons in the future.

        Too bad Pickle is spayed…we might have been able to introduce them. We allowed her to have one litter when she was 2. She was an awesome mommy, but it broke our hearts to let the babies go, so we decided to not do it again.

        Glad to hear Cowboy and Petey get along now. There is always an adjustment when a new four-legged baby joins the family.


        • Pamela says:

          I LOVE the snorts and grunts and cuddling. Love love love love love. Such fun dogs. Watching Petey adjust to his one-eyed vision was interesting. Like Pickle, he bumped into a lot of things. He still runs into things pell mell and ends up with a swollen eyeball :-( But he has adjusted great. He loves to play fight with us holding onto and shaking a toy for him. He has learned to whip his head around, and yes that cocked head makes my heart melt. Oh my Petey Sweetie! And his new friend Pickle!

  39. […] of fate so painfully ironic that the angels wept, the heir apparent to the kingdom of the giant yellow dog who had stolen Petey’s eye. To the home Cowboy was to have at Nowheresville, the home that should have replaced his beloved […]

  40. […] not for lack of trying. He only spent a night on the bed with us once before, and that was the night of the day that Cowboy put Petey’s eye out. You would have let the little bugger sleep with you that night, too, I […]

  41. […] catching hell. I’m rethinking everything now. His disability (one eye)? He could have stuck his head in Cowboy’s mouth intentionally. His bi-racial heritage (his coat is half black and half white)? Might be nothing […]

    • Scot Poore says:

      Hi Pam, we just went through the whole horrible eye popping out incident last night, our 2 year old pitbull, who normally is really good with all the dogs, attacked our 6 year old boston terrier Jack, we rushed him to the emergency vet clinic, which of course is over an hour away, but i made it in record time, the vet said that most likely his right eye was shot, and worse case cenario, we would eventually have to have it completly removed, when my sister and i heard her say that, we just about lost it, there was no way that our precious Jackson Brown (we call him that because of his right eye being brown and ledt eye blue) could be seen without his brown eye, it just broke our hearts.

      We decided to give Jack a fighting chance, and have his eye put back in, and god willing, maybe regain some of his vision some day, but the vet said she does not see that happening, so we eventually left the emergency clinic around 11:30 pm or so, i don’t remeber it was all a blur, and right now we are praying for Jack with all our might, for him to pull through, as for our pitbull, i am mad as hell at her, like you and eric were at cowboy, i’m not sure if my sister will ever forgive her, but as you said the love these animals give, it’s hard not to eventually forgive them, as i don’t think she actually knew what she did, as she keeps trying to get my attention and pet and love her, as she always sleeps with me in my bed, i guess were attached at the hip.

      I am so glad to that Petey is doing well, when i told my sister, her name is Pam as well, how ironic, about Petey and i told her your name was Pam as well, she about flipped at how close we are in name and incidents, we’ll be praying for you and Petey, I will update you about Jack, as they said he may be able to come home saturday afternoon.

      • Scot Poore says:

        I was hoping that we were not going to receive a phone call during the night about Jack, as the vet said they would call after she was able thoroughly examine Jack’s eye,and let us know if his eye had to be removed, in our case no news was good news!!

        Just called the clinic at 7:00 a.m, they said Jack pulled through just fine, but will probably be blind in his right eye, when the vet told us that we were completely heart broken, she also told us that the muscles that hold his eye in place were damaged really bad, and the sutures will have to stay in longer than expected.

        But our Jackson Brown will be coming home ythis afternoon, thank god, can’t wait to pick him up and bring him back home.

        I will update his progress to let you all know how he is doing, thanks alot to you Pam & Eric as your posts kept us in the right frame of mind, during what was an awful night, thank you.

        • Pamela says:

          Oh Scot, my heart goes out to you and Jackson Brown and Pam. Petey had stitches in for nearly two months, and the eye had muscle damage so it wanders a bit up and to the outside, but it gives him such swagger. :) He is the most loving amazing dog. That was 5 months ago, and I want you to watch the video I shot of him with Cowboy yesterday, it will keep your mind right (it’s short).

          Hang in there, and love him fiercely. The bond you forge with him while he is scared and hurting and recovering will be even stronger than you had with him before. They recover from the loss of sight very quickly — and it will break your heart every time you hear the yelp that means he ran bad-eye-first into something.

          I am glad our story helped you. I’m going to email you. Hang in there.

          • Scot Poore says:

            Pam, thanks so much for your encouraging words, when i get the chance i will watch the video, just been extremely busy with giving Jack his med’s and eye ointment, since we brought him home a couple hours ago, also keeping him comfortable, and showering him with love.

            I just got back from walmart, bought safety bed rails, to put under the mattress, as Jack seems to want to get real close the edge of the bed, since he can’t see to well i don’t want thim to fall off and hurt himself, so for the time being were going to have to treat him like a new born baby, especially while we are sleeping at night.

            I’ll keep you posted on Jack’s rehab, and thanks alot for letting me know how long Petey’s stitches were in for, as this will give us a round about time frame that we can maybe expect Jack’s eye to start looking alot better, the vet said that Jack may have the wandering eye as well, i can’t wait to see his swagger.

          • Pamela says:

            Yay Jack! I bought tiny individual ice packs — smaller than standard ice cubes, and, wrapped in cloth, they were just right for icing (mostly above his big swollen orb). I had bought them originally for school lunches but I can’t remember where I got them.
            we were able to take out one stitch a week after 4 weeks. They were concerned about those eye muscles and his ability to blink sp they took it slow. Swelling tool about a month to get back to normal. He took the last stitch out himself (oops) Amd he had some ugly spots from stitches and stress on his eyelid originally but it ia fine now.
            We treated him like a newborn too, I must admit. And we all felt better for it.

            So happy tO hear he’s home!

  42. Scot Poore says:

    We could sure use those individual ice packs right now, as the swelling above his right eye is rather large, but they said the swelling would go down in a month or so, it’s pretty wild how Jack & Petey’s situations are almost the same, except for the kind of dog that did inflicted the trauma.

    He gets pretty restless at times, so i either have to hold and baby him or put him down on the floor and let him walk around a bit and see how able he is to move about the house, he just about runs into everything, but i’m right there to make sure he does not, it’s only been about 12 hours or so since he came home, and the eye actually looks alot better than when i first seen it at the emergency vet hospital earlier today.

    Lastly, i meant to say this earlier, we took the cone off his head on the drive home and have left it off the whole day, and he has not even attempted to scratch his eye, but before he goes to bed we’ll put the cone back on, the vet said it would be bad if he slept with it off, because if he slept on a pillow, and the discharge that came out during the night may get him a little stuck on the pillow and could pull some of his stitches out, well i blabbed on enough for now, please keep in touch, as i really enjoy talking to you about Jack and Petey, thanks.

    • Pamela says:

      We tried to use the cone when Petey slept too, as much as we could. The cone is a challenge. I don’t know what all they have you giving him, but Petey was on an oral steroid for the first 10 days, and pain pills, which made him sleepy (sleepy = good for icing). The whole time the stitches were in we used an antibiotic cream on and into his eye. FYI,we learned that the salve/cream we were using was simply Neosporin :) but marked up a bajillion times, so in the last few weeks we switched to Neosporin. We were told to keep him still for a week (we made it three days anyway) away from other dogs, and to not let anything squeeze his neck/head/face. Also, our backyard has a pond, and he walks by it to go to the bathroom, and on day 4, he fell in. I was right there even, and he managed to fall in, complete submersion. The pain pills made him woozy.

      Truly, you will be shocked at how fast Jack adjusts, visually. He’ll feel good in 2-3 days, he’ll be like he never saw out of 2 eyes within a month. I have an internet friend whose dog lost both her eyes (also a Boston Terrier) and the dog could sprint around the house without running into anything, fetch toys, knew where all her stuff was, and still loved to play. Interesting, isn’t it, the resiliency? But you sure hate them to get into situations where they prove they have it. Better not to ever have them hurt.

      I was having flashbacks last night, remembering Petey’s cries that morning, since we’ve been talking about Jack. Petey is FINE, and it still makes me cry to remember it.

      My husband asked about Jack this morning :)

  43. Scot Poore says:

    Thanks for the tip on the neosporin, should have figured that one out myself, i told my sister that, and she said that we need to get the neosporin for pain, so on our next trip to meijers or walmart, were going to pick some up.

    Went to the vet today around 2:30 pm or so, for a follow up on Jack’s eye, the vet took him out of the room to go clean his eye up a little and reapply some ointment and when she came back, she said a little of swelling went down and hid eye looked really good, got home and told sis the good news, she was happy to hear that, calmed her down a liitle more, she’s been a mess since the whole thing started.

    Could ya tell me how you posted pis’s of Petey, did you just copy and paste them, or was it a little more detailed than that, let me know, as i want to put pic’s of Jack up for all to see, well it’s getting pretty late, think i’ll wrap things up for the night, talk to ya later.

    • Pamela says:

      That’s awesome that the vet was happy with his progress and the reduced swelling. I can understand being a mess. It’s so horrifying.

      I post them through my blog that is hosted on my website (not simple), but I can tell you 3 simple ways:
      1. a account — it’s a photo posting/sharing site. EASY. my mother-in-law uses it. then you just send people the links.
      2. — set up a free blog (easy), ie, Jackson Brown’s Road to Recovery, and when you add new blog posts, you can insert pictures — it tells you how. it’s a little harder than flickr.
      3. of course, Facebook works well for photo posting, too. but flickr is easier and just for photos and videos.

      also, if you want to read any more about petey’s recovery, i write about him a lot 😉 and here’s the link to all things petey:
      it might encourage your sister to see pictures of petey in recovery and post recovery, so you can envision jack recovering, and not stay in that awful moment of when it happens and when they are hurting and swollen.

      I’d love to see some Jack pictures!!

  44. Scot Poore says:

    Thanks for the info about puting up pictures, when i get the channce i’ll try one of them.

    Last night when it was time to go to bed, Jack was still so restless, as he really had not slept since he came home saturday, so we gave him the sedative to make him sleep, and accidently gave him one to many (on the bottle it said to give one 1/4 tablet every 12-24 hrs.), we accidently gave him two 1/4 tablets, boy was he fighting to stay awake, it was kinda funny watching him stumble around a bit, he did not want me to leave, kept wanting me to pick him up and hold him, finally he went to sleep, i felt bad for giving him a little too much, but in the end he really needed to sleep.

    Today at 4:30 pm we have to bring him to his real vet doctor, which is only 3-4 minutes from the house, they want us to bring his all his med’s and ointment, so that way they can either prescribe stronger or weaker med’s, depending on what they think of after evaluating him.

    The road to recovery is going to be a long one, but were ready for it, the good and the bad, he may have lost sight in his right eye, but he has not lost any of his attitude, gotta love that, anyways, i’ll update a little later on about what the vet had to say about him.

  45. […] What’s an eye, between best friends? By Pamela, on March 18th, 2012 Before: The Pain of Puppy Love. […]

  46. Crazy story. Our yellow lab Sam had the same thing with his food. I can see how Cowboy would feel terrible after. Is there another blog explaining the outcome for Petey’s eye?

    • Pamela says:

      Yes, just type Petey in the searchbox on teh upper right and it will give you his chronology. (He’s blind in the eye, and it wanders up and the outside, looking perpetually like a red zombie eye, not attractive — nerve, muscle, and tear duct damage. but he can open and close it in sync with the other. i put eye drops in it 4 times a day)

  47. Pamela,

    oh my gosh…this reminds me of when one of my dad’s partner’s cats got stuck underneath a closing garage door (long story). we didn’t know it at first (my dad left the house and didn’t realize cat tried to sneak back in at last minute). we finally heard his cries and got to him as he was trying to gnaw his own leg off to free himself. Fortunately they were able to salvage his leg, but it was bad for a while. Interestingly enough, this same cat? lost an eye and half of one ear to a bad infection. Poor cat. But he survived it all and was the friendliest kitty ever.

    Dogs are loves, to be sure. But even my sweet mini poodle gets peeved if you try to get near him while he’s eating.

    My heart goes out to you and please keep us posted once the stitches start coming out.


  48. […] /* ]]> */ Reader's Favorite Scribblings (# of comments)Wasted Days and Wasted Nights (108)The pain of puppy love. (77)Dear Tim Tebow: Only You Can Save My Daughter. (77)Couples who make you want to puke. (76)My diet is […]

  49. […] miles or so–but now he watches sadly from the dining room window while Petey the one-eyed Boston terrier (the other eye removed by his good buddy Cowboy, accidentally) takes off on the leash instead. […]

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