Greetings blog aficionados. Frodo here for your reading pleasure today. And I must confess, it IS a pleasure.

As most of you know, I celebrated a dozen birthdays this past January. Twelve is a fairly “popular” number – there are 12 months in a year, 12 hours on the face of a clock, 12 signs of the Zodiac and apparently, 12 jurors in a trial. Not that I have thankfully ever been to court. There are also numerous biblical references to the number 12. So suffice to say, 12 is a good number.

As many of you readers will also recall, several years ago, while undergoing surgery for removal of a cyst, my veterinarian noted for the first time, that I had a heart murmur. The cyst turned out fine, but this incidental cardiac finding sent me to a cardiologist. I won’t bore you with the technicalities of that appointment, but at that time (and this was several years ago now), the cardiologist and Her Highness decided that the best course of treatment for yours truly was pharmaceutical. There WAS an option for cardiac surgery, BUT while it could have potentially solved one cardiac issue that I have, it would not have solved a second issue I have. And the risks of surgery were iffy. At the time, the cardiologist asked Her Highness what the average lifespan for a PON would be. She said there is a range from probably 12-14 years IF one is lucky. Sadly, some PONs, like Viktor are taken too early, and some live long, happy lives to 15. And some even longer! The cardiologist asked Her Highness if she would be “happy” with 12. Given that it was several years off, and the fact that of the 6 dogs she had previously been owned by, only one had lived past 12, she thought that number was OK. I mean let’s face it – no time is EVER enough- but 12 seemed like a gift.

So when I celebrated my silk anniversary in January, Her Highness was thrilled. BUT, like anyone owned by a canine knows, the older a canine gets, the more the human worries. And honestly, she now felt 12 wasn’t enough. No wonder she is on blood pressure medication.

Frankly, I feel fine. I have as much energy as I have ever had. I don’t tire on walks, my appetite is extraordinary (as always), I “eliminate” in regular fashion, and IF Her Highness didn’t know I had a heart condition, she wouldn’t think about my health at all. I DO have some rather large fatty cysts, often found in seasoned dogs(I like that term better than senior)- but they don’t bother me. I went in to the Vet in the fall for a heart check and all was as it was several years ago. No worse. However, a few weeks ago, Her Highness discovered a rather odd dark lump on my back. It almost appeared to be like a blood blister – which would not be unlikely given that the Imp is still rather mouthy when we wrestle. In addition, I was still clearly battling a goopy ear – so she made an appointment to see our Vet.

Now PONs don’t forget much, so my recollection of the orb incident and subsequent problems after that fiasco, make me a tad nervous when I walk in the Vet Clinic. Her Highness kept me in the car as long as possible and then dragged me in. She did that because once I’m in, she must ply me with a continual supply of treats to keep me from either squeaking or barking. I have her well trained.

Our Vet is lovely and she is very patient with Her Highness who asks about 500 questions- while simultaneously feeding me treats. The Vet looked at my lump – and another one she found (which surprisingly Her Highness didn’t notice while grooming me the day before). Could possibly be because our grooming sessions still resemble a WWF match. Our Vet suggested she aspirate the lumps and she suggested routine bloodwork- which I had not had in several years. She took me to “ the back room” away from the pestering eyes of Her Highness.

So now – after all this dramatic build up – the results…… The rather ominous looking lumps were cysts. Goopy cysts. And my blood work came back yesterday, with absolutely nothing to report. Well – one MINOR thing – my cholesterol was a bit elevated. Just as it was in my last blood work several years ago. She suggested I lay off the doughnuts. A comedian she is not.

So. I am apparently doing as well as a 12.4 year old dog can be doing. Actually, perhaps a bit above the norm. Especially given the fact that I DO have a heart condition. Remember, I even got two legs toward my Rally Masters title in January- which included jumping. I think I’m doing splendid.

To say Her Highness was thrilled with my check up is an understatement. Not to say she won’t continue to watch me like some research experiment- and she’ll check me each time I so much as sneeze, but her blood pressure DID go down a bit yesterday.

No one knows how much time they have on this “vacation” called life. One can sit and worry about all sorts of things – including when the vacation will end. Instead – we need to enjoy each and every moment – and not take that for granted. Fetch the ball. Learn a new trick. Have fun with family and friends. Go on an adventure (even around the block). Eat the carbs – but watch your cholesterol. Explore the world around you. Smell the air. Pee on the neighbors’ garbage can. OK – maybe not that one. But Carpe diem my friends. Carpe diem.

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

2 thoughts on “12+

  1. Nice to hear your check up went well. Hears to a few more years of fun and games. Krystal is 12 this week and recovering from a knee op. They said she has very good bones and blood test ok. So another plucky PON


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