The good news is after her operation Dog is much happier and the cone of doom came off today! I tried to take it off two days ago but she immediately started licking her wound so back on it went. The incision in her paw looks nice and dry and, as far as I can see, isn’t infected or inflamed.
This is wholly due, of course, to my patient administrations in the form of Ms Veterinary Nurse. When we collected Dog after the surgery I was presented with a pack of syringes with horrifyingly massive needles, a box of gauze, and a saline solution in what looked like an IV bag. Oh, and a whole pile of rubber gloves. (Are you even human if you don’t put these on without pinging them with a suggestive wink at your partner?)
The idea was I had to sluice Dog’s paw down morning and night with the saline, using the syringe to forcefully squirt the liquid into her incision. (I am consciously not using ‘hole’ here)
Within a couple of days Dog was so used to this whenever I snapped on my rubber gloves she would patiently curl up on her bean bag and stretch forward the affected paw for me to clean. What a clever dog!
Dog ready for her paw clean
All was going well until the day of Bad News. I was kneeling (in shorts) in front of Dog with saline filled syringe and gauze in my hands. I pulled the cap off the needle and prepared to part Dog’s toes to find the incision. Usually she’s very calm, but this time she pulled her paw back and the syringe went flying out of my hand.
It landed. Point down. In my knee.
It was actually quite comic, and even as I was screaming in pain a part of me was wishing my phone was nearer so I could take a picture of it for the next blog post.
It didn’t even fall off – it just stuck there like that scene from Pulp Fiction.
I pulled it out with a wince, and got back to washing Dog’s paw. How brave am I? I was fine until I went into the kitchen to wash my hands and told Rob what had happened. He looked at me in horror and that’s when I realised blood was absolutely pouring down my leg. God knows what I had done, I must have caught a vein. It’s a shame I could only find this teeney tiny plaster to put on the wound as it doesn’t look at all impressive.
But the next day I was quite pleased to see this bruise appear which I could show people in order to elicit gasps of horror and sympathy.
Later that day disaster struck again when I was making lunch. The children are driving me mad because they are used to getting lovely, three course lunches when at school. I am used to a ham roll or skipping lunch altogether. What this means is they are nagging me constantly, repeatedly asking, ‘What’s for lunch? What’s for lunch?’ from around five past 11 in the morning.
We have a very old, knackered Rayburn and in this summer heat it is unbearable to have on all the time so we switch it off and have been going out a lot or making do with salads. Unfortunately we had nothing to eat in the house except pasta and a pour over sauce. (Not quite a three course hoopla but better than the ‘just sandwiches?’ at which they had turned up their noses the day before.)
Half an hour later the oven was still ice cold, despite being turned up to 9. I found Rob and asked him to come and have a look. Sighing extravagantly he put down his Very Important Work from Home stuff he was doing, and discovered the pilot light had gone out.
Now this is the problem. I thought I’d made very clear to Rob I had turned on the oven half an hour ago and it had not warmed up. He argues this was not the case.
I’m not sure why, but the upshot was as Rob lit his third match to relight the pilot light, a giant ball of flames exploded out of the oven, straight into his face.
I knew he was OK, thank goodness, because he immediately started swearing at me for turning the oven on while he was lighting the pilot light. (I hadn’t. As I told him, I had turned it on half an hour ago).
I dragged Rob to the sink to run cold water and check him over. ‘Is my face OK?’ he kept asking, as if he was a top model whose looks were insured for millions.
‘You’re fine,’ I replied, breathing through my mouth because all I could smell was burned hair.
Once we had both calmed down and inspected the damage is wasn’t too bad. Rob had a nasty blister on his hand (the one which was holding the match), the top half of his chest hair had singed off, as had the hair down his left arm and all the hairs on his left knee cap. For some reason the hairless kneecap bothered him more than anything else.
It turned out it was something to do with a thermo coupling doo dah, and you shouldn’t light the pilot when oven is on etc, but all fixed now. The good news is it has inspired me to write a post entitled ’20 Ways my Husband and my Dad have nearly Killed Themselves’ which I will start soon – I will be interviewing my Dad this weekend. Also, the fireball incident led to me getting one of my favourite ever texts from Rob.
Summer Ready Feet
(Be warned, some gross pictures of feet here. Stop reading if you are squeamish)
Finally, I want to recommend something that will revolutionise your life – well your feet – this summer. If you’re anything like me, ie old and walked many miles in this life, you may have a build up of hard skin on your feet which never really disappears no matter how many pedicures you have, or how often you tackle it with those weird sandpaper machines. (I’ve even tried the carnivorous fish)
Well, Warriors, fret no more about the state of your feet as I have the solution. I first discovered it last year and have done it again this year. It’s marvellous.
The sun is out, it’s time to chuck away my socks, boots, tights and closed toed courts and get out the sandals. But, horrors, my feet look like trotters. (That’s what Rob calls my feet. Rude). Even the tops of my toes have a scaly carapace of dry, hard skin. Yuk. Time to log onto Amazon to order another lot of BABY FOOT! *
Oh My God this stuff is amazing. Check you are OK to use it, not diabetic etc, read the list of contraindications before you begin, obvs.
This pack contains two plastic bootees filled with a nice smelling gel. You strap them to your feet, squish your toes around in it for a bit, put socks over the top to keep it all tight and then sit down for an hour. That’s it. Then wait five days – sometimes six – it can take a while to work.
Just when you think, ‘nothing is happening, what is wrong with the woman, this stuff is crap…’ THIS HAPPENS!
Yes, great shed loads of hard, dry skin just fall off. This is my foot about six days after using the bootee things. And this picture shows my foot towards the end of the process, about three days later. You can see some of the dead skin still needs to peel off (the arch and top always take the longest as they don’t get so much wear) but look at that lovely, soft, new, pink skin coming through.
It doesn’t hurt AT ALL. They advise you not to actively peel off the dead skin, just let it slough off, but I can’t ever resist helping little bits come away. Oooh the satisfaction when you get a whole sheet come away from your scaly old heel! That’s when it can hurt as you can get over eager to get the skin off, but if you left it alone it will just come away without any pain. My feet feel lovely now.
My family loathe it when I do this, but that’s because I keep leaving flakes of skin in little piles around the house, but due to their constant complaints I now gather them up and put them into an old crisp packet before chucking in the bin.
For some reason this always reminds me of Margaret Attwood’s early novel Surfacing, in which I vividly remember a character peeling skin off her feet and eating it. I don’t eat my skin, I hasten to add – I’m not that gross.
Anyway, I highly recommend Baby Foot if your feet are a bit gnarly. Give it a go and let me know what you think!
I’m off to my mother’s this week and then driving down to Italy the following Thursday. I can’t wait, but we are taking my mother-in-law, so I am sure it will be interesting, and I will let you know how I get on.
I hope you are loving the sunshine, enjoy it while it lasts, but drink plenty of water and keep your curtains closed during the day.
- Just so you know, if you click this link and go on to buy Baby Foot, I’ll get a little commission.