She has a full wardrobe, gets her chicken treats in the morning and sleeps in our bed at night.
She is allowed up on the furniture, uses the outdoor "facilities" during the day and has a potty paper upstairs to use at her discretion in the evenings.
Lue is going to be eight years young this year. Although, we have found her to be a bit of an old soul from the start. If Luella were a human, she'd play bridge, drink dirty martinis, curse like a long shoreman and (quite possibly) smoke.
She has her vices.
Historically, Lue has gone to the fancy vet in the city every year for her checkups. I like this particular vet because they do blood work before dental cleanings to make sure Lue can handle the anesthesia. During the dental, Lue is fully intubated and receiving fluids to quickly flush the drugs out of her teeny system.
Hundreds of dollars later, I have peace of mind and Lulu's teeth are clean.
I have yet to find such a vet in Highland Park - not because one does not exist, but because I keep making appointments in the city and then canceling them because I work and spending four hours taking Lue to the vet isn't feasible.
Here's a tip, I am rarely realistic. Most of the time, I deliver on my overreaching overachieverness. Sometimes ... not so much.
It's a vicious cycle, much like the one my hair is experiencing right now because my colorist is in the city and I actually can't find ANYONE in Highland Park that can highlight me like Tracy. I look like hell.
Luella's last cleaning was shockingly only as recent as May 2010. Unfortunately, I have brushed her little pearls maybe ten to fifteen times since Mairin was born. Her teeth are so dirty and A FEW ON THE BOTTOM ARE LOOSE!
I feel so guilty. I am the worst dog mom ever. I have sacrificed the dental health of my very first baby for lack of time and attention. I have sacrificed Lue's adorable little teeth for my other children.
It's not the only notable difference for Luella from B.K. (before kids) to A.K. (after kids). Lue waits longer than ever between trips outside. She is ignored for a spell during the day and gets bounced around at night when the little sisters meander into our bed.
On the bright side ( and because the prospect of rotting dog teeth should have a silver lining) she islearning to hang with the squad in situations where she should have normally slunk off to bed midday.
For example, visiting my inlaws this past weekend, a friend was first to the party with her six and eight year-old boys. No less than four minutes into the visit, I heard the older boy say, "Look mom! I finally caught him!" As I turned in movie-slow-motion, I saw a blur of black and tan fur and grey and pink argyle sweater vest (yes, Lue's) leap from the boys arms and tumble to the hardwood floor head first.
I freaked out, snatched up poor Lue and ran out of the room. She was fine, but so scared that she pooped all over me. The only clean shirt I had left was a loungy pyjama top. Out of choices, I sucked it up and rejoined the group as other guests began to arrive.
Lue sucked it up too. She jumped back into the fray immediately, barking at the kids and mingling with with the crowd, hopeful that bits of barbeque would fall from a plate or two down to her domain.
This behavior is atypical for Ms. Luella. Both Ryan and I were proud at her newly-found resilience.
I convinced myself that Yorkie teeth are notoriously bad and that no matter how much I brush, they will become harder to maintain as she ages. I also decided that rehabilitating what was once a painfully shy little dog is more important and that I'm not such a bad dog mom after all.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
We'll see what our new vet has to say about it. We have an appointment with the Highland Park vet at noon.