Saturday, August 23, 2008

Blood and Milk

"So," I said out loud to myself. "I'm mopping up blood at six o'clock in the morning." Poor Henry woke up this morning with a nosebleed. Like with people, it's not terribly serious, but there's just so much blood that it looks like a crime scene. As Michael whisked Henry off to the emergency animal hospital, I did what I always do in a crisis. I cleaned. I find the smell of 409 strangely comforting in times of trouble.

I don't come in contact with blood very often. Sometimes I cut myself shaving or lose control of a serrated knife while trying to saw cans in half or slice tomatoes. And I most certainly do not see buckets of dog blood spilled across the house all that often. A guy in a bar once told me that the only two words that exist in every known language are blood and milk. It's bar information, so who knows if it's true. But I always thought Blood and Milk would make a good title for something.

Henry is home now and resting comfortably. But then, he's always resting comfortably. I tossed the bloody stair treads into the washing machine. I searched the world over for those treads, so that Henry could climb easily up and down the stairs. I moved his fan, so I could spray his rug with cleaner. He likes to sleep with a fan positioned just right on the floor, so he can move around and cool off whatever needs cooling. And the rug is there because he had a hard time getting his bulk up off the hardwood floors.

So add "blood mopping" to the list of things I never thought I would do for a pet. Once my last childhood pet died, I swore I'd never have another. So here I am. Watching his every move, monitoring his breath. Clutching a bottle of 409 and my breaking heart.

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