Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Attack of the Porcupine

Disclaimer: I know my photos are nothing spectacular, but these are even worse. I forgot my camera and was forced to use the ole iPhone. My apologies.

The Canadian comes from a close knit group of boys. They have all been friends since first grade (pronounced Grade One in Canada). The stories they tell and the mischief they caused is the stuff legends are made of. To this day they are all very close. 

They have each others back. 
Come hell or high water. 
Come rain or come shine. 

Jackson is one of those boys. Jackson is a man's man. He's tough as nails and sweet as pie. He has a roommate and they have two dogs; Mook, the husky, and Wylie, the black lab. Wylie gives labs a good name. She is the kind of dog that makes people want to go out and get their very own black lab.

But, every now and then she finds herself in a pickle. Mook, well, Mook finds himself in a pickle almost everyday. He's another story for another time...

Anyway, the Canadian and I were sitting around not doing much of anything when the phone rang. It was Jackson wanting to know if The Canadian could come over and give him a hand while he pulled porcupine quills out of Wylie's mouth. Is this normal around here? Unfazed, The Canadian told him that he'd be right over. I invited myself along for moral support. Besides, I've never seen a dog that has been in a scuffle with a porcupine. No way was I missing this fun adventure. Although, secretly, in my crazy brain I was playing out all the horrible things that could happen - getting mauled, being bitten, sliding on black ice...the list goes on.

But, alas, none of these things happened. 

When we got there Wylie had her head and tail down. Mook was being himself. He's quite the singer and demands your attention.

During college (Canadian translation: University), I worked at a vet's office. We didn't use rusty tools at the vet, but since it was late and Jackson lives on the outskirts of town (hence the porcupine) you make do with whatcha got. These tools did the trick, too.

 He had already removed these quills from Wylie's paws and face. The ones we needed to get out were in her gums and tongue.

Porcupine quills are no laughing matter. The ends are covered in teeny-tiny barbs that hold the quill in there nice and tight.

Quills also break easily. When you pull them out you have to be careful not to snap them or else the bottom of the quill will sink deep into the tissue and wreak havoc.

You have to pull them out nice and slooooooow.

Wylie was being a trooper. She didn't bite. She cried a little, but for the most part she was good. She knew we were helping her. PS. I use the term 'we' very loosely.

She just didn't want to hold her tongue still so the boys could get the last quill out. It was way in the back and hard to reach.

Meanwhile, Mook kept right on singing. I think it was his way of offering support and sympathy. After all, he has had two run-ins with porcupines. Both of which resulted in surgical removal because he wouldn't hold still. It's how Mook rolls.

Finally, Wylie was back on her feet and wagging her tail. Quill free!

I wish I had a photo of all the quills at the end, but I forgot. Look at the photo above and double it. That should be about right.

Oh yeah, this is how cold it was last night. I'm not sure what the Fahrenheit conversion is, but its damn cold.

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