• October 23, 2014

Burying head in the sand OK for now

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Posted: Friday, July 18, 2014 4:30 am

As the president of a mastiff rescue in Harker Heights and a dog trainer, I see a lot of problems with dogs.

Part of my passion is to help the dogs, as well as the people attached to them, and every month I share that with Herald readers.

But today, I’m going to mix it up and talk about ostriches.

I can see your puzzled expressions. Ostriches? What do ostriches have to do with dogs? Well, they have a lot to do with me and my English mastiff, Trixie.

While ostriches don’t really bury their heads in the sand, they only lay down on the sand for camouflage, the term “burying your head in the sand instead of facing a problem” is attributed to ostriches and has been my motto regarding Trixie lately.

Trixie has a growth that I’m afraid is a tumor and not the type of tumor that can be cut off and taken care of easily.

Her energy level changed; her body changed and along with other signs, it points to some not-so-good things happening. I need to take her to see the veterinarian — and I will have by the time this article publishes — but right now, for this moment, I can just bury my head and pretend she’s OK.

Have y’all ever done that? Put off the inevitable as long as possible?

It doesn’t help, doesn’t make things easier, but it sure does keep the week from sucking a little bit longer.

I’ve been putting off her appointment, telling myself she will get better and that it’s nothing bad and it will pass.

My gut, on the other hand, gnaws at me and tells me I’m wrong and need to get her in to see someone.

My gut doesn’t sit quietly while I procrastinate.

That only leads me to believe ostriches do not have a gut because sticking their head in the sand or even near the ground could not be effective with a gut nagging them the entire time.

So what has Trixie been doing during the last few days while my head is buried and my gut is gnawing at me?

Napping! You read that right. She’s been napping — a lot. Even more than usual, which is one of the reasons why I think something is wrong. She’s gone from sleeping 18 hours a day to sleeping 23 hours a day. I am not kidding about that. Sometimes I wake her up to go potty and she walks outside and lays down to go back to sleep.

So why am I putting off the vet visit? She’s my soul mate. I adore her, and it’s one of those things I don’t know how I’ll handle if her body is ravaged with something bad.

Even now, I can’t type the “C” word. I have numerous human friends fighting the “Big C” and they are strong, amazing people in a fight for their life and they know what they are up against.

How do you tell a dog what they are riddled with?

So for another day or two, I’m an ostrich.

Kathryn Leisinger is the “Dean” of Wags and a Herald correspondent.

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