Cooper Says "Sock It To Me."

Cooper hiding in shame?

Barb and I were entertaining two of our granddaughters over the past week while their parents enjoyed a much-deserved 10th-anniversary trip. Is it any surprise I wound up sitting outside an emergency room at 11:30 Friday night?

No, nothing happened to our precious granddaughter cargo. And fortunately, neither Barb nor I were stricken with a relapse or complications from last month’s COVID cases. I was slumped in my car in the parking lot of the 24-hour Veterinary Specialty Clinic waiting for news on the health of Cooper, our indefatigable labradoodle.

The babysitting gig was actually going quite well. Barb had just treated the gals to an in-home spa night, with shampoos and blow-drys. Cooper and I were watching Only Murders in the Building in the home office when he bolted out the door and into the bathroom, where the girl’s clothes were still in their pre-bath pile on the floor.

And the fun began. He rooted through the clothes until he found a favorite –a freshly worn sock. In a blur, the sock was in his mouth, and Cooper’s favorite game of “Catch Me and See If You Can Get This Away From Me” was on.

I chased the Coop dog through the bedroom, through the family room, and back into the office where at last I cornered him. The gleam in his eye said it all. “Socks? I don’t have to show you no stinking socks,” he seemed to be saying.

I gripped his mouth and pulled his jaws apart, but I already had a sinking feeling. No sock. And after a brief discussion with Barb over the appropriate next course of action (per usual, she was right, and I was wrong) Cooper and I were speeding off to the 24-hour vet.

Like a human ER, the veterinary ER is a busy place on a Friday night. I pulled into the parking lot and followed the posted registration procedures. This put Cooper 10th on the waiting list, with an approximate time before he would see the vet of 3 hours 40 minutes.

So we settled in to wait. I lowered the back of my seat and made a pillow out of cloth grocery bags. I tuned the radio to The Drive for the replay of Bob Stroud’s 10 at 10. Geddy Lee’s birthday–who knew there were 10 songs by Rush I actually liked?

At the end of the first hour, a tech took Cooper inside and I soon received a phone call asking for permission to give Cooper an IV medication to induce vomiting. Sure–whatever it takes.

And about 45 minutes later, I got the news. Success! Cooper had barfed up a sock. “We’ll be bringing Cooper out to you in a few minutes. Would you like the sock back?” You can guess my answer to that one.

Yes, I am sorry to say that one of our granddaughters was returned to her very relaxed parents the next day shy one pair of socks. And as for Cooper? Did he learn a lesson? He seems to have enjoyed every moment of his experience. And he still hasn’t met a sock that might not make a tasty morsel.


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