All We Want for Christmas

We had a jovial, happy post planned for today, but the last 48 hours or so have been quite challenging at Chez Herd.  The events, however, have created a great deal of clarity for us on what really matters at Christmas.

It all started in the early morning hours of Thursday when Queen Natasha woke everyone up with that unmistakable “horka” sound meaning a dog is just about to vomit.  We didn’t worry too much about that – or the second time – or the skipped breakfast – because she seemed alert enough.  Throughout the day on Thursday, she played some, sang some, and generally seemed ok.  But late on Thursday, she became very sick and lethargic.

Christmas Eve was spent with her on IV fluids, antibiotics, and taking barium and a series of x-rays looking for blockages.  After an exhaustive day at our vet’s, she was transferred to our region’s 24 hour hospital – an hour away from the house.  As of this writing, she is about to have her last x-ray.  Based on the other x-rays, they anticipate closing out the barium test with the decision that their is no blockage.  Kidneys, liver and pancreas have all passed their appropriate tests.  No artificial toxins were found in her system and blood tests are reasonably normal.  The consensus is simply that she caught and ate something – unknown something – that severely disagreed with her system.

If all goes well, she will rejoin The Herd at some point on Christmas Day, though on a very restricted diet (chicken and rice) and antibiotics.

And thus our title for today’s post.  All of the material items for Christmas are appreciated and we are thankful for those gifts.  But, frankly, all we want for Christmas is a happy, healthy, and complete family.  Everything else is just extra.

Come home for Christmas, Natasha


  1. Sagira on December 28, 2010 at 4:12 pm

    Glad that I am reading these backwards and already know she is home and doing well. 🙂

  2. Lisa alias Sitka's Mom on December 27, 2010 at 8:26 pm

    I know this is a bit late but I just got a chance to read about Natasha & was so thankful that she is doing well. What a scare for all of you!!!
    Your blog was really beautiful & I hope your Christmas was blessed with happiness.
    Sitka’s Mom

  3. achieve1dream on December 26, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    Oh my goodness! Poor Natasha!!! I wish there was some way to explain to them that it’s not safe to eat anything that tastes good. I worry constantly that mine will find something and eat it and make themselves sick. I hope she’s home and feeling better since my comment is late. Wishing you a Merry Christmas where all of your wishes for a happy, healthy, complete family come true.

  4. Oskar on December 26, 2010 at 4:15 pm

    What a scary way to spend Christmas! We will send pawsitive prayers to Natasha.

    Nubbin wiggles,

  5. Dennis the Vizsla on December 26, 2010 at 1:32 pm

    hello queen natasha the evil its dennis the vizsla dog hay i hope yoo ar home and feeling better i wil see if their is a post after this wot sez so!!! after all sumbuddy needs to keep those other jokers in line!!! mary belayted krismas!!! ok bye

  6. Holly and Khady on December 26, 2010 at 12:52 am

    We are so glad Natasha is now feeling better and is on her way to the snowy beach! Merry Christmas to you all!

    Holly and Khady

  7. jack & moo on December 25, 2010 at 10:30 pm

    Merry Christmas, may the day find the whole herd back together. We’ll keep paws crossed she will be back to her normal royal self soon!

    jack & moo

  8. Ina in Alaska on December 25, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    Whew that is a relief it was only something the Queen ate that disagreed with her!! Next time, please call forth the Royal Taste Testers…. 😀

    So glad all is well in the Kingdom…. Merry Christmas Indeed!!!

  9. Ricky on December 25, 2010 at 10:03 pm

    We just saw this post and hope it finds Natasha home and feeling better. And we hope this turned out to be a Merry Christmas after all!

  10. 24 Paws of Love on December 25, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    We completely agree and have our Paws crossed for Natasha to come safe and well. Nothing heartbreaking than watching one of our loved ones suffer. Hope all is well. We are thinking of you and all the Herd being together on Christmas.

  11. Ice 'n Ayla on December 25, 2010 at 8:58 pm

    We hope by now yer home again, and feeling better, Natasha. It’s never any fun being sick but it’s even worse at Christmas time. Hugs and xxx’s from Ice ‘n Ayla in Dawson Creek BC Canada

  12. Boomer and Bluebelle on December 25, 2010 at 8:19 pm

    oh no!! I hope she is ok and is home now. Keeping all the paws crossed and our prayers are with you all.

  13. RADINKA on December 25, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    oh no, I cant imagine..well, actually I can, had something similar happen to both my boys once after they’d eaten a seed from a toxic plant..after a horrifying night…they both bounced back like nothing happened!! Such strong dogs, those sibes are. Pawsite thoughts are coming to you all!

  14. Clive on December 25, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    We really hope that Natasha is home again with you now and that you all got to spend the day together.

    with best wishes for Christmas from us all …
    Clive and Murray

  15. Ginger, Buddy and Shadow on December 25, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    We are sorry to learn about Natasha. Hope she is better by now and is back home.
    Wising you a healthy happy christmas.
    May the family be together again…

    wags n licks from us all

  16. Bobo and Meja on December 25, 2010 at 1:37 pm

    Paws crossed, prayers said for the Queen’s quick recovery and return to Chez Herd!

    Merry Christmas!!!

    Bobo, Meja and Mommy

  17. The Army of Four on December 25, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    Merry Christmas! We love you guys and were so happy to read the update that the Queen is HOME!!! That is the BEST!!!

  18. hisqueen on December 25, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    Dear Queen, Your minions are waiting at home for you to hurry back and rule them. Paws crossed it will be today.
    Aria and MadMax
    and their hu-mom too!!

  19. Elmo & on December 25, 2010 at 12:31 pm

    Natasha, we’re sending our best wishes to you and hope you can go home to keep the herd in check 🙂

  20. Khumbu on December 25, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    Wooo Oh no ive only just seen this post, im sorry to hear about Natasha, I hope she makes it home in time for Christmas and makes a full recoverary.
    Ive been poorly to for 3 weeks, on the chicken & pasta & antibiotics diet (dont like rice) 🙂
    Paws crossed for a complete family soon.

  21. Khyra on December 25, 2010 at 11:30 am

    Of khourse, some WISE folks may say be khareful what woo wish fur…

    Of khourse, in the khase of QNTE that is an entirely difFURent ‘experience’…

    Glad to see she’ll be regaining her throne…

    I’m not sure Q was ready to take the reigns and the football just yet…

    Khyra and Khompany in PA

  22. Scout 'n Freyja on December 25, 2010 at 11:09 am

    Sending many and many get well wishes for a speedy recovery!

    ╔═════════ ೋღ❤ღೋ ═════════╗
    ೋ❤❤❤~MERRY CHRISTMAS~❤❤❤ೋ
    ╚═════════ ೋღ❤ღೋ ═════════╝

  23. Mimi & CC Cabana on December 25, 2010 at 10:19 am

    Ain’t it the truth? Poor Natasha’s condition does put things into perspective quickly. Hope she recovers fully and quickly. And hope the rest of you enjoy a wonderful Christmas despite the malady!

  24. Terri Jacobson on December 25, 2010 at 10:17 am

    Oh man, so sorry to hear about the Queen. There is nothing worse than having a pup that is not feeling up to par, the worry alone causes more gray hair than a wild teenager.

    All of the hounds here send huge get well quick wishes to the Queen.

  25. Emma Rose on December 25, 2010 at 9:49 am

    We are sending prayers your way. Earlier comments say she is coming home. That’s a relief. We will pray for continued improvement!

    Emma Rose and The Duchess

  26. The OP Pack on December 25, 2010 at 9:36 am

    Oh, why do we do these things to our humans? We are so very glad to see from the comments that all is well. Wishes to all of you for a very happy Christmas with family.

    Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

  27. Mochi & Bali on December 25, 2010 at 9:23 am

    We just saw on FB that you’re going home!

    Merry Christmas! 🙂

    Mochi & Bali

  28. Sam on December 25, 2010 at 9:13 am

    We will keep our paws crossed! She will be okay, and your Christmas will be wonderful!


  29. Houndstooth on December 25, 2010 at 9:04 am

    Oh no! I’m so glad that it’s nothing serious! Well, more serious than it’s already been. Hopefully, Natasha is well on her way to recovery by now. It’s funny how these little moments remind us about what’s really important!

  30. Mike and Princess on December 25, 2010 at 8:51 am

    Power of the Paw!! Get well soon!!!!

  31. KB on December 25, 2010 at 8:48 am

    We are thinking of you, sending the Queen all of our positive thoughts. I hope with all my heart that she’s OK, and that she’s back with your pack today. It’s hard to be happy when one is missing…

    I know the feeling of “all I want for Christmas” – it’s how I feel this year although we’re not in the severe crisis part of K’s ordeal.

    I’ll be thinking of you today.

  32. Carolyn on December 25, 2010 at 8:43 am

    I am sure hoping by now you know you can go fetch her. Poor girl! I know she makes all wary-eyed, being the Queen and all, but she is a BELOVED Queen and that makes all the difference.

    I sure hope those storms you were concerned about stay at bay too.

  33. Eva on December 25, 2010 at 8:37 am

    I was so relieved to get to the end and see she was still alive! Long live the queen! I know she will feel much better just to get home.

  34. priscilla on December 25, 2010 at 8:19 am

    Dear Queen Natasha, we hope you’re home for Christmas by now!!!

    Merry Christmas!!!

  35. norwood on December 25, 2010 at 8:10 am

    All hail the Queen! Please return today to the herd! I promise to be good. This will be my only wish from Santa!


    PS- Okay super duper strength heeler vibes sent. I know it was just something you ate. Merry Christmas! I love my herd! and hu-parents!

  36. HoundDogMom on December 25, 2010 at 7:54 am

    Natasha, you must get better and get home for Christmas. Your herd will not be the same with their Christmas celebrations if you are under the weather. We have our paws crossed for speedy recovery for you and to make it home for Christmas Day. Keep us posted. Drool your way, The HoundDogs

  37. Wild Dingo on December 25, 2010 at 7:41 am

    OMG. Please go home for xmas Natasha. The Herd just isn’t the Herd with you in the dog-pital. Big paws and fingers crossed over this way.

    Please keep us updated. we’re anxiously waiting to hear how she is.

    hugs to the entire herd.
    loki, juno, wild dingo and mr. wild dingo

  38. Stella on December 25, 2010 at 2:27 am

    Natasha, we wish you the very best of health, we would be scared not to! We hope your day tomorrow gets you back to normal and that all will be well with you. We agree with the hu-dad about this is the most important thing. Now that our little pal Lorenza is well again, we want that for you too.


  39. rottrover on December 25, 2010 at 1:59 am

    Our paws are crossed for a Christmas homecoming. We couldn’t agree more — everything else is just extra.

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