Waiting Time

by Rubin the Labradoodle

My friend Max is still in the hospital. I’m trying to see this as a hopeful sign, but living in this place of waiting and wondering is not easy for a Doodle like myself. I like to move forward. I like to know the answers. I like to believe that all is right in the world and that the only worry is whether or not it will rain.

But for the past week, this has not been my reality. Instead, we’ve been in limbo (or perhaps purgatory) caught between two different possibilities — Max as a healthy, recovering dog or Max as an unhealthy, declining dog.

All my hope is in the first possibility, but my hope (and the prayers and well wishes of others) can’t seem to change the reality. Max is suspended between getting better and getting worse and I think that’s probably the worst possible place to be not only for us, but for him.

But last night, as I drifted off to sleep — my final prayers being for Max’s recovery — my sleepy mind wandered back to the vision of Max’s white buffalo silhouette perched on the side of large mountain overlooking a valley of sheep flocked together under a full, bright moon.

I’m not sure why I find this vision comforting because even if (when) Max fully recovers, it’s hard to say if this will be his reality. Sure, I’d like to think it would be, but chances are he’ll find a forever family who doesn’t live on a mountain, doesn’t have a flock of sheep, and doesn’t live in a perpetual moonlit night.

Still it’s the comfort I hold onto in this waiting time; the comfort of knowing Max will walk pain free, fulfill his nature of being a protector, and find a purpose in his life other than spending all his energy on getting healthier.

Currently, we are waiting for results on the many tests the doctor ordered. We did receive news back from Max’s skin tests, which show four different systemic skin infections, which once again indicate a severely compromised immune system and chronic stress. His infections are clearing up with the multiple medications, but still we wait for more answers to the puzzle of Max.

None of the current test results, for instance, explain the lack of muscle development and front body weakness and pain. Perhaps the remainder of the tests will provide more of an insight, but for now, as Max’s long-term foster Mom says, Max remains an enigma.

The biggest news is that Max is eating. The doctor changed up his medications and added a few others and the new combination has helped Max regain his appetite. This is a good sign allowing Max to keep up his strength as he battles through whatever it is he’s battling through.

And so we wait. For now, Max is pain-free, eating, and in very competent and loving hands.

As much as I hate living in this waiting time, I am holding onto hope with all four paws and every night, when I close my eyes, I hold that vision of a strong, healthy Max guarding the stars and sheep — his head held high and his white coat aglow in the bright light of his future.

Until tomorrow,


PS – None of the photos on today’s blog are new. We’re hoping to see Max soon, report back to all who are cheering for him, and provide new photos so everyone can see that the gentle giant appreciates all of your well-wishes and prayers. In the meantime, we tried to include photos that show just how handsome, optimistic, and hopeful Max can be in walking, eating, and yes, resting.

One Reply to “Waiting Time”

  1. I learned about max when I called about adopting him. In researching water therapy I found your website and there was Max. Glad to hear he is eating and there a few pieces falling into place. We adopted a dog two years ago that had been run over by a truck and stuck under a hot engine block with 3rd degree burns. He was in the vet clinic for 15 months and we have done several surgeries since he came to us to finally heal the wounds. He is now a happy health dog with a Donald Trump combover on one side to cover the burn scars. May peace be with Max and all of you who are helping him. Also I really appreciate your postings.

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