It started out with hearing Duke yelp followed by him running into the house with a trail of blood behind him.

Then there was Garry holding him down while I try to find the bandages, cleanser, and tape. Me, cleaning the wound. Bandages. I didn’t shave the fur off because I didn’t have equipment to do it and he was bleeding. I slathered the wound with antibiotic ointment. I believe in antibiotic ointment. It has been a life saver for various injuries in humans and dogs.

It looks like Duke was shot with a pellet gun, or maybe a strong be-bee gun. Garry thinks maybe there’s something in the yard on which he stabbed himself. I know someone shot Bonnie when she was younger. She still has the pellet under her skin, so I have reason to be suspicious that the same people did it again.

The hole in Duke’s leg looks clean. Is is a very neat, round hole.

I’d blame my neighbors, but I can’t prove it. At least in this house, suspicion isn’t proof.

I got so upset by Duke’s wound — he’s hopping around on three legs — I went into a cleaning fit. Not the normal type where you clean things you usually clean. This is the one where I clean all the stuff I usually ignore.  The corners where the dust hides. Pictures and frames. The book-case. Dolls in the hallway. All the parts of the vacuum cleaner that aren’t part of the standard dust bin.

Then, I cleaned the stairs because we are getting the stair climber chair and I’d like to not have a lot of dirt trapped under the rail. And Garry swept the remaining leaves off the deck, leaving it “winter ready.”

The deck, officially ready for winter

Meanwhile, the second (double) layer in my bathroom window fell out. No one can figure out how to put it back and it’s possible there is no way to do it. Which leaves me with a single glass window in the half bath, rather than the double-hung windows we have in the rest of the house. Recognizing it was going to suck all the warm air out, and in my continuing effort to lower the oncoming chill level, I bought insulated curtains for the room.

You would be amazed at how hard it is to find insulated curtains for a bathroom. I finally found a set designed for a child’s bedroom. They are too long … nothing is short enough for 36-inch windows. They arrived today … which is when I realized I can’t reach the curtain rod without a ladder. I will have to wait for the Tall Son to give me his hands. I recognized I have passed my time for climbing ladders.

I am tired. On the positive side, there are places in my house that are cleaner than they’ve been in years and which haven’t been clean since my last mental crash. Cleaning isn’t everyone’s response to problems, but it makes me feel better. At least I’m doing something that needs to be done. Cleaning is the last truly mindless activity in my world.

I just took the bandages off and it looks good. No more bleeding and he’s walking better. I’m pretty sure that all that tape sticking to his fur was bothering him as much as anything else. I left the bandage off and put on a lot more antibiotic cream. I’ll take a new look at it in the morning.

What a day.

Author: Marilyn Armstrong

Writer, photography, blogger. Previously, technical writer. I am retired and delighted to be so. May I live long and write frequently.


  1. I am glad Duke is not badly hurt but what an awful day. I know what you mean about cleaning too. When David was in hospital I often found myself cleaning when I was stressed. It’s a way to avoid thinking about things that upset you for a while, just keep busy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And end up with something positive, namely parts of your house that are absolutely cleaner. Maybe I need more stress to get into the right mental state? Duke did some leaping this morning, but he’s back to limping, so I think for one more day, NO flying dog.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Bonnie was shot, though I don’t know when. But she has the pellet under her coat. Since it doesn’t bother her, we leave it there. It had to be here because we’ve had her since she was 10 weeks old. Someone shot her. People have too many guns and it’s hunting season. Kids have these air guns, pellet guns, BB guns — and they don’t even think they are “real” guns. Idiots. Them AND their jackass parents.

          Liked by 2 people

        1. I thought I’d get at least ONE more day of him quietly limping around, but by dawn, he was leaping the gates and dragging empty bottles in through the doggy door. Where he’s getting the bottles, I’m really curious to know.

          Liked by 3 people

          1. those crazy neighbors? Would they throw something to purposely harm any one of your dogs? Geez, Marilyn. These sound like the neighbors from hell.


  2. We lost a beautiful, soft-as-butter German Shepherd to an idiot with a BB gun… the pellet went in through her ear and left her fitting and dangerous. I hope Duke is okay.
    (I’m with you on the cleaning and ladders too…)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I didn’t even KNOW when Bonnie got hit, only that the vet found the pellet. I think kids believe a BB doesn’t count, that’s it’s not a “real” injury. But wounds fester.

      I was glad this seemed to be a clean hole, with no evidence of anything left behind. If it were a normal tear, it wouldn’t have been perfectly round like that. But he seems pretty peppy this morning, limp and all. He’s got a lot of energy until he notices … “Hey, that hurts!” and he slows down.

      Guns. You really can’t trust humans with guns, even a stupid BB gun.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. We had a BB rifle we used to shoot paper plates. I let Owen take it away with him when he moved out. I never used it anyway and I don’t LIKE guns. Even fake ones. Even water guns. Over the years, I’ve just lost all my patience with guns and gun owners and all the excuses they use to have them. Unless you live in the wilds of northern Canada or some other place where actual wild beasts might attack you, or you genuinely need to hunt for food, I don’t see any legitimate reason for guns.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. We lived in a rural area and kept stock… there was a need, though we never had to use them, we still knew how. I liked the precision of it… but I would not ‘play’ with a gun. They do damage, no matter how careful you are..

            Liked by 1 person

    2. Sue, as Marilyn was cleaning Duke’s wound, he was cradled between us on the love seat. Marilyn kept telling me to hold him firmly so she could finish. Duke kept thrashing AGAINST my sore left arm. Not a pretty scene.

      Duke appears better today. My left arm?? Still pretty sore.


      1. Oh dear… Ani (who is NOT a small dog, by any stretch of the imagination ans in spite of her protestations to the contrary) likes to wake me up by walking straight up my sleeping body. Their paws arre no respecter of persons….

        I hope you are both feeling a bit better tomorrow!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. oh the poor little fella. I cannot imagine why anyone would shoot a gun at a puppy, for any reason, and even moreso, in their own yard. It’s like taking a bead on someone in their own kitchen. And it isnt as if you live in close quarters with your neighbors…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No, it isn’t. But of course, it could be any kid wandering by. While these are private lands, they are technically open for hunting and it’s definitely deer hunting season. Maybe some of the birds too, I’m not sure. So there are a lot people wandering around with guns including idiot kids.

      There are a lot of very mean kids. I try not to think about it, but we wonder how come there’s so much bullying in school? This IS why.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. The Kutani bowl was a gift from my cousin Ray Lee, who married my cousin Roberta (the sociologist). She and I have followed amusingly parallel paths in life, but she’s done much better with money than we have. Ray and Garry are so much alike, it’s almost funny. I remember Berta telling me she thought it was a Chinese thing, and I said no, it’s a guy thing. In fact, there are at least four women I know and we all seem to be married to one man — discounting other talents, of course.

      And now, they are all a bit cranky and say “Oy” a lot. Do all older men sound Jewish?

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Good to know he’s better. I clean when I’m in pain, the more pain, the more I clean. Always been that way. Regarding the dear pooch, I certainly hope you resolve what happened. Since you know what a pellet can do, you’d know whether it was the same type of injury. I’m not given to vengeance but I certainly feel vengeful toward your neighbours, not only for this possible incident but the other one too. GRRRR


    1. It is a bad thing to go to war with neighbors, especially when you are in no position to move. It is possible it was accidental, too because the woods are FULL of assholes with every type of gun. Hunting season, you know. I hear rifles going off all times of day and night and wonder why in the world they have to shoot so close to our homes. There’s more than enough room to keep everyone safe. But a lot of people with guns aren’t even thinking about collateral damage, dogs, children, homes, cars, cows … they ALL get shot. Sometimes lethally. So all things considered, it could have been worth … and since I can’t prove it, I’m not going to war over something for which i have no proof. Call me crazy, but …

      Wars with neighbors can get very ugly and do so very quickly. And the dogs will get the worst of it.


      1. True on all counts. I forgot you’d mentioned hunting season and others with guns. Your’e also right, can’t prove it, so not worth it in the long run. Yes the dogs would get the worst of it. It’s a shame that there are people so thoughtlessly cruel.


        1. And also, so stupidly thoughtless. The parents who buy their kids pellet guns, air guns, BB guns and just let them loose without bothering to teach them that these ARE real guns. Not rifles, but definitely guns.


            1. And don’t forget to mention that they are really GUNS and they can really hurt animals and even kill small ones … and occasionally big ones by infection. I swear a lot of kids don’t even realize their “little weapons” can cause serious injury.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Yes, I’m pretty sure that in some cases that’s the way of it. People don’t think things through enough about what they are giving their kids. Even adults don’t get the results of shooting something or someone. I personally believe it is due to gratuitous violence on tv. The next episode they’re up and running around as though nothing happened which is not the case.

                Liked by 1 person

  5. Poor dog. Poor Marilyn. Before we moved, our prior neighbor’s kid had a BB gun which he and his friend shot off in the postage-stamp sized back yard. It would have been a matter of time before Cody got shot. Just one of the many reasons we left.

    As for the curtains – I had the devil of a time finding a curtain to fit the window of the outside door at our new house. I finally just had hubby hang the rod higher than normal so I wouldn’t have to hem. But the new bathtub was another issue. I had to un-hem our existing shower curtain because the rod is higher in the new house – and then discovered I couldn’t hang it without a step ladder. That’s going to be a pain.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve never been good with ladders, but now I’m so shaky I think it’s a really BAD idea. And while Garry could do it, Garry has never gotten a grip on what you do with a curtain rod and/or curtains. That whole “slide it through the slot … no, not that one, the other one … push it over to the end … no really, it’ll go, just scrunch it all up … Oh never mind.” He likes an attractive home, but that is definitely MY job.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I am glad that Duke is recovering. It is always a shock when something like that happens. Few of us like cleaning, but I no longer have so much Energy. I have overcome the problem with a plan. I prefer taking small regular steps than one big step now and again, just not too much at once.


    1. I was just angry and needed to do something, so it was cleaning. Not surprisingly, I’m totally exhausted today … but Duke is Just Fine and jumping all over the places. I think the other dogs are going to start limping. It looks like a find way to get other treats. But Duke’s wound closed up nicely. I cleaned all the blood off him last night. I was amazed at how quickly that hole closed. It was a pretty big hole, too. Young creatures are so strong.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. poor poor thing. I am a firm believer in antibiotic cream and ointment and use it religiously!! I clean when I am upset too- it’s great therapy and I always feel a real sense of accomplishment knowing everything is sparkling!!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Sorry to hear all of that but glad at least one of you is feeling almost back to their ‘old’ self! ;-). I imagine the season will ( excuse the pun) die off real soon and you can settle in for a safer winter season that hopefully won’t be too cold for too long.

    It would probably take something like that to get me into action and clean up the house a bit…. except i don’t have any pets currently… phew! that was close! 😉

    Liked by 2 people

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