Coming into this whole situation as a dog virgin, one of the most interesting things I’ve observed is that dogs really and truly have friends. It’s not a questionable theory. It’s not a hunch. It’s not a guess.

When a dog has a friend it’s as obvious as the nose on the face and the tail wagging happily off the rear. And once they’re friends, things really don’t change. It could be months and months without a meeting and then, BAM, it’s happy hour once again. The bond endures.

Stella has a number of good friends. As long as it’s off leash and there’s a hundred acre park, she’s fun at a party. Over time, if we begin to go to a place regularly Stella becomes well known and mostly well liked.

Friends can fall into different categories. There are acquaintances she knows but doesn’t hang with. There are good friends that she greets wholeheartedly but doesn’t play with (they’re not suitably matched in age or skill.) And there are other good friends that she does play with.

I personally was never was a believer in “best friends.” I’ve always thought that friends are different and there’s no one “best.” It all seemed pretty grammar school to me to have a best friend. Even when I was in grammar school it felt very grammar school.

But Stella believes otherwise and seems to have found herself a BFF in the form of a petite brown and white parti poodle. You could say “liver treats”, “let’s go for a thousand mile run in the park” or “dinner!!!” and you get zero reaction from Ms. Stella. But just say her BFF’s name, “Mia” and Stella’s face lights up like she’d just landed in a butcher shop with no butcher in sight.

Even more interesting is the relationship you develop with your BFF’s owner. I’ve been told it’s a lot like kids: you hope and pray that the parents’ of your kid’s BFF are people you like to hang out with. Otherwise you’re stuck with them, much like the classic horrible in-laws. Fortunately, Stella chose wisely and I ended up scoring right along with her.

This week we learned that Mia has Addison’s disease. And while it’s completely treatable it’s been an awful week of testing, more testing, injections, fluids and waiting and seeing. Mia, petitie to begin with, lost three pounds in five days. So we wait and see and hope she turns the corner.


1/22/09: Update! Mia has improved dramatically and is nearly 100% back to her bouncy poodle self. This road was rocky, however, so she’ll continue to be monitored for the next few months until things are definitely stable.


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