Last week, my husband dropped off some homegrown tomatoes at my mom’s house and she asked him to look at her dog’s belly, where she had felt something…odd. When he came home he said, “There’s something wrong with your mom’s dog. He has some weird growth on his stomach. I looked at it and it’s the strangest thing. It feels like a pencil.”
My mom, who is more attached to her dog than she is to her crossword puzzles – and that’s really saying something – called me the next day in tears. “Did you hear about Cappy? He has this hard growth and I don’t know what it is. I’m taking him to the vet tomorrow.”
Because it’s easy for me and my Zoloft to say, I reassured her. “Mom, don’t worry about it until you talk to the vet. It could just be a cyst. Blue had a whole bunch of them and they were nothing.” This didn’t do anything to alleviate her fears.
That evening I went to her house for dinner and offered to take a look at this thing. I was prepared to be grossed out because my sister had looked too, and she mentioned that it had an open sore.
But, it turned out that all the people who had already touched this thing were the ones who were grossed out, because that growth that felt like a pencil and had an opening – the growth that my mom, sister and husband had examined and touched? It was the dog’s penis.
And I will never let them live it down.