Pronto Is Much More Than Just A Pet

Pronto and Kaimana are as close as 'brothers'. TANNYA JOAQUIN PHOTO

Pronto and Kaimana are as close as ‘brothers’. TANNYA JOAQUIN PHOTO

Regular readers of this column will recall mentions of and stories about my two children.

I’ve neglected to bring up my first baby until now: my Jack Russell/Chihuahua, Pronto.

Before I had kids, I had Pronto. Heck, before I got married, I had Pronto.

It was love at first sight. I scooped him into my arms (all 1.5 pounds of him), he nuzzled my face and that was it.

I guess he picked me, too. Never mind that my then-fiancé, now-husband Alan told me previously that he was a “big dog guy.” I knew he would fall for Pronto, too.

Although, in his case, it was more confusion than love. I remember Alan coming home to see Pronto lying on my chest.

Without missing a beat, he asked, “Are we dog sitting?”

I responded sheepishly, “oops.” I said we could return Pronto if he didn’t feel the same way I did.

My “big dog guy” caved quickly, impressed that this smart little puppy was potty trained in a weekend. Pronto showered Alan with affection, too.

Alan even carried Pronto around town in a bag. Suddenly, he loved that we could have our little dog with us.

Once under Alan’s watch, our cousin’s Rottweiler accidentally stepped on Pronto pup, and he started limping. Alan was so worried, he gave Pronto turkey treats.

Pronto stopped limping, but started faking injuries to score treats. Yes, he’s that smart.

Pronto was our ring bearer, dressed in a tux. We celebrated his first birthday with a party and custom cake.

That was nearly 10 years ago, but he’s still got the spunk of a puppy. That’s why I knew something was wrong when he wouldn’t perk up or eat.

Unfortunately, it was not another ploy for treats.

After researching symptoms online, I made an emergency appointment with a veterinary hospital. Luckily, it’s open Sunday for emergency care.

I cried the entire drive there. Holding his weakened body in my arms, I flashed back to the first time I picked him up, and remembered how he used to burrow under our blankets and sleep in bed with us, pre-children. Boy, did I feel guilty for taking him for granted.

Blood tests quickly ruled out diseases I read about online. The only option to find the unknown source of discomfort was surgery.

Our vet said smart older dogs like him aren’t likely to do something dumb like eat 40 socks. The mystery mass blocking Pronto’s small intestine turned out to be a macadamia nut (he somehow found and inhaled without chewing.)

If I had waited, it could have been life-threatening. I’m thankful for the vets’ care and for a chance to spoil my first “son.”

I hope he lives up to his name and recovers Pronto. That would be a true treat.