Finally in the first week of November we had snow fall. It was actually welcomed. Our poor tires were going to get ground down and have to be re-studded if we didn’t get snow fall. Along with the snow came some pretty cold temperatures. It fell to twelve below zero. The cracks in the windows were a problem once again.
This time we were better equipped with some pretty creative thinking. The boy’s room was the coldest in the apartment and even heating blankets weren’t helping them to sleep better. We bought a small electric space heater for their room. It helped immensely but when the wind was blowing they still had a draft that blew into the room, keeping the one whose bed was closest to the window a little nippy!! One evening, Phil decided he would try a new approach. One that I thought was pretty darned creative. Since it was twelve below zero he tried sealing the window by spraying water all around the edge. The water should freeze on contact thereby sealing the window and preventing the ice cold wind from blowing into the boy’s room through the cracks. He suited up and out he went with the spray bottle of water. It worked like a charm. Of course, when the temperature rose, combined with the heat from the inside the seal would melt. But for now, we had a nice warm answer that was environmentally safe and cheap. That night we noticed the apartment stayed noticeably warmer. The heater didn’t kick on near as much. That was good for our bank account as it is expensive to heat your place.
Everything was going well until one day I got a splitting headache. While I was laying on the couch nursing my head I noticed the dogs were unusually lethargic. I called to our Beagle, Duke. He wouldn’t even raise his head. I went over to him, thinking he might be sick. I called to him again and this time he opened his eyes. They were so glassy. I was immediately alarmed. I called to our Jack Russell, Bijoux and got the same reaction. She just looked at me with glassy, hollow eyes. I couldn’t think what could be the problem but whatever it was, they both had it. I decided to take them for a quick walk and see if they perked up. They didn’t exhibit their usual glee at seeing the leashes come out. As they waited at the door for me to get my boots and coat on, they just sat there, not even wagging their tails. Once we got outside they perked up a bit and by the time we had cleared the building they were energetic again. We went up on the mountain for a short hike. They were bounding through the snow and were their old selves again. Whew…they had me worried. Our dogs are, and always have been, very special to us. They are part of our family and when they get sick or hurt our whole family goes into a funk.
Duke in particular, likes the snow. He plows through it with such happiness. You would think he was bred for the cold. He holds his mouth open while he runs through the drifts and eats as much snow as he can. He looks like a live snow plow. Bijoux on the other hand is not so fond of the snow. But since they are on the same leash and in affect, tethered to each other, she goes along for the ride. Or should I say, is dragged along for the ride? They liked the fact that this winter I had dispensed with their sweaters. I had long since learned that they had acclimated and weren’t going to freeze to death in five minutes outside.
We got back in the house and they got their obligatory goody and settled back down. Even my head felt better. Perhaps the cold air had “shrunk” something swollen in my head. No matter, I was feeling better and was much relieved to see the dogs feeling better. Their eyes were back to being bright and shiny.
About an hour later, my headache was back and I was so very tired. I got up to take something for my headache and intended to go and lay down in the bedroom where I could truly get comfortable. As I passed the dogs on my way to the medicine cabinet, I noticed Duke’s head laying at an angle and his tongue hanging out of his mouth. He didn’t look well at all. Once again I examined his eyes and they were back to being glassy and hollow. Bijoux was in the same shape. What on Earth could be wrong with them??? I was frantic. The area inside their eyes was gray and not pink. I knew this was not good. I instinctively opened Duke’s mouth and looked in. He had an extremely red splotch on the inside of his mouth. I quickly googled his symptoms. As I was sitting there reading about what could be wrong, an alarm went off in the apartment. It wasn’t a smoke alarm either. Both dogs snapped too and began to try and find a hiding place. They were terrified. Finally, I found the source of the alarm. IT WAS THE CARBON MONOXIDE ALARM!!!!!!!!!! Oh my God!!!! We were being posioned!!!!!!!!!!