Nine years ago today I brought home a little furry bundle of brown freckles. I just finished grad school and had been searching for an English Springer Spaniel when saw an ad in an online newspaper from a home up in Germantown, WI. There were nine pups in the litter and all were spoken for except for one female. We decided to meet the next night for me to look at her. The 2.5-hour drive seemed to take forever but I finally got there and instantly fell in love with “Spinelli” (aka Millie). The family named her after a character in Disney’s Recess cartoon but her name was changed before we got to the Illinois state line. We finally got home around midnight that night and Millie quickly adapted to her surroundings. I didn’t know it at the time but I was extremely lucky that she was almost completely house trained. (Wait for the stories of Daisy and Chip.)
Millie and I adopted Daisy two years later and they quickly became best friends. Three years after that, Chip came into the picture as with a new job a few months prior to his adoption. The job required a long commute and I was gone 10 hours every day which was a big change from being home during the day and teaching lessons at night. Between the new schedule and a new little brother, Millie started to get sick with constant ear and skin infections, thinning fur and increased aggression.
My local vet said she had a staph infection and prescribed antibiotics in the form of two shots per week. Millie was out of control and giving her shots was a huge struggle. After a few months of this I started to take Millie to a holistic vet in Winfield, IL. All of her infections were the result of Leaky Gut Syndrome and through a diet change, applied kinesiology, chiropractic care and acupressure, her condition has drastically improved over the past few years. She still deals with mild skin infections and allergies but these are mostly under control.
Millie is like me in many so ways: stubborn, grouchy and a control freak. Perhaps that’s why we’ve always connected so well. These past 9 years have been the best years of my life and I’m looking forward to sharing many more years with my little Millie.