the cat who writes

Write, take naps, and take another nap

Martha, my bodyguard has arthritis, and can’t walk up the stairs anymore

Martha, a dog and my dearest friend, has arthritis.

She couldn’t get up on her hind legs on her own.  My typist, Mrs. Hodges, had to help Martha up. Once she was up she could walk, but it was scary to see my friend so weak. Mrs. Hodges thought Martha might be on her last legs. They are her only legs so of course they are her last legs.


Martha was a princess for Halloween

Mrs. Hodges took Martha to the veterinarian. She was very worried. The first night of Martha’s illness Mrs. Hodges and her youngest child slept on the floor in the living room beside Martha’s bed. Martha had always slept upstairs beside Mr. and Mrs. Hodges bed. And this night, for the first time in Martha’s life, Martha couldn’t walk up the stairs.

When Martha tried to squat to urinate, her hide legs couldn’t support her.

Martha Went to see the Veterinarian

I wasn’t sure if Martha would come back from the veterinarian. Sally, a dog who lived in the Hodges house when I was one year old, went to the veterinarian and never came back. She was fourteen. They said she was put to sleep. She is still sleeping. Sometimes Mrs. Hodges says to the children, “Let me put you to sleep.” I like naps, but I do like to wake up.

Martha came back from the Veterinarian with a little green bottle. Mrs. Hodges gives Martha one pill wrapped in peanut butter every day.

Martha can get up by herself now.

“What did the veterinarian say Mrs. Hodges?”

“Martha has arthritis Pooh. She has to take medicine every day now.”

All Life is Valuable

It is sad that Martha can’t walk up the stairs anymore. She sleeps a lot during the day. She is an old dog. But life is valuable. All life. Even an old dog who sleeps all day has value.

In my daily reading on Facebook I see a lot of video’s of kittens and puppies. There are so many people who like to look at kittens. A dog with a gray muzzle who doesn’t chase the ball anymore or frolic may be overlooked. But in her eyes and gray muzzle I see compassion and wisdom and  beauty. The gray hair on Martha’s muzzle is as beautiful as the finest silver and gold.

Martha has been my friend ever since she came to live with us over six years ago. She is my bodyguard and I love her.

Mrs. Hodges has a plan to help Martha live longer. The veterinarian thought her plan was a good idea.

Can you guess what Mrs. Hodges is going to do? Please tell me in the comments. I would love to hear from you.

And please check out my regular job at The Write Practice with my story: A Cat’s Secret To Bringing Your Writing Alive 

 Here is a story about Martha and how she came to live with the Hodges.

Our Dogs Name is Martha by Pamela Hodges



About Pooh Hodges

I have had a hard life. Born to a single mother in a back alley in Wisconsin. I never knew my father. My sister died young. I am writing my story. Look for it.

Feature Box

Get my free guide, “12 Tips to Introduce Cats.” (Plus everything I write when I am not napping.)

This is an animal blog. Written by animals. Humans are only necessary to type for us. We don’t have thumbs.

  • Nadia

    Dear Pooh,
    We are all worried about your bodyguard Martha. We heard that a good massage can help increase circulation. Maybe you should give her a massage from time to time. We hope Martha gets better.
    Jethro and Goldie (Nadia’s cats)

    • My dearest Jethro and Goldie,
      Thank you so much for our concern for Martha. Mrs. Hodges and I will give her a massage today.
      Please give my best to Nadia, your typist, she is very kind to help you write to me.
      All my best,
      Love Pooh

  • La McCoy

    Oh Pooh,
    Please tell Martha I undersigned about leg pain. My leg can not let me stand up some days. Then one day mom saw me fall in a hole. That one hurt. I was busy barking and the pain came on later.
    Please give Martha, my friend, My best wishes.

    • My dearest Edelweiss,
      I am so sorry to hear about your typist’s leg pain. Please give her my love. How did you happen to fall in a hole? You are very wise to bark a lot. I hope the pain is gone from your legs Edelweiss.
      All my best,
      Love Pooh

  • Dave Kwiecinski

    Oh, Pooh! I am so sad for Martha, for Mrs. Hodges, and for you and the rest of the Hodges family. Thank you for sharing this news with us. Much love to you all.

    • Dear Dave, father of a cat tribe
      Thank you so much for your concern for Martha. She does very well with her medicine. A pill a day for the rest of her life. Which I hope will be long.
      Much love to you and your family.
      Love Pooh

  • hana

    Don’t be sad, Pooh! Martha is still alive, she’s still with you and loves you as before. Do you have any dog physiotherapy in the neighborhood ? There have to be a pool there. They can help to lower Martha’s pain and to straighten her muscles. Is she getting any pain drug? We wish her a long life, but you have to know: she’s suffering all the time. When she will by in a very bad shape, your vet will help her to sleep. I think there’s still a lot of time for you together. Don’t panic! You have a friend.

    • Oh dear Hana,
      I didn’t know she is suffering all the time. She never complains. Last night she was able to make it up the carpeted stairs and she slept beside Mr. Hodges.
      We really do love her.
      I will ask Mrs. Hodges to make a few phone calls about dog physiotherapy. Or perhaps we can try and get her in Mrs. Hodges bathtub.
      She does get a lot of petting. But that might not take away the pain.

  • Amindele

    Oh Pooh, it is heartwarming that you and Mrs. Hodges are caring for your friend in her old age. Give Martha my love.

    • Hello Amindele,
      Thank you for your kindness for Martha. We will give Martha your love.
      And Martha if she had to chance to meet you would lay down by your feet and give you unconditional love back.
      Can you guess what Mrs. Hodges is going to do to help Martha in her old age?

      • Amindele

        I don’t know… What?

        • My dearest Amindele,
          Please forgive my delay in responding, my typist was out of town for a day.
          Mrs. Hodges is going to get a puppy.
          Love Pooh

  • Skittles Anderson

    We all were really sad to hear about Martha’s arthritis, Maybe you should go lie next to her and give her Purring therapy, that’s what we do when the big guy is sick or stressed out or had a bad day. Our former CEO Mischief had arthritis and couldn’t jump up on the couch or bed, so the big guy built ramps to help her get onto her favorite furniture.

    Tell Martha that we’re all thinking about her and wishing her well.

    • Hello my dearest Skittles,
      Your big guy was very kind to build a ramp for Mischief. Thankfully I can still jump on the bed. Sometimes Mrs. Hodges doesn’t wake up at five to feed us, so I have to make sure she knows we are hungry by jumping on the bed.

      Thank you so much for your kind concern for Martha. We all really do love her.
      Love Pooh

  • Tamara B.

    Pooh, I think Mrs. Hodges is going to start giving Martha chicken noodle soup every day, because chicken collagen, which is found in good broth, is a potent arthritis/inflammation fighter. Not only that, another dog named Martha started speaking after eating chicken noodle soup because the letters went to her brain. You can read about her adventures in the book, Martha Speaks. Give our love to the real Martha!

    • Hello my dearest Tamara B.
      Does the B stand for beautiful? Or butterfly?
      Oh, I wish Mrs. Hodges was going to make chicken noodle soup, as I would like some too.
      Maybe Martha would walk better and be able to talk as well. Martha was named after the dog in the “Martha Speaks,” books.
      Mrs. Hodges is planning on Martha having someone small to take care of. Can you guess? Was that a good clue?
      I will give your love to Martha.
      Love Pooh

      • Tamara B.

        Dear Pooh,
        I’m so glad to be reminded that you are already acquainted with the Martha who speaks, and that she has been memorialized in your own dear Martha. You really have me guessing now, Pooh. Are the Hodges going to adopt a baby, or a kitten, or a puppy, or a capybara??

        • My dearest Tamara,
          You are very close to guessing. Now which do you think Martha would playing with more. A baby, a kitten, a puppy or a capybara?
          The answer will be revealed soon.

        • My dearest Tamara,
          Please forgive me for not answering your question directly.
          Mrs. Hodges is getting a puppy for Martha to play with.
          Love Pooh

  • Kathy

    A good plan for Martha the dog would be to have some water therapy as it helps joints and maybe it will relieve the pain from the arthritis. Hope she gets better soon. I know Pooh has a compassionate side for her friend, despite being a dog. Best wishes that whatever therapy Mrs. Hodges starts for Martha, that it will be effective.

    • Hello Kathy,
      Thank you for your suggestion of water therapy. I wonder if we could take her to the pool at the YMCA? They keep the water very hot for the elderly. Perhaps that includes dogs?
      Her medicine really does help. I hope Mrs. Hodges therapy will be effective as well. I hope her therapy doesn’t chase me.

      • Kathy

        I’ve heard of vet clinics that have such a water therapy available for animals with joint problems. You might ask the vet if he is aware of any facility that helps pets, especially large dogs with such exercise. Good luck! Not sure if YMCA is so open-minded.