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Today’s Happy Shot — and why I love my vet

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My husband and his family have been taking their pets to Feather and Fur Animal Hospital for years.

When we got married, he insisted I take my two dogs there, too.

I was on the fence. I really like the vet who’s been taking care of both Sunny and Indy since they were pups and the thought of going somewhere new — and trusting someone new — wasn’t appealing.

Vets are like hair stylists, dentists and mechanics. You find one you like, one who you’re comfortable with, and you don’t change.

But working with the vets at the Kailua animal hospital with ‘Elua these past few months have really changed my mind.

There aren’t many clinics that have vets who know how to treat and care for birds and exotic animals. But Drs. Kirk Ayling and Mina Khoii were both knowledgable and compassionate in how we handled ‘Elua’s ailing health. They both plainly laid out our options and explained each scenario so we could make the best choice for our bird. It made me feel a ton better knowing ‘Elua was here with these two.

When my husband and I went to the hospital to say goodbye to ‘Elua, Dr. Khoii, who has worked as an associate veterinarian at the Honolulu Zoo and has handled plenty of chickens there, went over exactly what would happen when we put down our bird. She said that since the infection caused fluid build-up in her belly, she couldn’t inject the euthanizing drug there. (Usually, it can be injected in the belly and we could have held her while she died.) Instead, she had to administer the drug in her wing, so we could only stand by and watch.

Dr. Khoii was sympathetic and kind. I could tell euthanizing animals — not matter how humane — wasn’t her favorite thing. But she kept reminding us that this was the most compassionate choice for ‘Elua.

She brought in a box of Kleenex for us and let us spend a few minutes with ‘Elua after. We could even leave out the back door to avoid the sympathetic stares and concerned looks on the faces of the folks in the waiting area.

It wasn’t easy, but Dr. Khoii made us feel good — well, as good as could feel — about our decision.

And then, the other day, we got a card from her and the staff at Feathers and Fur (above). And the card included a few of ‘Elua’s feathers.

It was the sweetest, most thoughtful gesture of sympathy I could have ever imagined getting from anyone, much less our vet. It rendered me speechless — which, if you know me, isn’t easy — and made me feel a lot better, not just about our choice to euthanize ‘Elua but to switch vets, too.

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Today’s Happy Shot

It’s Valentine’s Day! Do — and eat — what you love!

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Today’s Happy Shot

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There’s nothing like celebrating a holiday with donuts! Happy Fourth, everyone!

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Today’s Happy Shot

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What is it about baked macaroni and cheese that makes it so irresistibly good? That’s particularly true for the version served at 12th Avenue Grill in Kaimuki (above). This dish came with Hamakua mushrooms, too. A must!

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Today’s Happy Shot

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I sat in the rain in Nuuanu at the graves of my grandparents and wondered what life would be like if they were still here.

It’s probably something a lot of think about on Memorial Day, but this one been particularly hard.

I don’t have any more grandparents alive and I see people around me — my parents, the Old Guys — getting older and older. I wish I talked to my grandparents more, wrote down their stories, learned their recipes. Time is so fleeting like that.

So on this Memorial Day, after you visit those who have passed, spend time with those still around. Listen to their stories, learn to make their nishime, and most importantly, hug them and tell them you love them. That’s what Memorial Day should be all about.

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