The good news is that Munster, Baltimore's famous diapered bulldog, is feeling better than he was a week ago. The not-so-good news is that he still has a little way to go before he can return home.
Munster, who was born with Spina Bifida and now has more than 388,000 Facebook fans around the world, landed at the Pet+ER in Towson last week after getting violently sick from what at first seemed to be an intestinal blockage. After some testing, doctors figured out this week that he had bladder stones that led to an infection. Friday, he'll undergo a procedure to try and flush those stones out, says his "grandmother," Glenda Westling, who co-owns Munster with her daughter, Glenda Mosner.
"He's doing a lot better," Westling says. "He ate yesterday and took a drink, and he was so happy to see us when we got there. He gave us tons of kisses."
He was also taking all of his medication by mouth, which was a big improvement. Veterinarians are hopeful that if Friday's procedure goes well, Munster could go home sometime Saturday. And that's news that should thrill his legions of fans.
"There's a lady -- one of his Facebook fans -- who says she's flying in from Minnesota on Friday to see Munster," says Westling. "She wants to visit him after he comes out of surgery. That's amazing. I can't imagine someone flying in."
Westling says Munster's fans also continue to make donations to cover his vet hospital bills, which are running about $2,000 per day.
"I can't say enough how grateful we are to the Pet+ER," Westling says. "They love him and they take care of him like he's their own."
For his part, Munster seems to have plans of his own: His Facebook page says he's hoping all the attention will land him a spot at the pitcher's mound to open an Orioles game this summer. Westling says she thinks that would be a fitting tribute to the little dog who's overcome so much (are you reading this, Buck Showalter?)
"He loves sports," she says with a laugh. "In football season, we put his little Ravens shirt on and he lays on the couch with us and watches the game. But in the summer, he loves to watch baseball. He sees the players running around the bases and jumps over to the T.V. to see what they're doing and where they're going."
For now, Westling says the family sends its gratitude to everyone who's sent well wishes to Munster, and adds one request: "Keep praying."