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2006-08-11 :: Manny: 07-29-96 to 08-07-06

For those of you that know me pretty well, you also knew Manny, my 10 year-old Black Lab.

Manny became ill in May of a disease named Blastomycosis, a fungal disease that attacked his lungs.  He was a big dog, 90 lbs more or less, prior to his illness.  At his death, he weighed a bit over 60 lbs.

I know this has nothing to do with investment discussions, but this has been a particularly difficult week so for me the best way to end it is to pay tribute to Manny.

For all of you pet owners reading this, Blasto is a terrible disease.  It has a 65% survival rate for four-year-old dogs.  Clearly much less for 10 year-old dogs.  Dogs (and people) contract Blasto by breathing in fungal spores.  Being a Lab, he loved to be in the roam through the trees and roll around in the dust and dirt.  The vet said that this was likely how he contracted it, by stirring up some dust that had the spores in it, and breathing them in.  It is becoming much more prevalent in Champaign/Urbana, as the vet says he sees it prety frequently these days.

The treatment is an expensive anti-fungal drug.  In four-year-old dogs, the drug should start to work in a couple of weeks, then the course of treatment would continue for several weeks longer.  It just didn’t work for Manny.

So, spend some time with your pets this weekend, and leave me to worry about the currently illogical nature of the markets.

More later!

Mark