Saturday, May 7, 2016

he was the best

my dog died three nights ago on 4 May 2016.  it was totally unexpected and it totally broke my heart.  it was the day before my birthday.

he had been acting ... different ... for several weeks.  but not the kind of different that you would take him to the vet for

he was eating, drinking, peeing, pooping, breathing, running, and walking without any indication that he was sick.  the morning he died, you would never have thought that it was going to be his last.

over the last several weeks, he wanted to be closer to us.  he wanted to snuggle, cuddle, and sleep between us on the bed so we made a sandwich, with him as the spread holding us together.

when he sat at the far end of the sofa with my husband, some nights he would get up and walk towards where i was sitting at the computer, so he would be standing behind my husband's back and he would just look at me.

he would look at me so intently, that i realize now he was just coming closer to look in my eyes and say ... "hey, i love you.  i really love you."

i knew something was going on with him, but you don't walk into a vet's office with your dog and say, "he's loving me too much, i think there is something wrong with him."  they would have laughed me off the planet.

i believe he knew his time was short, and i think he was preparing us by comforting us in advance, and giving us happy memories with him.

the day he died, we had gone to Ashland, Wisconsin to look at job opportunities, came home and went fishing for an hour.  in all, we were gone for about six hours.

when i took him out for a walk once we were home, he acted as if it hurt to walk so i took him off leash to let him go at his pace.  he peed and pooped (3x!), and seemed to feel better.  he wanted to walk across the street with me.  then he stopped, sat and laid down in the middle of the street.  i could barely get him to stand, and when i did, he was reluctant to walk.

we finally got him back to the house, and since i still thought that it was pain related to his legs and walking, i went to the store to get him some baby aspirin for the pain.  he was 12 years old, and while i kept him at a healthy and lean weight so he wouldn't have joint issues, i think there was still some arthritis because of his age.  in people years he would have been 78.

while i was gone, no more than 30 minutes, my husband said that he slumped down and five times he had stopped breathing and fallen over on his side.  he was able to call him back by rubbing his feet and talking to him.  trooper was gone within 15 minutes after i got home.  i think he was waiting for me.  considering how he died, and how quickly, i believe he had a stroke.
last Saturday night (30 April 2016) he curled up on the bed between us and put his head forehead into my chest.  for two hours until i fell asleep, i whispered into his ear and told him how much he was loved, how smart, brave, and handsome he was.  i told him that i didn't know what was going on with him, but that if it was something wrong, we would do whatever we could to get it fixed, and if it couldn't be fixed, we were going to focus on quality, not quantity.  i told him i never wanted to have to make the decision to put him down and would really prefer he went in his sleep, but that i would never let him suffer.  he knew he was loved.

so do we.

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