Monday, September 30, 2013


Now the trail still leads into unknown places.  I have never had a dog in my life this long.  Karen and I have only had to make a decision to let Poni go.  That lesson was amazing in its beauty and rightness, and searingly painful in its loss and heart break.
     I think it is the ultimate end to any guardianship, to help in the passing on to the next stage, to make that as caring, pain-less and honorable as you can create.
     She is my partner, and I already mourn her.  Each day is beautiful and new and brings tears and memories I want to imprint in my brain like nothing else I have ever experienced.  Tonight I rubbed her soft fur near her ears and felt the two shaved bald patches on her side where the ultrasound imaging was performed.  I realized she has a very protective layer of fur.  It has always been there, but it keeps me from touching her skin.  Her soft white skin with the dark spots is baby smooth and so foreign to me.  As foreign as the path we tread.  There is no leash, there is no leader... we walk side by side into the next clearing, past the tall trees and onto the next rise to take in what ever is next.  We face forward, looking back, me more than she, and take strength from each other.  I think she feels better but tired, and that is all.  Nothing has changed for her, really.  But for me, my world has screamed to a slow pace filled with a desperation to capture it all and let nothing escape.
When I arrived at work yesterday, I noticed the leaves in one of the parking lots had changed mostly to gold.  The quality of light was actually different because of the leaves. 
When did this happen?
I need to stay aware of real time while I just want to focus on how many rubs and pats I can give Puppette.
October?  It is tomorrow and I do not know how it got here. 
 Did I blink again?

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Hello, Beautiful

     So how did all of this start?
     In 2000, I wanted a mouse.  Yes, a mouse.
     Karen, the most intelligent and perceptive partner that she is, pointed out that it is difficult to cuddle a mouse.
     An amazing PT named Margaret told me that the woman that ran her day care had a litter of Golden Retriever puppies.  I had met a golden/irish setter cross as a teen, remembered it fondly, and thought "hmmm, let's go look."
     We met Misty, the momma, and her 10 surviving puppies.  One had died from an impacted umbilicus, or some such nastiness.
     I went about this process in a very determined manner.  I temperament and intelligence tested each puppy.  I had made it through about 7 of them when the breeder, Seegar I think her name was, thrust one little pup into my hands.  I do believe she was getting tired of me handling each puppy and taking way too much time.
     I had been saying, for some time, that I would know the dog for me when it grabbed me by the nose and did not let go.
     When the breeder placed the golden fluff ball into my hands, I let it lean onto my chest and I felt a warm sensation push through the center of my chest (fourth chakra).  The little girl then leaned her head back and grabbed my goatee in her tiny perfect teeth and did not let go.  I looked up at Karen and knew this was the one.  A picture exists of a minute after this joining up of us two, I will post it when I find it.
     That was about thirteen years ago.  A little perfect golden puff ball and I started down a trail into things I had never imagined could be.  Obedience, therapy Pet Partners, dog trainer, dachshunds and so many more adventures.
     That is how this all started.  A boy and his amazing dog.   
     She is tired today, but I can tell she feels better.  I was greeted by her age diminished "WOOOO WOOOO" when I came home, and she licked my face and arms.  She does not do that too often any more.  Maybe she knows more that I give her credit for, but then, I believe that has always been the case.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Puppette, the most wonderful dog I have ever had the pleasure of knowing, had a very bad day yesterday.  She vomited and then did not want to eat her breakfast.  This is so unusual for her, I took her to the vet.  The initial work up and x-rays indicated she might have pleural effusion and kidney involvement.  These two things in combination are very bad.  after a rush trip to another vet clinic, and several hours of tests, it was determined it was not so bad, or was it?

Puppette has left lobe consolidated pneumonia, pancreatitis, and a growth in her bladder.  Well shit!
Today, my long conversation with Dr Perente clarified the situation.  Puppette has a transitional cell carcinoma in her bladder.  If treated aggressively, we could have many more months together.  If treated conservatively, she has a few months left.
I now have to define my relationship with my best girl in months.
This is a place I have dreaded and looked at side ways for thirteen years.  But now that it has shown up at my door, I really want to kick it in the nuts!
I have to decide so many things, now.  I am Puppette's guardian.  I have to make decisions she can't make.  I have to pay attention to her and read her more closely than ever before to make sure I do not miss some little sign or signal that the time is here.
Months.  Collections of 28, 29, 30 or 31 days.  I have had years.  But am I so greedy to want more?
I will write my thoughts here, for a time.  Maybe I will write this up until and just past saying good bye.