Sunday, April 4, 2010

My Dog Died This Morning

Sandy was 13 years old, a yellow Lab.  She hadn't been in good health, but seemed to get worse this weekend.  She was having trouble getting up and walking, and she was having trouble breathing.  Larry took her to the vet this week, and the doctor said that Sandy wasn't getting enough oxygen, so they gave her a steroid shot.  She did seem to get a little better, as far as the breathing went, and she didn't fall down for a couple of days.  But this morning around ten-thirty she got up and was trying to make it to the door to go outside, and she wasn't going to make it, so Larry helped her outside and then helped her back inside.  She got inside to about the middle of the kitchen and she just went down right there.  I thought that she was just resting; I brought her water, but she didn't drink.  I patted her a couple of times and told her she was a good dog, and left Larry petting her.  I went upstairs to get some Advil and when I came back downstairs to the kitchen I looked at her as I walked in.  She was dead, although that didn't hit me until I realized that she wasn't moving and I didn't hear her panting.  The silence of the dead is particularly jarring when it happens in your kitchen on Easter morning.

Sandy was a good dog.  She and I first met when Larry and I started dating. She was a spoiled brat, of course, and she and I had some discussions about who was boss.  I can remember her jumping on the bed at night and basically trying to shove me off the bed!  I guess I cramped her style.  It didn't help that I brought my two cats with me when I moved in, but Sandy didn't mind the cats as much as I thought she would.  She just minded me, at least at first.   Over the years, she got used to me, and even to like me, I think.  I only wish that Zane had gotten to know her when she was younger and could keep up with him.  By the time he came along she was winding down, sleeping most of the day.  The only time she really got excited or angry was when there was food to be had and when Rascal would try and hump her while she was laying down. (Rascal, my MIL's dog, is the only dog on the planet I would dearly love to punt.)

I've noticed that I never just let myself cry--I always fight it. I always lose that fight, but I guess I feel better about crying if I put up a fight. Crying over the loss of a loved one, including pets, shouldn't be something you fight, but I am what I am.  I'll probably cry off and on over the next month or so, mostly when I don't want to cry, like at work.  But I think that Sandy deserves a few tears. 

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