Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sweet Dog

I haven't posted in weeks, again. I have been caring for our big dog, our weimaraner Merlin, who had begun to decline rapidly. If you stopped by recently, you saw my previous post about his visit to the vet. His big fatty deposit had begun to grow again and he could hardly get around. My time was spent on my new job and snuggling/caring for my sweet dog. We knew his time was nearing. My girls and I had discussed it, and cared for him knowing it was nearing his end.
On Tuesday, Dec. 17th he didn't get up all day, and he hadn't been eating much for a week. I had even made chicken and rice, and put broth in his food, but he unusually wanted neither. So, I called the vet and they asked a lot of questions. They asked us to bring him in for a consultation. We did so. They told us it was time to put him down, which was what we expected, but still so hard to hear. We have had him for 13 1/2 years. He was my sweet shadow, following me around the house even right up to the end. He could barely carry that big bump, which was stealing all his nutrients, leaving his legs weak and scant of muscle. And, yet, the night before he died I woke in the night to hear him struggling to get up the stairs to sleep outside my bedroom door, per his usual. It's also strange not to have him anxiously awaiting us as we return from a run, he would pace the house until we were all home again.
On his last day, as he just laid in his bed, we covered him with a blanket. Our other dog, Percy, who didn't usually interact directly with Merlin, laid with his head on Merlin's legs. He sensed it was time, as well. Poor Percy has wandered around our house looking lonely. He laid on the blanket we covered Merlin with and won't let us remove it from his pillow.
It was hard, still is at certain moments. Those first few days, opening my bedroom door and expecting to have to step over him, and he isn't there, it tugs on my heart and makes me so sad. When the girls were off to school and my husband was off to work, Merlin was always tagging along, going wherever I went. Now, Percy sleeps in his bed and Merlin isn't here. It is strange-a void is left in his place.
When we would go away, our neighbors would care for the dogs because Merlin didn't like to have to go somewhere else like a kennel. I texted some friends when we had decided to take him to the vet, our neighbor being one of them. She asked if her youngest son, who is an animal lover and cared so much for Merlin, could come say goodbye. It was so sweet watching him care for Merlin, and Merlin trying to give him some tail wags. After Merlin's passing they came by again, this time with a gift. They had donated money to our local animal shelter in Merlin's name "In Memory of a Good Friend". Such a sweet gesture. It still brings me tears to think of. We went and picked up his ashes last week. I have them in a nice wooden box with the certificate from our neighbors, a card that came on flowers from my sister in law and a card from our vet. I found a nice etsy shop, too, that had wooden frames you could personalize. I ordered one and now just have to decide on a picture.
I will get to blogging more, now, Readers, since the busy Christmas holiday is over and my snuggling and caring time for Merlin has passed. I do appreciate you stopping by.


Molly said...

dear Jen, This made me cry for Merlin and for all of you. Dogs are such faithful friends and love us unconditionally. I hope he is in doggy heaven and that you maybe , not right away, but sometime, get a new friend for Percy. Big hug from here.

Thimbleanna said...

Awwww Jen, you made me cry too. Merlin sounds like he was a wonderful dog. It's so hard to lose our faithful companions. Sending you and your family big hugs.