tail-wagging tuesday

No pics today, sorry. My picture loader (aka Hunky) has left town for the time being, and although I know how to load the pics onto the computer, I don’t like to do it. So there. You guys will have to wait until next week for a cute one of Mousa.

For today, I have a depressing post about Parks. For anyone who doesn’t know, Parks is the greatest dog that has ever or will ever live. I know some of you might think that you have dogs that might be the greatest, but you would be wrong. Parks is the BEST.

He wasn’t always the best. That dog was one bad puppy. He chewed…well, everything, pretty much: carpet, telephone cords, shoes, books, anything. He was rambunctious. Which is okay for a 15 pounder – Parks weighs 75 pounds. When he was about 1 1/2 years old, I was beginning to wonder what was going to become of him. He was such a sweet dog, but sooo rowdy!

Then, one night, Parks was hit by a car. He didn’t get hit hard (and thank God for that, ’cause I was pretty near wasted that night, as was the vet I volunteered for, and Jeannie was at work), but still. And I promise, from that moment on, that dog has been an absolute SAINT. And jeez, that was over 11 years ago.

Fastforward to last year: my parents offered to keep our animals while we lived in England, so that we wouldn’t have to pay all of the ridiculous costs of shipping them over here. But we couldn’t leave Parks – he mopes at my parent’s house when I’m not there. And if we weren’t leaving Parks, we couldn’t leave Kodi, because although she is not the favorite dog, we still love her and think that maybe she has fond thoughts of us sometimes. And we couldn’t leave the cats because my parents have a rottweiler, who is a very sweet (but not very good) dog, who scares the everliving crap out of our cats. They would end up living in the garage. So they all came. And I wouldn’t have it any other way, even though it makes traveling hard.

Fastforward to now: Parks is having a hard time. He has some arthritis, which we control with medication, but getting up and down the stairs is hard. And he’s losing his sight. And his hearing. He has a pretty significant heart murmur. And I think he has a touch of canine cognitive dysfunction (which is basically senine dementia). He seems a tad confused sometimes about where he is, or planning to go. He doesn’t come all the way upstairs to our room, but spends most of his time on the second floor in the office. BUT (and this is important), he seems happy. I don’t think his quality of life has diminished that much. When/if it does, I will put him down. That dog has been too good to our family for him to suffer. This may sound morbid, but I kind of hope that the heart murmur (probably signifying dilated cardiomyopathy) will get him in the end, letting him die peacefully in his sleep. Then I won’t have to make any hard decisions.

I always thought that when our dogs died, I’d want to go and get another right away…I’m pretty sure we wouldn’t do that now. I don’t have the energy for a puppy right now. Parks has been along for way longer than kids, way longer than Hunky even. And even if I was ready for puppy training, how could any other dog compare?

Wow, that sounds like an obituary. He’s not on his last legs yet, people. But one reason I don’t want to stay much longer than a month in America is that I would put his timeline at months, not years.

Okay, now that I’m near tears, I’ll go. Sorry to be so depressing. Next week will be better – I’ll try to upload that pic of Mousa, and maybe we’ll talk about Kodi, our bad dog.

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7 Comments

Filed under our four-legged family

7 responses to “tail-wagging tuesday

  1. Christy

    I would have to respectfully disagree. We had Pepper (lab/german sep mix) for 14 years and she was the best dog ever. We had to put her down a little over a year ago. I am sad for you if and when it comes to that. That was THE hardest decision I ever had to make. Hopefully, you are no where close to that.

  2. Oh, I feel it. I’m sorry you’re feeling sad. Happily I don’t have to fight with you about Best Dog Ever, because my Gus is the Sweetest/Gentlest Dog Ever in the 90+ pounds category and we’re satisfied with that title. But Boris…Boris was, empiracally speaking, the “Best Cat Ever (Seriously. We Mean It. EVER.)” and my biggest regret is that I didn’t euthanize him earlier than I did. I think it’s one of the kindest things we can do for our beloved pets.

    Pets bring out the best in us, I think. I once saw a bumper sticker that said “God help me be the person my dog thinks I am.” A worthwhile goal.

  3. Jeannie

    Oh Parks 😦

    I love you, buddy. I remember when you were so tiny in your mom’s arms at the New Orleans airport and she carried you in and no one said a thing. You just slept. All.the.time. And I remember how you used to run circles around the house in Petal and I’d sit by the door at my computer and hear you galloping around at top speed — you’d pass by every few seconds and then when you were tired you came to my door. And I remember how when your mom wasn’t home for the night you’d go wait in the living room and refused to come sleep with me, even though I am your person. And how you always can’t get close enough. And how you sat regally and let all 800 puppies in Hattiesburg crawl all over you and you never got mad at them once. And how you always wanted to bring a sock or a sheet or whatever you can find to us when we walked through the door. And how you scrunch on command. And how your tail would knock everything off the coffee table. And yes, you are soooooooooo good.

    Give him lots of snuggles from me, Ren — he really is the BEST.DOG.EVER. I will fight anyone who says otherwise.

  4. Beth

    Awww…..Parks is a sweetie. Give him lots of love and hugs….
    We had a wonderful dog like that too. Boomer can get the best pitt bull ever award. That dog has never known he was a pitt bull!

    Sorry you’re feeling sad.

  5. Jeannie

    By the way, in the middle of a sad post, this made me laugh:

    Kodi, because although she is not the favorite dog, we still love her and think that maybe she has fond thoughts of us sometimes.

    and

    Kodi, our bad dog

  6. Berd

    This is too much of a sad read. Parks knows he is loved by everyone who meets him. And I do forgive him for tearing up my carpet. He is the.best.dog.ever.

    Berd

  7. Oh, I feel for you. Two of our dogs are getting old, one with arthritis and one showing signs of dementia. It is so hard to watch them age right before my eyes. But, like your Parks, they are still happy, so we’re not near the point of having to make any hard decisions.

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