We’ve finally come to it. LarryDog is 16 and a half. He barely can walk. He eats little, though still likes bits of raw hamburger. He is either totally deaf or darn close. He has some vision, and he still has an unerring ability to hone in on me and come over for a bit of petting.
Today, he’s getting lots of attention. Tomorrow he will go for his last car ride, to the veterinarian’s, and later we will bury his body in our orchard while his spirit soars beyond the Rainbow Bridge.
We’ve known for some time that he was aging pretty fast, and when my husband got a bit of work in California, at first I wanted to stay home with the dog. But when a young couple we know were available to house-sit (and free at that), Kelly and I decided to do a road trip, visiting family and friends.
We talked over Larry’s situation with the couple who were going to stay here, and they were fine with it. As it turned out, we were gone a month. Our petsitter wrote us: “Ol’ Larrydog (“Larryatric”–behind his back) is delightful and as sweet as ever. He is enjoying his walks very much…. He reminds me of some comic strip dog, but I can’t quite put my finger on it.”
We loved the photo snapshot they sent along:
When we got home last week, Larry was more delicate. We could see that the day was coming, and we were pretty close to calling the veterinarian this week when our Rottweiler, Lola, developed a large lump in her abdomen. She has had infection problems near where she was spayed, as the procedure wasn’t done well. (It had been done in Mexico, before we adopted her there.) So we took her to our vet yesterday and he is doing surgery today. He doesn’t think it is life threatening. When we go to pick her up tomorrow, LarryDog will go along. You know the rest.
UPDATE A COUPLE OF DAYS LATER: It worked out even better! Lola is doing great after her surgery and we picked her up yesterday morning. It happened that our vet was doing ranch and home calls near us yesterday, so he came by here. LarryDog hardly noticed the injection, and ever so peacefully was gone. Of course I did shed a few tears as we buried him, but overall Kelly and I have such a sense of completeness.
In celebration of the dear old dog, here is a photo collage I did of him back in February: