Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Into each life .....

What a wonderful morning in the woods!   Without the horseflies ... it is pure pleasure for the dogs to meander along and sniff out every new scent.   Even better, it is still 'lovely, dark and deep' under the old forest canopy.  Best of all, the sporty carrier that our new pet store in Greenwood ordered in for me is working wonderfully when Andy needs to hitchhike.
As a matter of fact, when the carrier came in, the folks who run Pet Central liked it so much that they have ordered more!   It is well made, easy to clean ... and like everything else in their store very reasonably priced.  
We believe Andy is fifteen now ... and as Bette Davis once said, old age is no place for sissies.    The week after I adopted Rascal, I had to hustle Andy into my vets for what we thought was a bladder infection.     His urine test was so hinky we did a full blood workup and discovered that my little man is in chronic renal failure.
I'm a big fan of regular checkups for all dogs, even more so for seniors.   When everything seems to be ticking over well, folks don't always feel the need to ante up for a vet visit.
Because Andy had only had his last checkup the month before, beyond the obvious bit about the weight loss,  it was easy for my vet to notice the difference in his heart too :(  
CRF can be a roller coaster ... but that doesn't mean that it is time for imminent doom and gloom.   If the Goddess is kind, it can be properly managed for some time.
So now ... we celebrate the small things.   The days when he feels up for his hike ... the hikes when he spends more time sniffing along than hitchhiking in his carrier ... and the mealtimes when his appetite his good and he eats with a gusto!
Good days or bad days ... he is still never further than five feet from me in the house.   He may feel more fragile ... but he is still first in line for snuggles and hugs!
Why is it so easy for some to stop loving pets when they age?  By our best estimates, Andy was thirteen when he was rescued.   Did someone think he had wandered off to die?   Or did they simply feel he was past his best before date when they dumped him?
It is beyond my imagining how Andy came to be homeless when he is so sweet and loyal and everything one could wish for in a friend.   
Even before he became ill, I knew we weren't going to have fifteen years of love together.  But as my friend Janice often says .... time is only a problem for humans and that our dogs are really here to teach us to not to be limited by 'receding walls of time'.
What time is it?    It is always time to remember that the true measure of our society is the love and respect we show to those who are aging.   For pet owners ... and adopters ... that means that pets are never, ever too old to be loved!

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