|Droopy-Doo's Christmas photo 2012|
There was no shortage of love, laughs, irritation or blog posts about my beloved guy. Here are several:
- loving my basset hound, Droopy-Doo
- no soup for you
- for the Droopy-Doo fans
- "Hoppy" Easter
- The Droopster
- photo Friday
- love this
The receptionist took him from us and had us wait out front. It seemed like forever until the vet came out. She was very short with us, and kept interrupting us trying to ask questions or tell her what we experienced. She said he'd been "attacked," and had several puncture wounds on his head and neck. We were absolutely dumbfounded. Our boys play, sometimes rougher than they should, but none of them would "attack" the other. Josh had immediately checked Junior and Griffin when he'd gotten home, and there wasn't a scratch or sign of blood on either of them (Gracie is crated inside during the day). The vet said they'd given Droopy a pain injection, partially shaved him and were cleaning his wounds. He'd have to stay overnight.
I was an absolute wreck. I cried all night. I felt like a horrible parent. We knew something had to have happened with Junior. Droopy would walk or crawl all over anyone, but if he so much as got a dirty look, the snarling and growling were on. He was old and cranky, and didn't like his personal space invaded. We thought he either had a seizure and Junior flipped out, or they had a scuffle and it sent Droopy into a seizure. Either way, I worried and worried. I hardly slept that night.
Josh called the vet around lunchtime the next day, and could hear Droopy-Doo's unmistakable bellowing, incessant bark in the background. They said he was up and alert, and wanted out of that cage, but the doctor hadn't had a chance to look him over yet to clear him to go home. I felt a lot better. I called back that afternoon, and was able to come pick him up after work. I told my boss that I would be staying home to take care of him the following day.
When the tech brought him out to me, he headed straight for the front door! He was ready to GO! He jumped right up into my car, with his front feet on the center console, just like he always wanted to ride. He was still very flinchy, but didn't look nearly as bad as how I'd imagined with what the vet had said. We took a flashlight and looked over his head. The "puncture wounds" were not bad at all, they looked more like scrapes. But his head was VERY bruised, his ear had a few abrasions, and he still had a pretty big hematoma on his neck, under his chin. He was also still drooling that thick goo a lot, something he's never done. He looked pretty bad, but other than being a bit sore and not interested in the other dogs, seemed like he was going to be OK. He was very loving toward me, and I knew he was glad to be home. We pieced together that he must've had a big seizure, and Junior pawed at him, either trying to help him, or get him to come out of it, something boxers naturally do with their feet. None of his wounds looked like they were to inflict harm. Droopy didn't want any of the dogs near him, and did snarl at Junior several times.
The next day, I ran myself ragged, keeping him comfortable. Putting pillows down for him to rest on, keeping him covered with a towel (he was constantly shivering), dabbing his drool and 'owies,' keeping the other dogs away from him ... he snapped at me twice for accidentally touching somewhere that hurt him. It was breaking my heart. I gave him his pain pill and he seemed to settle down and sleep until dinnertime. He was up and down several times during the night which was not unusual. Neither was the urine spot that Josh found in the living room the next morning.
While I was getting ready for work, he seemed better. He jumped onto the couch by himself, and even climbed onto the bench at the foot of our bed, and onto my pillow. Josh had given him his pain pill with his breakfast, so he'd sleep and be comfortable until he could get back home to him. It took me about 10 minutes to wake him up that morning. I was scared to touch him too much, or "knead" him like I usually do, but I was also trying to not be late! Finally, a treat stuck just in front of his nose got him to hop down and go outside, just like normal mornings. I told the boys the same thing I say every morning. "You be good boys, Mommy loves you."
I texted Josh a couple of times during the afternoon to see how Droopy was when he got home. I didn't hear back. I knew his back had been hurting him quite a bit, and sometimes he lays down and doesn't hear his phone. But inside, I knew something wasn't right. When I turned onto our street and saw my in-laws car in our driveway, I knew. I tried to make myself believe that maybe they'd stopped by and Josh had been busy outside visiting. But I knew. I jumped out of my car and asked where he was. Josh opened him arms to me and told me he didn't make it. I stiffly pushed him back and out of my way, asking where he was. He told me that he'd already buried him next to Maxwell. I ran out onto our property, toward the big tree behind our shop. There was a fresh mound of Oklahoma red dirt. I threw myself on the ground, wailing in sorrow.
On one hand, I felt like a crazy person. On the other, I didn't care. My Droopy-Doo was gone, and I hadn't gotten to say good-bye. I hadn't gotten to feel those soft, velvety ears one last time. I didn't get to kiss the top of his domed head, and I didn't get to tell him I loved him. He'd died all by himself, with no one to comfort him. I was horrified that I'd left him and went to work. Josh kept telling me how sorry he was. He said he didn't know how to tell me, and didn't want to risk me driving upset. He also said he knew how watching Maxwell die in front of me has haunted me, and didn't want me to see him like that. I completely understood, had absolutely no bad feelings toward him, only regret that I didn't have just one more moment to show my stinky-earred short guy how loved he was.
Josh said it looked like he'd probably had another big seizure. He'd called the vet and she said it could've been that, or a combination of lots of things. He was old, and his health was very deteriorated. Josh mentioned him being pretty out of it on the pain medication. The vet told him that it was not a narcotic, but only like a larger dosage ibuprofen, an anti-inflammatory, and that he should not have been out of it at all. I have wondered if he wasn't already dying when I woke him up that morning.
Gracie and Junior really haven't seemed all that different. Griffin kept to himself the evening Droopy died, and most of the next day. He was still young when we lost Maxwell, and mourned for him for several days. He and Droopy-Doo were not as close, but I believe he knew what happened. He has seemed more of himself the last few days, which is a huge relief to me.
Saying that I've had a REALLY hard time with this is a huge understatement. Even knowing and expecting him to not be around much longer, didn't prepare me for this. He did the ONE thing I asked him to though, which was to hold on through the holidays. I got to have several special moments with him over the last year, too. I took lots of photos of him and wanted to celebrate him as long as I could. It's not the same without him around. I still expect him to come into the bathroom and want to be petted. I still think I hear his "badger feet" toenails on our wood floors. I miss his snoring, even though I used to swat him with couch pillows to 'hush.' There are so many things I will miss about my funny, loving, sometimes exhausting, goofy basset hound.
|this was taken just after the boys moved in, he always greeted me at the door with a gift|
|one of my favorite photos of us - our "upside down" picture! :)|
He is not going to be easy to get over. Everyone loved The Droopster. He was our friend Mark's "chick magnet" at the Second Chance Dog Walk one year. He was loved and laughed at by our friends. He could be such a clown. He could also be very annoying, there's no need to sugar-coat it. He was mischief, defined. But I loved him, even the irritating things. One of my work friends loved to hear "Droopy stories," about him stealing Josh's pillow and not wanting to move. Anytime we took him places, he was interested in being petted by as many people as possible. He loved being loved.
The next day, sitting in our room, still in a bit of shock, tears falling, I caught something out of the corner of my eye. It's a photo that I've had in the same frame, in the same spot, for years. Back in 2004, Droopy-Doo and Maxwell had been playing in our bed, messing up the covers, "making a fort," and just being silly guys, when they both stuck their heads out of the bottom of the comforter and top sheet. They were so funny and sweet looking, and I snapped a picture as we laughed at them. They'd never done that before, and never did again. And in that moment, in that photo, I realized my two canine angels were together again, young, healthy, spunky and probably romping around having a ball.
|my angels, Droopy-Doo and Maxwell, playing under the covers|
|"Uncle Mark" and Droopy-Doo at the Second Chance Dog Walk, 2010|
|I have soooo many photos like this, LOVED his long, crusty nose, LOL!|
|Rock Star Droopy - one of our UFC party guests put her sunglasses on him - he was the hit of the party!|
My heart is broken, and I hurt so much right now, but each day gets easier. And it will continue to get easier. I take comfort in the fact that he's no longer hurting. I know he was well taken care of, loved and given all the comforts a puppy dog deserves. I know he knew I loved him, I just wish I'd been able to say good-bye.
Thank you for your patience with me. I know there will be several sentimental posts to come. It's been difficult, at best, to start scrapbooking photos of him the last few months that I'd fallen behind on.
As one of my co-workers said to me, there's a difference between a "dog," a "family pet," and a "member of your family." Droopy-Doo, and all our fur-kids, ARE our kids. I am their Mommy, and I feel their hurts, happys and sads right along with them. They are part of my heart. Our friends and family all know how loved our kids are, and they love them too.
|Christmas Day 2012, playing in the snow|
|Christmas Day 2012, playing in the snow with Gracie & Griffin|
|Mothers Day 2012, and an updated "upside down" picture|
Thanks for stopping by today, and I hope to have a page or two to share tomorrow.