I’m back from a long December and first half of January.  I’d like to say the holidays were GREAT but I can’t say it was all happy times. Being an OPTIMIST, I will start with the positive!!  Time off from my “day” job was great. I was busy pet sitting for many of our wonderful clients that got away for the holidays.  It makes me so happy to offer pet sitting to those clients that need to get away! I know how wonderful it is to get a vacation and not worry about my pets so giving that feeling to others means the world!  And, time with family and friends over the holidays were a blessing!

Today though, I would like to talk to you about senior dogs!  I had a senior dog named Maximus, we called him Max.  He passed the first part of December, we actually chose to have him put down.  That was one of the hardest decisions my husband and I had to make.  He was like our baby.  My husband and I never had children, we have three from my previous marriage that he has been an amazing father to.  But, Max was OUR baby.  He came to us by chance, one of our neighbors had a dog that had puppies in his back yard.  This momma was one amazing momma.  Sad to say, her owner wasn’t as amazing.  He let her scrounge the neighborhood for food for her and her babies.  So, needless to say, she came knocking on our door and we were happy to oblige and give her and her puppies some food.  But, it was HOW she did it that was so amazing.  She wasn’t the most friendly dog and although we were unsure of her at first, we quickly admired her motherhood skills!  My husband and I were in the front yard and saw her coming on the other side of the street with all of her puppies in tow, I think there were 5 of them.  She stopped right across the street from us, turned around, had a chat with her puppies and then proceeded across the street to see us as the puppies stayed on the other side following their mother’s orders.  It brought tears to both my husband and I.  I ran in the house and got a bowl of dog food for her (we had one dog at that time – Sammy man).  I brought the bowl out and she was waiting and having conversation with my husband – or should I say my husband was trying to get her to let him pet her but she wasn’t too fond of his idea.  I put the bowl of food down and she took a look at it, smelled it, looked at us as if to say – be right back – and off she went across the street to gather up her puppies.  Back across they come, babies following momma…and she showed them the food and they started to eat as she watched.  Once the baby’s bellies were full, momma ate some – she needed more than she would eat as she was worried about the puppies – they were done and she gathered up her babies and off they went back to their house.  Wow right?  I will NEVER forget that day.  After the puppies started to get bigger, they kept getting out of the fenced yard at their house and running the neighborhood.  After asking the “owner” if we could find homes for them, he agreed to let us so that they didn’t get run over in the road but asked us to leave the black one.  We told him it was too late on him….which was our Maximus…he was already in our backyard being fathered by our Sammy.  Sammy taught Max everything he knew and then some and they both lived happily ever after.  Sammy died a few years back of old age at 15.  Max mourned him for the rest of his life on this earth.  Then, about a year ago, Max started showing signs of doggie dementia.  It’s a real disease if you didn’t know.  We took him to the vet and the vet said there are meds but most dogs do fine, to not move the furniture and keep everything as normal as possible for him.  The disease progressed and in his last few months, he really was suffering in his own way.  We were suffering watching him but we quickly told ourselves, it’s not our comfort level but his that mattered.  He started losing his way, stood standing in corners and started losing control of his bowels, not because he wasn’t house trained but because I truly believe, he couldn’t remember where he was or where he should go.  His eyes started to show signs of lost sight.  He would give us the blankest looks, he was lost in there somewhere.  But, we didn’t want to let him go.  There wasn’t one big thing that made the decision for us.  It was an accumulation of all of them.  We had a vet appointment planned for him to have his thyroid levels looked at again just to see if they had changed.  But, on the way to the vet in the vet mobile – the old truck – my husband and I started to cry and let it all out.  We knew it was time.  He was ready and we knew.  God told us to give him to Him so he could run and play with Sammy and be FREE of the horrible disease that took him from us.  We miss that Maxy boy.  He was a true blessing to our lives.  He was an amazing dog, he trotted like a horse – it was so cute – he loved to run and he was so fast, he would just stride.  My mom always called him wolfie cause he kind of looked like a wolf.  He was part black lab, chow and akita.  He was furry like an Akita and chow mixed together, he looked like an akita though with a big purple tongue.  Isn’t it amazing what you remember?  It’s taken me about a month and a half to write about this and it still wasn’t without tears.  But, my  point is, having a dog for ALL of his life is such a blessing, seeing them change like a baby does, enjoying all of their little quirks and love.  Do you have a senior dog or a memory of one?  I would love to hear about him or her.  Thank you for listening to my story of Maximus.

That is my waggs and whiskers for today,


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