Friday, August 24, 2007

Death of a dog



This is the last photo I have of our dear Collie, MacIntosh. I thought I had all the time in the world to take pictures of him, since he was only seven. As you may have read when I featured him, he had epilepsy. The poor boy had it for five of his seven years. Before he went on medication, it was terrible. Sometimes he would have several seizures in a day. Then he would go a long time and have them again. There was no rhyme or reason. Once he began taking medicine, he had far fewer. But still they would happen occasionally. The medication came with a possible toll and we accepted that. We felt it was better for him to have a shorter life than a life filled with horrific seizures. But the vet told us that he didn't think he died of a side-effect. He wasn't sure what the problem was, but it was possibly a brain tumor. We could have done tests, but they may not have been conclusive, and it just didn't seem fair to him to have to go through them. He hadn't eaten in several days, but at first that didn't send up any alarms, because he quite often didn't want food. Sometimes he just wanted "people food." Sometimes, the meal he ate one day, he wouldn't touch the next. This is just the way he was and had been for ages. He drank tremendous quantities of water, and we had decided to have him tested for diabetes. Yet, thirst is a side effect of one of the drugs, so even that didn't concern us terribly. But in this last week, all his problems just seemed to combine to overwhelm his poor body. The day our vet came to do his annual farm visit, he was going to give MacIntosh his shots, but a hour before the visit, he disappeared. Even that he had done once in a great while, but this time he didn't come home. The vet thought he had perhaps gone off to die, as animals are known to do sometimes. We had an uneasy night, and my gosh, the next morning he was home. At first, we were elated, but as the day wore on, we saw that he wasn't going to get better. Instead of crawling off to die, he came home to do so. His breathing was labored and we could see various signs of decline. Our dear vet came by after his long day, and very gently put our boy down. In just ten months time, we have gone from a household with four dogs to two. Our Annie died last October.

MacIntosh was the gentlest, most loving dog who gracefully put up with his medical problems, as all dogs do. They accept. Every dog's death is a great, great sadness, but it is especially hard when a dog is still young. We just thought he would have more years.

MacIntosh
March 3, 2000 - August 22, 2007

22 comments:

  1. Nan, I'm so sorry and grieve that such a good and brave companion has gone too soon.

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  2. Oh, dear sweet Nan. This is such a loving tribute to your dear Mac. I have tears streaming down my face as I feel the deep sadness coming through your words. I can't help but remember how terribly sad we were when dear old Sidney died. It nearly broke my heart in two.

    Love and hugs to you and your family. I'm so very sorry for your sad news.

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  3. So sad. I still get weepy over the dog I lost almost 2 years ago. She was my first. My condolences you you and yours.

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  4. My heart goes out to you, in your sorrow. To lose a beloved pet is always so hard.

    Many hugs to you...

    Mari-Nanci

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  5. I'm so very sorry to hear your news. Having loved and lost a few sweet animals in my lifetime, I know how sad your family must be.

    My condolences to all.

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  6. Oh, Nan, I am so very sorry. I could feel your sadness at the loss but could also feel your joy at having had Mac in your lives.

    My dear Maggie died at eight, and I still get teary when I think of her love and companioship.

    My love to all of you.

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  7. My sympathies to you over the loss of your dear dog. They are such members of the family and there is such a hole in the space that they occupied in our lives.

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  8. Nan, I'm so, so, sorry to hear about your loss of MacIntosh. You've written a beautiful tribute to him.

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  9. Their lives are way too short, but oh the pleasure they give us in their short time with us. Good bye dear Macintosh!

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  10. Nan, I'm so sorry. I remember how I felt when Ben, our Border Collie died. He had diabetes and bore it so patiently, but I was devastated when he died. My thoughts are with you.

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  11. Nan,
    I am so sorry to hear about your precious, sweet MacIntosh -- what a sweet, sweet dog; they become such vital members of our families and create such a void when they leave us, so many times like yours, far too early. My condolences to your entire family.

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  12. Dear Nan,
    I'm so sorry to hear of your unexpected loss of MacIntosh. My thoughts are with you and your family during this sad time.
    Hugs, Robin

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  13. Nan...

    I'm so sorry to hear about your Max...I still remember how kind you were to me last year when my dear cat Ada died..thinking of you...

    (((((Hugs)))))

    Jeanie/KY

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  14. Oh Nan, I'm so sorry to read of Mac's passing. You have my deep sympathy and understanding. love and hugs,

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  15. Hi Nan - I am sorry that you've lost one of your beloved pets. I know how hard that is - they are a member of the family. This post was a lovely tribute to your sweet dog.

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  16. ((((((Nan))))), I'm sorry I've only just seen the sad news about Mac. Like many others here I have lost many pets over the years and know how devastating it is. Lots of love and big hugs to you.

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  17. I am sending you and your family all good thoughts and love. It is so hard to lose a dearly loved pet...so hard...so many tears.....Macintosh sounds like a wonderful dog....I am sure he is helping out in heaven this very minute. Thank goodness he was in your life....

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  18. Nan - you're heartfelt tribute to your dog is what we all feels towards ours. Thanks for being so good with words.

    Dogs' lives are too short. Their only fault, really. ~Agnes Sligh Turnbull

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  19. Dear Nan, I told you I was behind in my blog-reading and so I've only just read about MacIntosh. Like Les says above, tears are streaming down my face, because I feel for you. I'm so sorry to hear this news (and not to have read it sooner).I send you my love.

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  20. My heart cried with you when I read this. I am catching up on blogs and reading your posts from over the weekend. I know how hard it is to loose a pet. They are a real part of the family! MacIntosh will always be there in spirit in your heart.

    Cyber hugs ~

    Heidi

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  21. Nan, I just don't know what to say. This is a beautifully written tribute to the bravery of a good friend.

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  22. Thank you, Clair. It means a lot to me that you came to read it. He was such a good boy.

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Now that I am a grandmother, it seems that I am often late in replying to your most-appreciated comments. But I read them as soon as they come in, and I will write as soon as I can. Please do come back and check. I love these blogging conversations.
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