Friday, July 18, 2014

Diesel's Day

Our Boxer, Diesel, is almost 12 years old. Which is pretty good for a Boxer, especially one that was diagnosed with a serious cardiac condition when he was 3 and a second one a few years later.

Diesel is my heart dog. He has been with me since he was 18 months old. It was just him and me then, and he's seen me through many changes. I went from being single, to married, to a mother. He's said goodbye to two doggie sisters and has been an outstanding foster brother to more than 25 dogs. I love this dog. I adore this dog.

But in the past little while, he's also been diagnosed with degenerative myelopathy. This is a total asshole conditon. Its similar to Multiple Sclerosis in humans. It's a nervous system conditon, basically the messages are no longer making it from his spinal cord to his hind legs. It starts with some toe dragging and knuckling under, and standing with legs crossed, but progressively gets worse and all strength and control is lost. As of now he's not able to walk more than a few steps and can barely stand up. He's beginning to drag his back end around. His urinary continence is weakening. He can't poop without falling into his mess. He's lost so much muscle tone and has gotten very skinny in the back end. My husband made him a wheelchair, and we have a special harness to help us carry him. But it's gotten to the point where we can't deny the inevitable anymore. It pains me to say it, but Diesel's time is almost over. At this point it's over as soon as the vet can fit us in. 

But, on or before the day that will be Diesel's last, I am going to make sure he gets the following:

  1. Eggs.
  2. A cheeseburger. 
  3. Pepperoni. 
  4. Sour Patch Kids. 
  5. Beer. 
  6. Attention, love, kisses, hugs from all four of us and his boxer sister and foster sister. 

This situation is horrible for me. I am a wreck and I can't even breathe through my nose, I've been crying so much. I don't know how I'll live without this guy. I don't know how long it will take me to feel normal again after he goes to the Rainbow Bridge. I know all the stuff. I know it's inevitable, I know it's the kindest thing we can do for him, I know he has finished his work here, I know he's lost his dignity and we can't keep forcing him.  I've comforted so many people in this situation before. But when it's your turn it's different. I am just gutted. And it's going to be a long, long time before I feel better. 

But one thing that will never, ever change is that Diesel is my heart dog. He always will be. I will have a tattoo done of his nose on my arm, which is where it's been while we slept for many nights in the past ten years. 

I'm so sorry this had to happen to you, Diesel. You are the best dog that ever lived. You deserved more. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm so, so sorry. Diesel is lucky to have been loved so well by you...and you are lucky to have been loved so well by him.

    My heart goes out to you during this difficult time. :-(