Friday, August 21, 2009
You know what I don’t like? I don’t like “aha” experiences like the one that hit me earlier this week.
For those of you who haven’t been here long-I love my pets. Pepper our 6 year-old slightly off-balance feline and Sunshine, our 13-year-old lab mix.
This is about my darling Sunshine. As I just mentioned, our 65 pound furry love child is 13. She’s been slowing down, a lot, lately. Used to be that the two of us would run 2.5 miles most days of the week at 5:30 a.m... Then I couldn’t run, so we turned to power-walking (or hobbling, whichever was most physically possible on any given day). This continued until the fateful “foot incident” 3 years ago.
My doing, not hers. Regardless, I didn’t recover until she was too old to walk that distance ever again. Suddenly, Sunshine could only go 1.5 miles-then the same distance with rest stops. Since I wear a pedometer and walked in place during her breathers I discovered I was walking almost 4 miles to her 1-1/2. That was okay-who couldn’t use more exercise?
Then at the beginning of the year-her mile + became once around our block (1/2 mile). About 4 months ago I found that if she got half way around it was a good day. I take her out, bring her back and give her a bowl of ice, fluff her bed and then put on my IPod shuffle and continue walking for another 45 minutes or so.
We started giving her joint supplements.
Then came this week. We received an e-mail from our vet saying Sunshine was due for 2 booster shots and a senior exam. I waited for the latest round of bathroom remodeling crew members to show up and called to make an appointment.
Normally on this particular day, our son Adam is off and he would have been at home to help me get her into the car. Honestly-NORMAL has always meant Sunshine jumping into the car, running out and pulling me into the office. Yes, she loves the staff and they love her-so she’s been the atypical dog who loves to visit the vet.
This time however, I put on her leash and opened the door.
Her tail went down between her hind legs and she just looked up at me. I pulled up the front seat-thinking she needed more room to maneuver in-didn’t work. Then I put it all the way back, thinking the front seat might be easier. It wasn’t.
Next I put her back in the house and angled my car doors so that they were right against the curb so that only a tiny step would be needed to walk into the car. Didn’t work-not at all.
I called the vet and explained what had been going on for over 25 minutes. What I was hoping for was a suggestion on how to get our old but treasured baby into the car, instead what I heard was “maybe we should re-schedule your appointment for a day when Mr. Nadel or Adam will be home to help get our poor dear into the car.”
I get it. All too well. Sigh.
Once their beautiful souls are in our lives, they're there forever.