Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Chapters end.

Back to the dark ages of posting directly to blogger since Windows Live Writer no longer on speaking terms. Side question, if I allow myself seduced into upgrading to Windows 10 on my desktop is there detente?

"He's a mean drunk, I'll say that for him." Dr. Carlson eyed us wryly. "Once we get him out of his kennel, he's fine but he fights us tooth, claw and nail while he's in there!"

Deucie was three. He and Zan had wandered off our 14 acres because that's obviously not to enough to hold the interest of a dog when there is a construction site right across the road. Something over there leaked antifreeze and he came home staggering, sick as a . . .

The sweet odor and inebriated wallering told me immediately what I was looking at, an almost dead dog walking.

Not the first time. Deucie'd been born dead so I guess he was kind of used to the condition. Arron had rubbed and breathed life into the tiny cold body. He was the last of five puppies we could get out of their dying momma.

With all this dying going on, you might wonder if I should ever own a dog. The vet who put Deucie down yesterday was the first person in ten years to give me absolution for the mistake of first breeding my adorable but mongrel bitch to her equally adorable and mongrel unwed boyfriend.

And, not getting an ultrasound though her tiny body bulged like she'd swallowed a watermelon. Mares, I know something about. I used to have a very good idea if they were carrying correctly and I was never too far off on the arrival dates of the young ones.

All I knew for sure about dogs is that we are over populated with them therefore they must birthe relatively easy. That's probably true of most. It wasn't for mine.

So, anyway Deucie. We hand raised those little beasts. Lost a blue girl who looked like her momma to something that acted like Parvo, tested negative but they treated her for it anyway. She'd had the first puppy shot she was eligible for, I'm not THAT neglectful and no other dog got it. Cost me over a thousand $$ and a lost pup  . . .

Everyone else found homes. Arron wanted to keep the black runt. Heartbroken over the loss of my home girl and then her little daughter, my numb heart did not care one way or the other.

He grew up with a minimum of training, we thought he was too weird and neurotic to learn much. Boy, did we miss the call on that one. Almost but not quite too late.

I raised Quarter Ponies on that spread along with keeping some head of for sale or trade stock and a penful of training horses. The dogs hung out. I was watchful that they minded themselves around the horses as best I could They'd run through the pens at will and one day I look up and there's Deucie running hellbent for leather toward Chica, my boss of bosses mare.

He approaches from the side at a dead run, grabs a jawful of long thick black tail and goes swinging wildly from side to side.

"DEUCIE NOOO!!" Top of my lungs screams affects not horse or dog. She pins her ears in an annoyed but not murderous way, lifts a threatening "that's enough now" hind foot. He drops off, runs away grinning like a mad fool.

What? Have they done this before? Oh yeah, says Arron. He does it all the time. All the horses but mostly Chica. I yell at the little shit but he doesn't pay any attention to me.

It was until he earned the name Three Tooth Deuce from someone losing patience with the game that he finally quit. Had nothing to do with the pain or danger of getting a tooth knocked out of his head. Dog simply could not get as good a grip anymore and the good tail swinging times were over.

If you ride with Axel and I, my blue eyed blue merle border collie, you may notice he's not allowed to cross fencelines of any kind. The way to stop bad habits is to not let them start in the first place.

When we gave up the place and moved to town I was worried most about how Deuce would handle the transition, Claustrophobic to the point of sometimes losing his tiny mind and not super interested in people outside his immediate family (Arron) I didn't know how he'd take to the sights, sounds and proximity of so darned many people. Turns out it was me that had the problem with that.

Moving into our city duplex I am trying to keep eyes on dogs, husky young men moving boxes of fragile and or necessary things never to be found again and I did not have enough eyes for the job. There were a couple kids running around too and I thought sure Deucie'd bite one before it was all over.

I finally find him in the stone walled fireplace room laying over backwards getting his tummy rubbed by said unbitten child. Well, okay then.

Everything we ever asked of him, including me giggling my silly ass off encouraging him to "bite daddy's face, arrrrgh, arrrgh, arrrgh!" he'd come through with flying colors. He learned to walk on a harness when he was eight years old as his little bullet head could slide backwards out of any collar. After a couple gymnastic panics, he decided the leash, harness and walks were good things. Learned a lot quicker than Axel who still thinks leashes are highest of baloney insults.

We took him to camp last year first time ever when we couldn't find a dog sitter. Now we have strange environments, dogs and a LOT of people who are going to want to stop by and rub a doggie head. He ate it up. He pottied on his leash which he'd never had to do before in his life. Nine years old.

Doc Carlsen pulled him through the antifreeze poisoning incident. He said then no way to tell how much damage the organs had suffered or how long we'd get to keep the little guy around, Seven more years. He outlived his buddies, Zan and Cesaer. Was entirely peeved at Axel's arrival, never really got over that. Thought Kisses a cute pain in the behind but you know, a girl so . . . neutered or not, he knew what girls were. Mean drunk like his momma and well, the girls, daddy?

When things started going wrong for him this summer I paid what I consider my karmic debts to JD, Ozzie, Indigo and Zan. I did so many things wrong with and for those dogs. I didn't know grocery store dog food had turned mostly poisonous, fed my dogs cheap whatever's on sale garbage til Ozzie almost died of food allergies. Zan taught me to either build tight fences or not take your eyes off your best dog for even five minutes,

We took Deucie to the best recommended vet we knew about. They did a crazy hail Mary surgery to reroute his urethra and when we had to take him back a couple months later to have the ungodly painful crystals flushed again, I knew we were in big trouble.

He quit eating. The stuff the vet said would save his life he wouldn't even look at. Wholistic dog food costing more than our week's grocery budget interested him for a minute. When force feeding resulted in it being ejected at both ends that was it. He was so tired.

The goofy bouncy guy who could jump high enough to nip my elbow evading my side kick correction with ease was gone. He stopped going upstairs to sleep with us.

There comes a point when you consider your options and you have to decide whose interests you are operating in. Your animal who looks at you out of huge trusting suffering eyes or your own, sparing yourself a hard reality? Time is finite for us all. I've stood beside two women burying their human children and I will not tell you my grief compares to theirs. It does not.

It is real. A physical aching in my heart, a nausea in the pit of my stomach. A chapter ended. I always think I am prepared for that. I never am.

Rest in peace, Deucie dog. See ya at the Bridge.

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