Yesterday was one of the hardest of my life. Saying goodbye to you. Taking you to that clinic knowing we would be leaving without you and never have you with us again. Your eyes watching me, trusting me, loving me. I hope I didn’t let you down.
The house is too quiet today. For such a little fellow, you filled my life. You were with us for only eight years, a short but bright life.
I remember driving to pick you up. I was excited and as so often happens, you chose us. You came with us without looking back and I don’t remember an occasion over the past eight years when you showed any fear.
You confidently looked out on the world and you took me by storm.
From the beginning you stubbornly taught me that you would not tolerate closed doors. We compromised. You slept outside our bedroom door. You were happy. From that moment on you taught me to understand what you wanted and what you didn’t want. It didn’t mean you always got it, but you certainly tried!
You entertained us and brought life into our home.
2 years after having you we brought Zena into our family and you lovingly accepted her. You became her playmate, her parent, her protector and without any trace of jealousy you let her sleep in your bed and play with your toys.
You had such a big heart.
But your big heart was not enough to keep you going with all the health trials we have been through with you.
You bravely dealt with kneecaps that slipped out, shoulders that were sore and regular ear infections. For seven years these issues were painful for you at times, but the times in between were pain free and good.
Recently though, the pain has been a constant with you. We saw it in your eyes. The distress of constant itching, ear infections, the discomfort of arthritis. We saw it and did our best to help.
We tried special food, shampoos, medicines. We saw you struggle and it broke our hearts to see our brave boy dealing with all of this. You had such a gentle nature and you deserved a stronger body.
I thought we were coping, not winning, but coping.
When I woke today you greeted me and brought me Big Dog, I didn’t know it would be for the last time and how I ache this morning as I get up and you’re not there to greet me.
We took our walk and we had a good time, though you couldn’t do the full walk any more. Again, I had no idea it would be the last walk we took together.
I washed the sores around your face and we spent lunch together, you cuddling up on my lap as usual.
It was then that I noticed that your ear was worse and you had scratched it until it was bleeding. I called the vet and made an appointment.
By itself it was treatable. Taken with everything else it was an indication that your body was breaking down. How much could we put you through? How much pain, suffering, medications and procedures could we expect you to have?
If by a surgical procedure we could have made you better, we would have. I knew walking into that surgery that I would face the same question from the vet that he had asked me the last time I saw him. How was your quality of life? This time as I looked into your beautiful brown trusting eyes I couldn’t say it was good. It was deteriorating.
Suddenly the decision was made and everything happened so fast. You came home for a big dinner and a lot of spoiling and to give us a chance to say goodbye.
Even now I find it difficult to grasp. You are no longer here. The house is quiet. I can put the television on without you rushing to the screen.
If I could bring you back I would, but I would want you back healthy and fit.
As I walked from that clinic I wanted to rush back and take the decision back, to have you with me again. If we could turn back time, I would go back eight years my little pal.
But I can’t. We only had a short time together but you were so special to me. A furry soul mate.
I want you to know my friend that you have been a great companion. You could not have been better.
You have been a great pal.
You have been my partner in this blog and great company throughout your years with our family.
When I struggled with my health you would curl up beside me, undemanding and giving.
We will always remember your quirky ways.
We will always remember the way you howled if you felt you were being ignored.
We will remember the way you loved television and I will feel a pain when your favourite shows come on. Who will keep the bad guys away now?
We will remember the way you hated getting your paws wet and always insisted on walking on paths, even in the garden.
We will remember the way you always sat on your mat with that expectant look on your face whenever it was time for a treat.
We will remember the way you enjoyed your occasional sausage treat and the way you loved going into the village and I’m sorry that we didn’t take you more. I had hoped to take you when the better weather came but it was not to be.
Through this last night Zena, The Princess, who you looked after so well has been crying. Her crying turned to howls early this morning and as I got up comforting her I found the tears coming again. It hurts not to have you here. We all miss you
My precious boy, I will miss you for always. We have a Zac-shaped hole in our lives and it will always be there.
For those of you who have followed this blog I thank you for your encouragement and support.
This blog was truly inspired by Zac and his sometimes solemn ways.
He had a way of looking at me and the things around him which such a deep and thoughtful expression and I used to wonder what he was thinking, hence this blog.
This will be my last blog. In memory of my wonderful pal.
I have had other dogs but none as special to me as Zac.
Don’t look back my little Pal, look forward to the next adventure and know that if possible we will be with you again one day.
From the one who is proud to have been loved by Zac The All Black – a very wise and gentle Tibbie.
Beloved and I are having the talk.
Not the talk about sex which you people have
The talk about life…… And death.
You see things are getting pretty hard for me at the moment
I have arthritis and the pills help with some of the pain but not all
I can cope with pain
I still enjoy my walk in the morning. Beloved goes very slowly and although I am limping by the time I get back to the house the vet has said it is good for me to exercise.
The Prednisone caused my muscles to waste and that didn’t help. All of a sudden from being a stiff Tibbie with a little arthritis I have gone to a Tibbie with a great deal of arthritis and overweight. Although the weight is coming off.
It is the itching that is the problem.
It seems to have got worse.
I cannot stop scratching, licking and biting.
It has never been this bad.
Beloved had to try my medication on every other day because of a growth on my gums but then the itch took over and now my paws are bleeding and I have sores on my tummy and around my mouth.
So we are having the talk.
She loves me.
She doesn’t want me to suffer.
I love her.
I am happy walking a little bit.
I am happy having my cuddles, although sometimes the itch even makes those uncomfortable.
I am happy with my meals and my treats.
But the itch is making me miserable and the pain and infections are increasing.
Beloved is looking into my eyes and we are trying to work it out.
I know she will be sad when the time comes. I will be sad, but I will also look back on a life of sausages and treats, cuddles and love and I will be at peace.
I wish I could talk out loud and share how I’m feeling, but all I can do is look back into her eyes and together we’ll work it out.
Today the sores are around my mouth and my ear infection has started up again
We have to talk.
This month is certainly the month for awards and I thank my friends Mollie & Alfie for the latest one. If you don’t know Mollie or Alfie they I recommend you take a trip over to their blog and have a good laugh.
So seven things about myself:
1. I tend to walk on paths and will only go on the grass for the ‘necessities’ of life. When out with Beloved I like to walk on the road but for some reason she won’t let me do this.
2. I am told I can be stubborn. This is based on Beloved’s judgement and although she is usually almost as wise and I am and I know her to be truthful I think she has come to this conclusion because I do not answer to the command ‘Come’ and sometimes at the reserve I will choose not to walk any further and will demand that we leave at a certain gate. Does this make me stubborn?
3. I am a pushover for puppies. It is rather embarrassing but I find myself getting very sloppy and protective over the pups in the park. They are just SO cute!
4. Babies in pushchairs are one of my favourite things too. Have you ever tasted them? I recommend them, all sorts of goodies on their hands and faces. Sometimes their Mums and Dads aren’t too cool about it but mostly I do it so gently they hardly notice.
5. Whilst I ignore the command ‘Come’ (which I think is rather rude and peremptory), I find I cannot disobey the command ‘Sit & Stay’. I can be enjoying a wonderful time somewhere having no intention of leaving that spot and ignoring all the ‘Comes’ from Beloved and her beloved but just one sit and I am, despite myself, bottom on the ground and waiting to be led away. It is an odd weakness in me which I think I must have inherited through my twisted bloodline.
6. I live close to a village and my new resolution is to force Beloved to take me out for coffee at the local shops more often. I love people watching.
7. I am a telly-addict. You probably do know this about me if you have read my posts, but every evening I keep my eye on the ‘box’. I like lying upside down and watching it with my head back or sitting on Beloved’s lap watching. I used to have my own chair when we lived in the big house, but now I have to share a chair with Beloved. It has pros and cons.
Now comes the hard part. I have to nominate seven blogs to receive this award but I suspect all the blogs I know already have it!! So I will nominate seven and if you have it already, wonderful and if you don’t – even more wonderful 🙂
3. Pup Felicity
Okay, okay, I do know that’s eight and not seven, but I couldn’t leave out my favourite white Maremma’s and Clowie, you probably have this award already but I think you’re beautiful so you can have it again.
To everyone out there who follows me a huge thanks and if you haven’t this award and I missed you out, I’m sorry. If you have this award and I included you, enjoy being appreciated 🙂
A little while ago I talked about Beloved having a birthday and the family getting together. It was great.
Now, Ajay, number two son is preparing to return to Indonesia and our family is scattered again. Being a Tibbie who likes his pack all together in one room this is sad to me.
I thought though that I would take the opportunity to introduce you to my extended family in France.
Ooh! La La!
And yes, I shall also pepper this introduction with the odd French word and be very pretentious.
Most of you have never heard about my French cousins. To be honest, I have never met my French cousins. And to be even more honest they are English cousins who have moved to France to live. Being a very truthful Tibbie I would not like to mislead you.
These are two West Highland White Terriers, a brother and sister who in the photographs look very alike to me. They are true Terriers and they are most certainly very white. Their names are Boodle and Dunthorne.
For those of you who do not know, and I have to confess to having been ignorant of this myself, Boodle & Dunthorne is a jewellery store in the United Kingdom. I gather it is quite a famous one and has been in existence since 1798, which, when you think about it is only ten years after Europeans migrants arrived here in Australia.
Their Beloved is Shelfie. Shelfie isn’t French either, her mother is German, her father was English and like Beloved she has lived all over the place. People have no sense of territory any more, it is very disturbing not to mention confusing.
Beloved’s beloved and Tony, Shelfie’s husband were brothers.
Tony was a brave man who was diagnosed with a horrible disease called Parkinson’s when he was quite young. Despite that, a few years ago he came over to visit us in Australia from England where they were then living and we had a fine old time.
I have to admit that we were sometimes very naughty with Tony. My joints were not quite so bad then and I could still run quite briskly, certainly enough to evade Beloved and her beloved!
Tony was warned not to open the front door because I had a tendency to run out and escape but one day he forgot and I seized the moment and led The Princess out on an adventure.
Beloved’s beloved drove home to see Tony on his motorised invalid scooter driving around the street trying to catch The Princess and I who were having a fine old game!
We were soon caught and went home but we’d had a lot of fun. Good old Tony! I hope he enjoyed it too.
He rather fell in love with Australia and if he hadn’t had Parkinson’s I think he might have quite enjoyed returning for a longer holiday, but instead when he went back to the United Kingdom he and Shelfie and my two English cousins went to live in France and Voila! now they are my French cousins because it has more of a ‘cachet’ to it!
Then Tony got sicker and sicker and life became too hard and miserable for him. When he died we were very sad about it. We have great memories of him and his braveness and when I think my arthritis is painful and sore I think of Tony and realise how brave he was not to complain and I try not to complain either.
Shelfie, Boodle and Dunthorne remain in France and seem to be having many exciting adventures driving to England and staying with friends.
But being a Tibbie of great wisdom I know that they must be very sad and still miss Tony a great deal.
I know that in the last few years Shelfie had to look after Tony which was hard for her, but she was willing to do it because she loved him. It makes me grateful that I have Beloved who loves me and who will look after me when I am sick.
I know too that Tony loved Boodle and Dunthorne and that they gave him so much pleasure. When he couldn’t do very much he could watch them play and have fun in the garden and it would make him smile.
One day I hope that the clever people find a cure for things like Parkinson’s Disease so that families like Tony, Shelfie, Boodle and Dunthorne do not suffer through this horrible disease any more because as you know I am a Tibbie who likes to watch and one thing I have learnt from watching my French cousins and others in a similar situation is that everyone in the family is impacted through a serious illness.
I am sure that Boodle and Dunthorne still miss their Tony and would be happy to see him come through the door but Shelfie is keeping them busy and helping them through their grief.
As you can see from the photographs, life for them is pretty similar to life for us in OZ except that we have less flowers on our beds! I think I would get on well with Auntie Shelfie and I think I might be able to get a sausage treat out of her!
Although I have never met them I feel a certain ‘esprit de corps’ when I see their pictures and read about their trips. I think that they should start a blog too because I’m sure they would have a great deal to say.
I would love to know how they are getting on with their French. Have they made a ‘faux pas’ since living in a foreign country?
Is Boodle a ‘femme fatale’ locally? And do they eat ‘haute cuisine’ all the time?
I have a lot of questions for them and wish we could meet them but I know that the trip to Australia from France for a dog would be just too difficult for a holiday so I will make do with the photographs.
So with the ‘mise on scène’ set, I will leave you with these images of my french cousins pampered lifestyle and I will go and find my big soft cushion bed and have my morning nap because it will be lunch before you know it and I must have a rest in order to prepare for chewing.
Au revoir and bonne journee.
This week seems to be the week for awards 🙂
I am a lucky Tibbie and feel very validated this week. Thank you all.
My latest gift is the ‘Thinking of You’ award.
Isn’t that a nice one? Someone, somewhere is thinking of ME 🙂
It’s a very pretty award too. Beloved loves pansies and talks about their pretty faces, I kid you not! I acknowledge their prettiness but think I should perhaps begin a sausage award. If only you could have scratch and smell on the computer but perhaps that would be too cruel.
On Saturday’s when Beloved takes me to the reserve I can smell the sausage sizzle but can’t get to it. I know!! How bad is that? Every Saturday it’s the same.
What is worse, my pal Roxie has to walk through the village to get to the dog park and she stops at the sausage sizzle on the way home. She did it once and they gave her a sausage. Gave it to her! Her owner didn’t buy it. Now she stops every time she passes and gets one. She’s been walking that road for years and never realised she could get a sausage before – doh!
I’ve tried to pull Beloved in that direction but she will not go even though it won’t cost her a thing. Sometimes Beloved is a little slow to understand, I love her but…..
Anyway, I digress.
Many thanks to my friends at Texas, A Cat in New York for this award. I really appreciate their thoughts, especially as they have had a sad time losing a pal recently and we have been thinking of them.
The Thinking of You Award would like me to tell you about seven things that I love and I think about daily. Here goes:
I realise that there is a theme here but I felt I needed to be honest!
Now, to pass this award on to seven other bloggers who I am thinking about and who haven’t received it (to the best of my knowledge):
1. Wanderlust – this is Beloved’s son so I am often thinking about him.
2. Ash – Beloved’s other son who I am always thinking about.
3. Clowie’s Corner – Who I am often thinking about – all that blonde fur 🙂
4. Fostrickson – got to admire two dogs surviving with a cat called Odin.
5. Jasper’s Doggy World – Thinking of you in the rain today
6. Dakota’s Den – Dakota gets lots of cool things to test
7. Mollie & Alfie – they are running a great photo competition, I’m not trying to sway the judging, I don’t have a funny picture to send although Beloved hasn’t given up looking yet.
So those are my seven that I am thinking of today and hope you all have a good day.
Here, as in New Zealand with Jasper it is raining so no walk this morning. Having had breakfast all that is left to me is to nap.
Because Beloved was a little busy and her head wasn’t very clear (she admits it so I’m not being nasty), she has left it a little long to thank Angelswhisper for the lovely award that she nominated ME for.
Thank you so much I love your blog and I am so honoured that any of you follow this humble little Tibbie and his ramblings.
Then today I find I have been nominated for another beautiful award by my pal Easy The Grazie Award.
Thanks Easy and I appreciate the support and encouragement.
Forgive me if I include the two in one post.
SOMETHING ABOUT ME
Hmmmm. Something which you don’t already know about me could be hard because I am a very honest and open Tibbie who has shared much about himself with you but I thought you might be interested in learning a little more about the Tibetan Terrier as a breed as we are not too common.
1. Although my breed is called Tibetan Terriers we are not Terriers. We were called terriers by Europeans who travelled to Tibet and for some reason we reminded them of their terriers back in Europe and voila – we were mis-named!
2. As you can see I am learning some french phrases in order to impress a couple of the ladies down at the dog park. I am already fluent in Dog and Beloved-speak.
3. The Tibetan Terrier is able to guard, herd and be a suitable companion dog. I have decided to do one thing really well so I have dropped the guarding and herding part of the job and focussed on being a companion which I am really good at. I know this because Beloved is never alone. She calls me her velcro-dog.
4. In Tibet we are called ‘Tsang Apso’ which means roughly ‘shaggy dog’. This does describe me well and if you see some of the dogs in Tibet it is obvious that they do not have to suffer baths, brushes and clipping.
5. In Tibet we were considered very valuable and the people who owned us did not give us away very often and would not sell us so all of us current Tibetan’s can trace our lines back to the same few foundation dogs in Europe.
6. Recent DNA testing has shown that the Tibetan Terrier is descended from the most ancient dog breeds. But I am a humble Tibbie and I do not let this go to my head.
7. The Tibetan Terrier evolved over hundreds of years of harsh conditions. We were called ‘little people’ and valued by the monks and the families we belonged too, pretty much like today. Beloved highly values me and often tells me that I am a big baby.
8. Selling a Tibetan Terrier was considered to be selling your good luck so we were not sold only ever given as gifts. The first Tibetan Terrier to go to Europe was given to a doctor for saving the life of a Tibetan person. This has changed today which I think is rather sad, but on the other hand if we don’t get some more Tibetan Terriers out of Tibet the in-breeding cycle will continue and get worse.
9. We were treated like children in the family and would assist in taking care of the property, the flocks and the herds. Sometimes we would be sent to accompany a traveller home because we were known to be sure-footed and reliable. Sadly this is a trait I have not inherited and as Beloved tells anyone I am unlikely to find my way home from next door!
10. We had read that there are no Tibetan Terriers left in Tibet but have recently found that this is not true. So anyone who wants to see us Tibbies in our original habitat can take a trip to Tibet and find us there. There are also quite a few in the Tibetan refugee camps in Nepal.
I would like to nominate:
Via the Grazie Award I send a big sloppy kiss/lick to:
Beloved shares your blogs with me and we both enjoy them so much. Now after all that hard work I will go back to my nap.
Thanks guys and meet you again on the blogosphere soon 🙂