Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Once in awhile something happens that knocks the blogging wind right out of your sails. For me, it was the death on Monday of our family dog, Suka. She'd been with us for sixteen years--since March of 1991. She's seen us through all number of family ups and downs and countless boyfriends of my sister. (Okay, me too.) She's been hit by a car three times--twice by the same lady. Each time she rebounded with aplomb, because she had much more barking at the wind, cat-herding, and furtive farting in the living room to do. Sure she'd grown arthritic, deaf, and incontinent--but who were we to hold those age-related milestones against her?

A few weeks ago, a walnut-sized tumor began to grow on her hindquarter. By last weekend, it was the size of a large grapefruit. It had also begun to supperate. She only hobbled up and down stairs with great difficulty and would circle endlessly, whining, before collapsing on or near her bed. She'd begun turning her nose up to food, even fried eggs and liverwurst. The vet, already amazed at her longevity for a Springer Spaniel, offered options. But everyone knew that another surgery for such an elderly dog (almost 119 in dog years) would be extremely stressful for her. And since the cancer would likely spread, even once the tumor was gone, her overall prognosis was dim. So my parents made the difficult decision to put her to sleep.

My brother, sister, and I said good-bye to her on Sunday. By Monday night, she was gone. We'll miss you, Suka Bazooka. But we were lucky to have you for so long.


(I almost forgot to add that even on Sunday, she still hauled herself up to territorially piddle over the place on the lawn that my Dad occasionally uses as his own personal Zone of Urination. I think I referenced my Dad's efforts to lessen the burden on their septic system in an earlier blog post ... My Dad. Promoting Public Urination Since 1950.)

39 comments:

  1. I'm so sorry! Losing a pet is almost like losing a child. They add so much to our lives, don't they? My childhood pet was a cat, and had to be put down after I moved away from home. She was very old as well...probably 12 oor 13. I wasn't able to get home and say good-bye before she had to be put out of her misery. That made me really sad.

    What a sweet little face she has.

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  2. This is a bummer Jess. I'm happy you introduced her to us. She will be missed for sure. This picture of Suka is perfect. Hope you're doing well.

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  3. I'm so sorry Jess. You have my condolences. Hopefully Suka is in a happier place.

    Peace and Hugs.

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  4. Pets are such a part of our lives, I'm so sorry for your loss.
    Rest in peace Suka.

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  5. so sorry to hear. I lost a puppy to parvo and i cried and cried and had only had him a couple months.

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  6. I've been in your shoes before and no matter how many times you have to go through it, it's never easy. I have 3 dogs and a cat now and I hate for that day to come. Suka is now in dog heaven where she'll never have to getting hit by that woman again. Take care Suka!

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  7. Ah Jess, I am so sorry.

    Swish and I were just IMming each other and at the EXACT SAME TIME VIA IM we asked each other if we've talked/heard from you. So interesting that you were on both our minds at the very same time.

    Hugs to you and R.I.P to Suka.

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  8. Got your blog off Stefanie's blog roll, (Baby on Bored) and I just wanted to say I'm sorry about Suka. My dog died in 1991 and I was so upset I haven't gotten a dog since. RIP Suka, go find my Kiko and pee on furniture. Kiko will show you how.

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  9. though i've never owned a dog, the death of my fish was devasting enough for me. i'm so sorry for your loss.

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  10. Gentle journey, sweet Suka.

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  11. I was living in Vegas when my mom had to have her dog of fourteen years put to sleep. If I had been able to afford it, I would have taken the next plane back. This is a very difficult thing to go through.

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  12. So sorry Jess. xo

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  13. Oh Jess I am so sorry! She's in doggie heaven now, marking her new territory.

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  14. Jess, I'm so sorry about your doggie dog. I remember that you've written about her before - especially that urination business, which almost made me piddle in my own pants.

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  15. Oh, Jess. I'm so sorry. I still miss the dog we had growing up, and she was put to sleep years ago. I just tell myself that we were lucky to have her enriching our lives in the first place, and that that should more than make up for the sadness of not having her.

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  16. Anonymous11:44 AM

    i'm so sorry to hear this, jess. losing pets (even when it is their time) is just awful.

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  17. I'm so sorry for your loss. :( Glad you got to say goodbye, though, and that you had her for so long.

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  18. I am so very sorry for your loss :(

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  19. Awww - what a sweet, sweet dog. I'm sorry for your loss.

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  20. This just breaks my heart. My thoughts are with you, the family and the yard. All who will miss her in very different ways. She looked like a hell of a dog- very jaunty with her kerchief.

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  21. How come dogs don't get more years on the planet? They're so good, and most of us are so rotten. You have our sympathy. And know that if you don't feel like blogging for two weeks, you're so good I'll check you every day until you do. Be good to yourself.

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  22. :(
    I am so sorry about the loss of your dog.
    We had to put our dog to sleep last year for a debilitating illness. It hurts very badly to lose a "friend"...

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  23. I was feeling so sad and weepy...until that part about your dad piddling in the lawn. Jess, you always crack me up.

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  24. Oh, I'm sorry to hear about your dog!!!

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  25. Oh, Jess....

    I'm sorry. So sorry. I know how you feel. Watching them suffer when they can't tell you they're in pain or express how they feel is the worst. Please know you're in my thoughts.

    HUGS!

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  26. Awww. I'm sorry :(

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  27. I'm so sorry, Jess. It is so hard losing a member of the family. Hope you do find comfort in the fact that you had so many years with her, and she was spared from future pain by your family's selfless act to put her down before she had to suffer. ((hugs))

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  28. I'm so sorry to hear about your dog. We lost ours last summer in the same way (rapidly developing tumors that were almost definitely cancer). Except in our case, we couldn't bring ourselves to make the decision to put her to sleep. But by her last night, it was clear that her time was limited and she was really suffering. We finally decided that if she was still with us in the morning, we'd have to do it. She died that night under her favorite tree in the backyard. I really miss her.

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  29. Oh Jess, I'm just catching up on blogs and I'm so so sorry to hear this. I'm glad it went relatively quickly and that you have 16 awesome years to show for it. RIP, Suka.

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  30. Sorry...from a one dog lover to another:

    …Grieve not,
    nor speak of me with tears,
    but laugh and talk of me
    as if I were beside you…
    I loved you so.
    'twas Heaven here with you.

    Isla Paschal Richardson

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  31. The death of a beloved pet is amazingly painful. Especially one you've had for some time. I'm really sorry for your loss.

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  32. I'm sorry Jess. That's so hard. My best friend just had to put her dog to sleep this morning! From the same thing. It's good you didn't put him through a surgery.

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  33. I'm so partial to Springers- such happy looking dogs. I hope Suka is running all over Doggie Heaven and finding nice stinky things to roll around in.

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  34. Checkin in witcha! Hope you're doing ok.

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  35. Few things are as sad as the death of a beloved dog.

    Also. . .your Dad ought to have that slogan printed on a t-shirt.

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  36. My condolences Jess. Some people say "it's only a pet," but anyone who's ever owned a dog knows they're just as much family as everyone else.

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  37. Well, I'm way late with this, but you have my condolences. Speaking as someone whose animals have always been firm members of the family, I know how hard it can be to lose one. :(

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  38. ... ... i'm choking on a few tears over here, Jess...I'm glad that she had you guys and that you had her too.

    I'm sorry...

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