[Note to readers: I got very, very behind on updating this blog. I missed some very important events that I am going back and documenting now — and setting the dates back as well. I’m actually writing this post at the end of March, 2017. ]
Today was “the day” for my beloved Pax.
He has long been plagued by arthritis in his back and hips that we’ve managed with drugs. Still, as he aged, he lost more and more function in his hips. Now we’ve reached an impasse: if we give him enough medication to mute the pain, his hips are too wobbly to walk unaided. If we don’t, he can walk, but he’s in constant pain.
And, so, today we say goodbye to our dear boy. My heart is utterly broken, even though I’ve been anticipating this for some time.
Pax was my first curly — the first I ever saw, much less owned. He was everything I wanted in a dog — biddable (but still opinionated), brave, kind, brilliant, goofy, solid as a rock. We got him from Cathy Lewandowski in upstate New York. Her SoftMaple dogs are simply lovely, and I couldn’t have asked for better.
Pax was my dog, my heart dog. I was his mom, and no one else would do. One time soon after we got him a friend came over to “babysit,” so I could get some much needed sleep. Pax wouldn’t stand for that. He climbed the gate and sought me out and made himself a nuisance until Jay finally had to bring him in to me. I lifted the blanket, and Pax snuggled in next to me and fell asleep.
Together, everything was better.
He was young for a very long time. Even at 8, people mistook him for a teenager. But eventually age catches up. The harness in the picture above was an absolute life saver. It’s called the Help ‘Em Up harness, and it gave us at least two additional years with him. Even at the end, it was his body, not his mind or his heart, that gave out.
It’s very quiet here without my curly boys. Miss Pflouff, our Newf, is alone for the first time in her life. Jay and I are able to go out without hiring a babysitter. I won’t have to wake up every hour or two to help Pax shift positions, or to help him outside.
Sometimes taking care of Pax was hard, but I wouldn’t have traded it. Not one second of it. I love you, Paxil. I will always love you. See you at the Bridge.