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Showing posts from February, 2009

Gracie Shaw, 5/21/94 - 2/25/09

It was time. She knew so, the vet said so, I thought so. I drew Reiki symbols over her head, stroked her side as the valium lured her out of anxious pacing into peaceful slumber, willing and needing to depart (it was time, it was), and now I celebrate the life of this once feisty little Schnauzer who came to me like an angel 15 years ago and led me through crisis into clarity with her zest, her verve, her love. Ciao, Grazia. You were aptly named.

When?

When?
I'm living with two ailing senior dogs for whom special care is routine. I cook bland, grain-free poultry dishes for Frenchie, whose deteriorating spinal malformation required serious weight loss -- under his vet's orders, I had to take him from 23 pounds to 19 (at last weigh in he was under that). His disorder has caused paresis, rendering him unable to walk without his rear legs sliding out from under him. The slightest stress causes frequent urinary and occasional fecal incontinence. He has always been my little sidekick, following me from room to room, and now I sometimes forget that he can't, so when I leave the room for more than a minute, he breaks into wild howls and yodels, what Frenchie people know as "the French bulldog scream." He has slept next to me for the ten years I have lived with him. Once a week or so I am awakened by a mess in the bed....a very unsavory mess with omission-worthy details. From the waist up he's joyful, hungry, alert, …