Tuesday, January 19, 2010

What do you say? (9:04PM)

Bundy is dying. Slowly, he's falling apart. Every day there's a change, he's slower. I doubt he'll make it to 16 years old, on about April 11 this year.

Sunday was very hot and humid (about 36C), and didn't cool down very much over night. He didn't eat Sunday night, he seemed to be concentrating on breathing, I fed him on Monday morning as it was cooler and he ate with a little effort.

He seemed to have perked up on Monday, it wasn't such a struggle for him. Monday was a stinker, 38C. When it cooled down just before the usual time I feed them and he seemed okay, it was just the heat knocking him around. He ate his dinner. There was the usual water gone from the water buckets.

Today, Tuesday, I had checked their water before I left home, I would only be gone for a few hours at work (more catching up), and so I thought the water would be fine. It was okay. When I went down to feed them at about 6pm the water wasn't as low as it should be on quite a warm day (it was only about 34C today). Bundy was standing panting, his nose was dry and it looked like he was dehydrated. I put his food down for him, he left it for a while. Quite a while. Then he munched a dog biscuit, and ate a little of it. I brought a bucket of water over for him to have a drink. He drank what seemed like a lot. Then he started 'herc-ing', he wobbled down the yard and I thought he was going to do a 'job', but he tossed the water.

The girl who clips him for me phoned today and left a message. When I hear from her I'll see if she can help me get him to the local vet tomorrow.

*** My friend, the lass who clips the dogs for me and has clipped them for years, was just on the phone. I've arranged for her to come over and we'll see if we can dig a grave for Bundy. Both of us are unfit and have problems with our backs/shoulders so it should be interesting. If we're successful and can make it deep enough we'll bring him home from the vet. She's going to help me take him to the vet, too.

I was thinking about this in the shower. I've been crying a bit tonight.

When I first moved here I got a job at the university, it was local. There was a lecturer there, a vet, very well respected and loved by all his students. I heard that he looked after pets for uni people. He looked after my dogs for many years - not that they needed much, just the initial desexing and then their annual shots, which he'd come to my home to administer and when 48 and then Katie needed to be euthenased he came to my home and took care of that, helping me to bury both the furry kids after they'd been seen to. (The graves had been dug, he helped carry them there and helped bury them.)

He was at the uni for many years. He was a respected member of staff and a leading light in the campus community. He was a warden in the Halls of Residence for years, too. A few years ago he retired (well, maybe about five years ago), and moved to Toowoomba. He would still take some classes each semester, specialising in animal parasites. In the last two years he and his wife retired to Bribie Island. Gone, but not forgotten. A kind and helpful man.

Late last year we heard terrible news of this Vet. He had been diagnosed with an inoperable, aggressive brain cancer. He had not taken it very well and was raging. Understandable.

I dearly want to write to him. To tell him how much he's helped me in looking after my pets. How much I appreciate all that he has done for me. The kind words, the help to bury my pets. To thank him.

But what do you say?


Anonymous said...

Gday Kae,
I do not know you but I am sending you all my love.
This post resonates with me.
You are such a good soul.
Best wishes
Dave the lefty (of Footscray)

kae said...

Thank you, Dave. That's so kind of you to say.

I'm just digging around photobucket looking for some pictures of my furry kids...

You've made my eyes leak again!

Mr. Bingley said...

Aw, Kae, they're such beloved schweeties.

They give so much love and joy to our lives.

I'm sorry.

kae said...

A child may break your heart many times.

Your pet will only break your heart once.

kc said...

Kae, My Chief has been reading your blog. He mentioned your post, asking if I'd read it yet. No, I hadn't but I have now, and would help if I could. After leaving the house & starting his truck, he came in, took a book down from his shelf, and asked me to send you this passage, which has given him comfort at the loss of those he loves:

Death is nothing at all -- I have only slipped away into the next room. I am I, and you are you. Whatever we were to each other, that we still are. Call me by my old familiar name, speak to me in the easy way you always used. Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together. Play, smile, think of me, pray for me. Let my name be ever the household word that it always was. Life means all that it ever meant. There is absolutely unbroken continuity... Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am waiting for you--for an interval--somewhere near, just around the corner. All is well.

--Henry Scott Holland
(from the book "Forever Remembered")

My heart hurts with you, m'Friend.

kc said...

One other quick item, Kae - write the letter.

1735099 said...

Write to him....and soon. You will regret it if you don't. What you write is not as important as the act of compassion involved in the writing, although with your gift with words - it will be fine.
Just remind him of past kindnesses. After he is gone, the letter will also comfort his family.

Egg said...

Ditto re writing the guy as it'll likely help both of you and hopefully Bundy has a sweet ride.

kae said...

I have to track down an address for him, which is not as easy as you may think.

Kev said...

Chin up girl. I lost my old Retriever December just gone and had to console myself with the fact that she had lived a long life, had helped me bring up the kids and is no longer in pain.
Do write the letter and if you later go to the funeral listen for the sound of a baby crying...it's the cycle of life. It bights now and then but comes back round.

Pedro the Ignorant said...

So sorry to hear about your Bundy, Kae.

It is part of life's sadness that our four legged friends have such a short time with us.