Friday, January 2, 2009

Heaven has a new gentleman dog

It's taken me a few days to be able to post this. Most of you who keep up with my blog already got my letter. If you look to the left of this post, you will see a picture of Pharaoh, our 14 year old Ig, the first one we ever had. On December 31, we had to put him to sleep. He had been carrying around cancer, hemangiosarcoma for about two years. This is cancer that originates usually in the spleen or liver and then spreads slowly. It is most often first noticed as lesions on the skin that look like blood blisters- you have them removed surgically as long as you can, and when they become too large and too many, you make the gut wrenching decision to put the dog to sleep. On December 31, Pharaoh has been lying on an old comforter on the couch and got up to go outside, and when I came back in, I saw a large puddle of blood- the size of a bread plate. Jon immediately realized where the blood came from and we went and found him- he was sleeping peacefully under the oak tree and the bleeding had stopped. (He was lying on the side where the bleeding was, which is why we didn't notice it.) We all looked at each other and Julesy said, "Today is the day, isn't it Mama?" "Yes, baby it is." Dogs can bleed out and die from these and we always said we couldn't bear that possibility. So we called our dear vet, Dr. Rockefeller and got showered and dressed. All the way, we told him what he had to look forward to- being the fastest again (he had lost that honor a while back to Houston), being able to eat all he wanted, being thin again, being able to see and hear again. I told him that the feast at God's table was amazing and that I wanted him to tell Spaz and Izzy and Bianca and Pancho and Panchita hello and to tell them we loved them so much. I will have to copy and paste what I said about him because I'll never be able to say it that well again. I came into the living room today and saw him and started to go over and pet him and say, " Hey old man, I love you.", but it was a beige comforter- and I cried again.

As most of you know, Pharaoh was our first IG. He was 14 years old and the "once in a lifetime" dog everyone dreams of having. He was a gentleman and the first dog we introduced every new pet to when they came here- hamsters, cats, other dogs- whatever- he would lick them and love them and then they knew they were in a good place- we used to call him our ambassador to all living things. He was in no pain at all (these things don't hurt- they just look ghastly) and he left the world in the hands of our dear Dr. Rockefeller who has been our vet friend to ease our darling dogs all to heaven and we so dearly love her for being that angel. It was not a hysterical scene for any of us- just a sad thing that we all knew was coming. He was the reason for our loving this breed. We want to thank Carol Harris for such a fine and noble dog. We often said that if ever we wanted to clone an animal, he was the one. I have owned many many dogs and many have come through my doors as rescues, but NEVER will another dog have 1/2 the dignity, kindness, and character of this dear old man. I am on my new laptop, so I don't have a recent picture, but he is on my blog, first page. :) I love you, old man. You are no longer deaf or blind and you are the fastest runner again, buddy. Tell our other babies we love them and enjoy the buffet at God's table. Love, Mommy

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