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Our hearts are broken.
Henri the old Pup gave us a mighty scare last Spring right after we moved to our new forever home. We were blessed to spend time with him for several more months watching him frolic around the yard, along the country roads, in the woods, by the pond, garden, three feet snowdrifts; lounge by the pool, porch, fireplace, bedroom …in front of Ron Hawkins and spend quality “I could care less about you” time with his five feline siblings and lots and lots of friends who came to visit the new house.
Henri was the kindest soul and lived a good life. But he was getting old. And tired. And mostly slept, getting up every hour or so to spin around to plop back down or to follow mama or papa into the next room to be by us at all times. Slower to get up, harder to jump into the car for rides or on the bed at night. A little hard of hearing, a little more senile at times. And for a while there we were even making sure he had a doggie diaper on at night. Yet, the old doggie still managed to get cat food at all costs though, funny how that works, right?
A few weeks ago Henri seemed out of it, no fever like last time but labored breathing and hiding from us, tail between his legs …we took him to the vet where we learned he once again had a serious lung infection. He stayed overnight two nights, stabilized, got better and came home with two antibiotics and a steroid. About 8 days later, Henri waltzed into his checkup with that long waggedy tail and seemed to be fine. Another miracle recovery?!
And two days later, Henri got sick again. But different sick. Throwing up all over the place for hours and hours sick. Trembling and panting sick. The old pup followed me into the bathroom, which in itself wasn’t unusual…but this time fell at my feet and just looked up at me with sad eyes. We took him back to the ER vet immediately. X-rays and blood tests were inconclusive, he had high levels of liver enzymes but this could be due to the meds. So he stayed overnight, the vet rehydrated him and 24 hours later we brought him home with nausea meds. Except we knew something was still wrong.
Henri’s first night home was not good. I stayed up most of the night trying to calm him down between panting and shaking and sleeping. The vet really wanted us to keep an eye on him and thought it could be a reaction to the meds. The next day Henri got up (slowly) and went outside to go potty a few times, had tiny bit of chicken and drank water here and there throughout the day. But he spent the entire day/night in the same spot cozy in front of the fire with both Mama and Papa near his side all day. Calm, but definitely sick. That night we picked him up and he slept on the bed with us as usual…
Yesterday morning, he got off the bed and went over to the door to go outside, but then just stood there, turned around and plopped on the living room floor where he slept most of the day. No eating, no drinking, no potty. Not even a stinky butt boy fart. Around 6pm he managed to get up and wander into the foyer (which was away from mama in the living room and away from papa in the basement.) I gave him lots of love, held back tears, told him it was ok to go to sleep and we loved him. After that I walked away and went to bed bawling my eyes out. We called the vet and they said as long as he is still resting, wait until the morning when our regular vet would be in for an appointment. I cried myself to an early sleep.
In the meantime, Henri decided to muster up the energy and go downstairs to the basement where papa was watching a movie. Papa picked him up and put him on the couch and they stayed that way until he noticed Henri’s breathing was getting shallow again. Papa carried Henri back upstairs and put him on the big round chair and woke me up, crying…saying we needed to take him in ASAP. Dani Cat (Mama Weber’s little Mew Mew) jumped on the chair to next to Henri to keep him company while we got ready to leave, not a sweeter sight in the world.
Since our car is at the end of the driveway (cause we can’t get it up in the snow) we decided to take the two seater truck…with Henri the Old Pup wrapped in a blankie on the front seat and mama squeezed in the back of the cab. Henri couldn’t walk into the vet, he had to be carried. The vet techs took him in the back and put him on oxygen an IV, catheter and gave him a steroid injection. He would rest and we would talk to our vet in the morning.
The call from the ER vet came a little after 1am telling us Henri’s heart stopped. They wanted to know how far we wanted to do life saving measures…it happened very quickly, and there was no sign of distress before it happened.
And that was that. Henri knew we loved him so, so much…and he decided where/when the best time to go be with his sister Sophie.
Thanks for the amazing memories Henri…mama and papa love you so, so much. Rest well old pup. And if you get a chance, give Simba Cat a good barking at just for old times sake.
Henri, like his papa, is a crazy creature of habit. We tried to move the out of place green chair that has been sitting in corner of the foyer into the other room and into the *future* nursery. Of course this was the chair Henri would sit on when mama was in the dining room at the table on the computer.
Well, today we decided to move my computer desk into the dining room with a view out the window of the front porch instead of the upstairs *office* area that we’ve not remotely done anything with. In about 10 years that large office area will make a fantastic upstairs living space/playroom but for now it’s just completely unused. It was going to be our office but with HWMMS spending ALL of his time on the ground floor in the basement in his workshop with his computer and me sitting at the dining room table or sucked into the couch when I’m on the computer, it just made no sense. Now I’m trying to figure out where to place all the bookshelves. (In 10 years when that upstairs room is the playroom…the extra bedroom “nursery” downstairs will become the library/office. Long term plans are good but we live in the present right?)
So here I am typing away at the computer and Henri is pacing back and forth back and forth circle and scratching on the door and looking at me and looking at the empty corner where the chair once sat…about 10 minutes of this and I gave in.
Green out of place chair is back in the foyer. Henri is happy.
Last night I made 3 goals for today. Oh wait, 4 but one I can’t tell you about. ;)
- 1. Take Henri for a walk
- 2. Spend time at Barnes & Noble
- 3. Write out dinner menu for next two weeks
Guess how many of these goals I’ve accomplished?
Instead I’m shooting for 7.000 posts on WordPress (with this post I’m at 6,998.)
I blame the amazingly warm enveloping hug of the woodstove.
87°! Does this look like a dog that wants to go outside in the cold, windy, wet and RAINY weather when our house is sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo warm and cozy? (Now if it was snowing, total different story! But alas…)
Aside: I CANNOT BELIEVE MY 12 DAYS OF VACATION ARE OVER ALREADY! Boo.