This is going to be a short one. I am typing with one hand in the most awkward position imaginable.
I have a dog head in my lap. There is a gentle snore happening which is the sweetest sound I have ever heard. His head will fall if I move my other hand. This is what’s important to me in this moment.
The truth is, he isn’t feeling well. He has been a little “off” for a couple weeks, nothing that I can really pin my finger on, so we are going in on Monday for a whole gamet of tests. This dog HATES vets. Well, no, not the vet really but anything to do with restraint or sitting still. He lets me do most of his work, but being an equine vet there is a lot I don’t know so he will be sedated and poked and prodded for a bit.
My last dog was my heart dog. She was this amazing creature. She got me through so much shit in my life. I loved the hell out of her. She was a really beautiful dog. She died the day before I was supposed to move cross country for my job. It was the most devastation I have ever felt. I don’t really connect with many people. It’s weird. I will open my heart as much as they do and it turns out, with many people, that isn’t very much. Or maybe my heart is just really big so it feels like a small opening. My dogs though, they get it all. When she died… I was not sure I wanted to move on. It was BAD. Then I got my current boy. It took us a long time to bond but now that we have we are pretty inseparable. I didn’t think another dog would ever fill my heart, but he does. He has a lot of anxiety and so do I and quite frankly we calm each other. There are not a lot of people who would take on a dog like him, he’s a bit of a nut, but, as with any dog, his heart is pure and his love knows no end.
He has helped me through so much and is the warm comfort of safety that allows me to sleep at night.
With my last dog I knew something was a little off for a few months and I kept taking her in and saying I couldn’t put my finger on it, but something was wrong. We could never find anything. Until one day she woke up bleeding into her abdomen from a tumor on her spleen. In a way I am happy I didn’t know sooner. She was great up until her last day, and there was nothing but happiness and love in her last moments. My regret is that I didn’t do more with her, see more of the world. Realistically, she was probably happy just to be with me, no matter where we were.
This situation feels a little similar. I am trying not to panic. He is young, 5 years old. I envisioned years and years with him and many more adventures. Hopefully, this will be nothing and he will come through with a clean bill of health. But this situation has weighed on me and made me really step back and look at what is important in my life. It makes me consider why I do what I do as a vet. Most importantly it has reminded me that life is short and we never know what’s around the bend, so it serves us best to be present with the moments we are given, try not to live in the past or future, show appreciation and love to those important in your life, and love like a dog…. with a fully open heart and a lot of tail wagging. ❤ ❤