Thursday, September 17, 2009

When I called to check on Callie today, the vet told me her progress was not encouraging. Her lab values were only a little better after 2 days of diuresis and iv fluids, she'd stopped eating completely, and was obviously in pain. We made the difficult decision to end her suffering today. I went to the office to visit with her, and I stayed with her until she was gone. I am very grateful to Suzie for taking care of Savy and Scarlett so I could be with Callie in her last moments.

We adopted Callie from the West Memphis Animal Shelter about 2 1/2 years ago. We are sad she's gone, but happy that we were able to provide a loving home and family. She was a great watch dog and always kept a close eye on our home. We laid her to rest in the back yard where she can continue to watch over us. She will be missed terribly.

First night at home.

Friends from the beginning.

I want to include Jon's Facebook post on the matter.

We lost Callie today. She was a great dog. She was so loving and patient. Maybe it was a breed trait, but she would always sit on our feet, and watch around us, as if protecting us. She went into renal failure a few days ago. The vet said she had a chance because she was still producing some urine, but today, she was going downhill. She had totally stopped eating and was snapping at the vet staff due to the pain in her abdomen. Christy was with her at the end, when the vet put her to sleep. Unfortunatly I was at work and couldn't get back in time. Thanks to Suzie for keeping the girls so that Christy could be with her.

Callie was Savy's first and oldest best friend. We got Callie when Savy was about 14 months old and Callie was a little over a year. As far as Savy was concerned Callie has always been here. When Savy was a toddler, she would, as kids do, pull, tug, and swat Callie, but she never reacted.

We got Callie at the West Memphis, AR Animal Shelter. She had been at the shelter for almost a year. When they found her, she had a large wound down her back and across the top of her hips. She healed, but it left an inch wide scar in the same area where no hair grew. Because of the scar, the hair going down her back would stand up, like she was angry. But, also because of the damage, she would get arthritis in her hips and hurt pretty badly. She would limp across the yard, but was still very happy to see us when we got home and would come running as fast as her limp would let her.

She was a great watchdog. She had three posts where she would stand guard. The first was at the front door, in the cool shady entry area. The second was between the bushes in front of the window of the study. The third, and probably her favorite this past year, was on the back porch, sitting on a soft chair. She was sitting on that chair, keeping watch when we took her to the vet. She couldn't even stand up, but was still watching.

We buried her in the backyard, in a shady spot under a large tree where she liked to rest in the summer. I had wrapped her in one of the thick pet throws that we used as her bed at night, including her two favorite toys. Savy never saw Callie, but I told her Callie was inside the throw. I started digging the grave and Savy ran and grabbed her pink shovel and started helping. I tried to explain to Savy what we were doing, but she summed it up as only a little kid could. After I made my feeble explanation, Savy asked "is this Callie's bed?", referring to the grave. All I could say was yes, she will sleep here forever.

Whe had kind of a mini ceremony and Suzie came over. Christy had helped Savy pick some flowers, and Savy threw them all over the throw blanket. It's not every day you have to dig a grave for your family pet. I was doing ok until I started to fill the grave and the dirt started falling on the throw. Savy started yelling over and over "Don't do that to her Daddy!" and then it got tough.

Suzie had a good idea. We are going to try to get a custom stepping stone made to mark her grave. Christy is going to plant some crocus bulbs that sprout and bloom in Winter (February). That way the grass will still be dormant and the flowers will stand out from the rest of the yard and not be mowerman bait.


Ann said...

So sorry to hear you had to put Callie down. My thoughts are with you.

Nanny said...

I was so anxious to hear about Callie, but I thought she would probably get better. I cried like a baby when I read your post. She was so gentle with little Savy. She was a good little dog. The pictures of her and Savy are precious. At least you still have sweet Vita. I am so glad you got her back. We loved Callie too!! We'll miss her when we come up.

Brandi said...

I am sorry to hear about your loss. That is so painful to hear. I cannot imagine your pain. I'm close by if you need anything. just call.

Mimi said...

I will miss Callie too. The post you made and Jon's were both very beautiful. I feel truly blessed that you, Savy and Scarlett have such a caring and warm hearted husband and father in Jon.

Adam Holly Grace said...

That is SOOO sad! I am sorry to hear about Callie. I am crying right now! I can't imagine how hard that would be...