Huskies and Labs are sight dogs. Their eyes are their strongest sense. All four of our dogs are about 3/4 Husky and a 1/4 Lab, so their eyes are important.
I started noticing a couple of years ago that Blaze's eyes were clouding over. In fear of glaucoma, the vet checked her out and said,"It waslens deterioration. Which is just as it sounds. Old age catching up and the lenses begin to deteriorate. For the most part she can still see and you may notice her struggle more at night."
I wonder if it is hereditary? If so, they probably got it from their mother, Silver, as she also had it. Because I also see slight signs of it in the rest of the dogs. Or is it normal old age?
I don't really notice any difference with Blaze, except when we play "find it." (I throw treats around the yard and they "find it") When I throw the treats, she strains to see them fly and land. Then she looks back at me, wondering if I really did throw them, because she can't see them. There is a look of worry in her face. At this point I throw a couple more closer to her, hoping she will see them, but it is mute. Eventually she tries to find them with her nose. I didn't realize how much she depended on her sight for that game. And if I really think about it, I am sad for her, but honesty that's the only sign I see. Otherwise she my silly, bouncing, mouthy Blaze who can still catch treats in the air, keep the cat in check and catch a chipmunk, like the rest of the gang.
I'm sure there will be more things that show as she continues to age. All I can do is take it in stride, don't dwell on it and give her the best life possible. Really that's all any of us can do for our dogs and enjoy every minute with them.
There are the usual things, like collars, leashes, blankets, bowls, toys and beds that we keep after our furry loved ones pass on. I even have the last medications from both Silver and Brut, stored away for what, I don't know. I'm sure there are many more common things that us pet lovers keep, but what is the strangest? What is that oddball thing that you just can't seem to part with? That one thing that no one would understand except for your pet and you?
Mine is this stack of large yogurt cups.
Hubby, Mark can't understand why I've kept them. Heck, I don't even know if I understand why I can't part with them.
Brut and I used to share a bit of yogurt every day all by ourselves. He was just so adorable with food when we were alone. No other dogs to threaten him and he would be so comical and attentive with me. No fear. He was so beautiful in these moments. He was so bright eyed and bushy tailed, if you will. His true self shining through. Not the leader of the pack dog or the enforcer dog. He was so content and happy to share with me and I with him.
I could get him to do anything for food. Place him in any position. Add props. Anything. But during our yogurt time, he was free to just be himself. Happy and free with a treat. It was kind of magical who this boy was when his guard was down.
He would eat from a spoon and he was good at it. His eyes were soft and intent while his fur stood on end in excitement. He had a smile on his face that shined with serenity.
This is the first time I really explored why I've kept these yogurt cups and now it makes sense to me.
It was my quality time with the REAL Brut.
The boy I will always remember.
How I wish I had a picture of his face of happiness.
At least now I have the memory the go with the cups.
So how about you? What the strangest thing you ever kept from a loss pet?
It all started at dusk when Zappa, Fiona and I went outside to enjoy the warm morning air. It was 71°F. A record for this time of the year. We sat drinking in the gentle warmth anticipating the sunrise.
We do not have a horizon, we live the forest with trees everywhere, but just above the tree tops it is possible to get a peek of both the sun rising and setting. A glimmer, if you will, and as I was about to find out that is all you need.
Zappa was laying about in the middle of the yard, directly in front of me, facing east. While Fiona was at my feet in her personally dug hole, probably still half asleep. It was early for all of us being that we are night dogs and people. It made watching this sunrise even more special.
Lost in my thoughts, I suddenly noticed a pinkish hue glowing against the shed. For a second I thought, " I never noticed the shed that color before..." Then my eyes immediately went to the sky as my consciousness caught up to what my eyes were seeing.
It quickly built up from a pinkish-orange into a rich magenta and then quickly faded in a matter of minutes. But in those few minutes, the whole yard was washed in pink. It was absolutely beautiful. And Zappa, Zappa's face just glowed in color as he watched the incredible light crescendo and descend.
I can't remember the last time I have felt so awed by a sunrise. It was like touching the hand of God.
And Zappa, he could make a believer out of you, bathing in the cascading light that was connecting him to the Big Dog in the sky.
It was a simple easy-going day yesterday at the 24 Paws of Love. The dogs and I were recovering from a long day the day before
and we just hung out all day together. Back and forth, from one pack to the other. Making the most of this day and being together.
Chance gave a long solo howl which eventually prompted Fiona "across the door" to join in. I couldn't believe how long the song lasted. It was beautiful. It made me wonder what he was singing about and why. Was there a purpose to his song or did it just want to express himself at that moment?
We ended our sweet little reclusive time by playing the "Find It" game. I throw treats around the yard and they "find it." Just before going out to play, all the dogs joined in as the Howling Choir, as always it was awesome! Zappa does more barking that howling and his voice has become raspy, reminding me of the many years we have spent together. I love the memories we are making together as the dogs age gracefully. These are the times I won't have on my memory card, but will be able to recall in a heartbeat with the help of this blog.
That's why I write, because some day all of this will be a memory in my heart. It's the simple things that make my dogs the light of my life.