Tuesday, June 12, 2012

From a Low Angle

(Princess Fur, four months old)

I'm doing the usual things one does when faced with Very Bad News.

Mainly, I phoned my mother - ironically, on the same day she brought home her new 10-week-old schnauzer puppy. She cried and I felt sad again. I told a few friends who know Princess Fur well. I've sought advice from other, dog-owning friends, who urged me not to panic.

But I'm facing Princess Fur's possible expiration date with open eyes. My mother pointed something out that I had completely lost sight of: This fall, Fur will be 10 years old. Miniature Schnauzers can live up to 16 years, but that's exceptional.

In my family, our schnauzers have lived 9, 10.5 and 13 years respectively. My mother's dog was in perfect physical health but was suffering from 'doggie dementia' when they finally let her go.

I've stopped looking at this news as a curse and started to regard it as a gift. I'm mean, at least I've been given a 'heads up'. Besides, it's the beginning of the summer, a great season to have a dog, to be a dog.

I've decided that regardless of what happens, I'm going to do everything in my power to make this Princess Fur's Most Awesome Summer Ever.

We're going to do all of her favourite things. I'm making a list:

1) Long walks: Fur can't cover long distances anymore, but she can easily spend a half-hour covering very little ground, but sniffing absolutely *everything*. We'll do that. Me with my iPod and Fur with her nose. We'll take our time. I'll let her lead the way. I won't hurry her.

2) The Big Park: She loves it but we don't often go in the summer because it's a long ride on public transit, which is expensive when I don't have a monthly pass in the summer months. We're going to go anyway. Once a week.

3) Play: She still loves to play. Right now, she's not so keen because she has a sore tooth, but as soon as that's sorted I'm going to make time for a daily play date with my dog. Just me, Princess Fur and her posse of stuffed toys.

4) Bananas: They're soft, they're sweet and she loves them. Every week, I'll buy a few extra so she can have banana slices at regular intervals during the day.

5) Cuddles: Whenever I'm on the bed or the window seat, reading and writing (and I do a lot of both) I'm bringing her up with me.

6) The balcony: She loves it out there. I'm determined to find a doggie lounger for her to use. I used to have an old papasan chair for her, but it fell apart. I'll investigate some alternatives.

And there are other things. I'd love to buy her a new cushion for her basket. Maybe treat her to some yummy soft canned food a few times a week. I'm trying to get back in touch with the owner of one of Fur's best friends from puppyhood - maybe we can have a little reunion and the two old-lady-dogs can hobble along together on a long sniffy walk.

We're seizing the day.

(This post is part of the June photo project)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Alyson O'Holic said...

I can definitely empathize(http://www.alysonoholic.com/wilson-and-bread/) and while I do not envy your position, I love that you've made such a grand plan to make every remaining moment special for both of you. That ability to mentally prepare yourself and make it a beautiful opportunity seems to be the silver lining.

Loo said...

Canned 'green' tripe. Smells beyond awful so it's definitely best enjoyed out on that balcony, but man does Tai adore that stuff. Very good for them too. I get it at the pet store, it's from New Zealand and is either lamb or beef. Tai gets the lamb. If PF likes smelly wet food, this might be a good one to give her. I can't speak to the rest without crying but you know I know. xoxoxox

Lauren H. said...

Awww Princess Fur has an awesome summer ahead of her. Just savor every day...

My daughter received a stuffed toy kitty the other day (to add to the millions) and when she asked what to name it, I said immediately, "Princess Fur".

I wish you both well -- and many warm, sunny days in these coming months.

Kaivalya said...

@Alyson: Thanks - funny how it helps to know that others have gone through this and come out the other side.

@Loo: Something tells me that I'm going to dislike tripe as much as she'll love - but I'll look around for some!

@Lauren: Thanks so much for sharing the cute V-spot story and the kind words. Hope you're continuing to enjoy sunny days and fun times with your daughter :-)