It was a year ago that Apple guy and I had to put Spike down. I still miss him immensely and not a day goes by that I don’t think of him in some way. To this day, there is a hole in my life where he used to be. No matter how much I love little Cooper, I still miss Spike. Here is just a quick shot of the hundreds I have of him. He was only in my life for just under 2 years but he brought me so much joy. I still remember the first day I met him. . .
Due to timing and cost, Spike arrived in SF before Apple guy. We had decided it best to ship him cross country instead of by air to avoid not only the extra cost but also the potential health risks. As soon as the guy opened the back of the trailer and pulled his cage out, he bounded right toward me as if he knew me. He ran up to me and promptly rolled over and presented his belly to be rubbed. I of course complied and knew I’d have no reservations about him coming to live with me. I took his blankie1 and collar and introduced him to his new home. After lots of affection and attention later, he investigated his surroundings for a bit and then decided it was nap time. This new place was his home for the rest of his life.
As time passed, he became such a huge influence in my life and brought me happiness I’d never experienced with an animal before. I never once regretted his presence or the attention he needed even after Apple guy and I split up. His death was a great loss and is still very painful for me. Having raised him from a pup, I’m sure Apple guy’s sense of loss is that much greater.
Much like Cooper, Spike was a rescue. Apple guy rescued him when he was not much younger than Cooper and gave him a life of joy and happiness. Coming to live in SF seemed to agree with Spike and he quickly settled into a life of leisure. lol He was vibrant and mobile up until the very end. His last sight in this world was of us and I can’t think of a better way to go. He was loved and he knew it.
Spike, where ever you are, you are missed and most definitely not forgotten. You brought light and joy to my life and I will always be thankful for that.
I miss you Spikey.
Spike had his own blanket that he loved and it came with him to ease the tension [↩]
It’s nights like tonight I really miss my Spike. Its warm, the moon is full and it would have been a perfect night to go for a nice walk. I don’t think I ever realized what a wonderful and much needed companion he was. He couldn’t go far but he could go and was always happy to do it.
After a long day like today (and yesterday) he was always a welcome soul when I got home. He didn’t care how my day went, he was just happy to see me. Often times I’d come home and see him waddling around excited and begging for attention, a treat, or to go out and I would forget the troubles of my day.
Shane and I have discussed the idea of getting a new dog down the road but I’m still not on board with it. I don’t want another dog, I want Spike. I know I can’t have him because he is gone now but even almost 2 months later I find moments where I tear up thinking of him. I’m still not ready to contemplate getting another animal.
We’ve discussed the idea of getting a Frenchie (French Bulldog) because they’re a bit smaller and it would be more ideal for the apt. I realize its a better idea than another English Bullie but I’m still not sure. I didn’t mind taking care of him or cleaning up his messes from time to time. And while the apt was a tad small for Spike, he never really minded. He got plenty of walks and outings to ever feel cramped or cooped up.
I know I’m not betraying his memory by getting another dog but I do feel that way. Spike was unique and original and I couldn’t think of “replacing” him. While I am a little more open to the idea of another animal, I’m still not ready.
If you’ve been following me on twitter or Facebook, you know Spike hasn’t been doing so well the last few days. He woke up the other morning and his hip was really bothering him. Poor thing, while he was trying to pee (lift his leg) he lost his balance and fell down. It would have been comical had I not been so sad. He turned and looked at me like I’d done something to him. It took him a few minutes to realize he was having issues. I promptly freaked out, got really upset, and almost started crying.1 He got thru it and I actually carried him upstairs. Not because he couldn’t make it on his own, I was afraid he might irritate his already unsteady hip.
Hip dysplasia is a very common ailment for English bulldogs and Spike being almost 9 (in just 2 short months) I guess its good that its taken this long to manifest. All of Spike’s siblings have passed away already according to Apple guy. I guess it was only a matter of time before Spikey succumbed to something. Luckily, he seems to be on the mend. He is limping a lot less and we are massaging and stretching his leg daily. At this point, we’re only trying non-invasive treatments. I’ve put him on a glucosamine regimen that he will remain on permanently, either thru his food or treats. I’m hoping rest and supplements are enough right now as I don’t have a lot of extra cash at the moment. If this doesn’t work, I’ll look at steroidal/arthritis supplements as well. It seems in Bullies dysplasia and arthritis go hand in hand. Often the dysplasia increases the arthritis symptoms.
As I mentioned, he is doing better. I’ve been keeping his outside walks very short and he seems to be responding. He’s been putting more weight on it and walking around more and more like normal every day. We broke out his heating pad again2 to help keep his him warm at night and during his many naps. Keep your fingers crossed by the end of this week he’ll be almost back to normal. Sadly, this means he won’t get to go on as many walks. He loves to go out and I’ll have to come up with ways to get him out w/o overworking his hip. I have no problem getting him a red Flyer wagon and dragging him around in it. lol He would totally love it too. The problem would be keeping him in it. His eagerness and excitement is unabated and he loves attention.
I’m not prepared to think worst case scenario right now. I’m still shocked at how attached I’ve become. I grew up on a farm. I raised livestock and pets and never felt this much angst. The very thought of losing him drives me to tears. I love that damn dog and my life just won’t be the same without him. And no, I have no desire to replace him now or later. If and when he does get to that point there will be absolutely no discussion of replacing him.
Yes, I cry. I’m a typical Aquarian in that I’m very emotional [↩]
I’m pulling a ‘palin’ and making up words again. lol Anyhoo, I survived the 40th birthday. Actually, it was very low key and relaxed. Apple guy and I spent a day at Golden Gate park and a nice simple dinner. I’m not big on celebrating my birthday but it was very enjoyable. Yes, I did the obligatory going out to drink with friends. That said, I enjoyed the day at the park more.1
In other news, I’ve been getting a lot of meme requests lately. Sorry to disappoint but I hate those things and rarely do them. Every now and then I find one that strikes my fancy but it is rare. I appreciate the offer but don’t be upset if I don’t.
Apple guy and I spent this weekend finishing some projects around the apt. We also spent time on repeated trips to Target and Home Depot. He is very handy and always reminds me how easy some tasks can be when one applies oneself. I’d rather just pay someone else to do it. lol Ok, that’s only half true. Work takes a lot out of me and I’ll admit I rarely feel up to doing stuff that I consider to be “chores” around the house. I always help (as if I had a choice) when he does but he obviously enjoys it. I wish I got as much excitement out of it as he does. I’m just happy he’s happy and whatever makes him happy, I’m all about. *g* He also gets huge props for turning my bachelor bad into a very comfy home for us both. I don’t even recognize the apt from then and now.
One of Apple guy’s friends had a sick doggy last week. The doggy is up there in years. This made me think of Spike and I honestly don’t know what I’m gonna do when he starts declining. He is doing remarkably well for his 8 years but we’ve noticed little signs lately that his age is catching up with him. I’ll be honest, I am gonna freak out if/when he does gets sick. I have never in my life been so attached to an animal. I honestly don’t understand it either. lol Growing up on a farm the way I did, we were always taught that animals come and go and not to invest too much energy in something that would end up being food later. Not that we’d eat dogs but the mentality carried over from our livestock to pets. I lost several pets as a kid and I can’t ever remembering being teary-eyed. I would be sad for sure just not all blubbery. Hell, just the idea of Spike not being around makes me tear up. Seriously, I’m warning you now. I expect cards, gifts, and visits from all of you if/when Spike reaches his golden moment.
Of course, I haven’t been huge on bars for years. [↩]