One Sunday morning twelve years (and a month or so) ago I found myself standing in a PetsMart staring at the cutest little mangy mutt I’d ever seen. Tiny little body that someone had stuck a huge head and big feet on. I had to have him.
I was there because I had somewhat inherited my mom’s dog when she became a flight attendant and my (then) significant other decided we needed another. First, so we would each have our own pal to raise and love on. Second, so they could keep each other company while we were gone all day at work. I agreed to ride along on the search. Do I really need to say that I ended up taking the little guy with the big head home? We called him Max, after seeing an Office Max at an intersection. (Hey, whatever works)
When we first got him, he was full of worms, mites, & fleas, and the little guy could clear a room when he farted. (Nothing a little medication and a change in dog food couldn’t clear up.) Ah, Good times… LOL! He was a smart pup, though, so it took no time at all to train him. I always talked to him as if he were a person so he understood just about anything you said to him. Like me, he was a bit neurotic, chewed his finger (uh, paw) nails, and had a bad back but he was lovable, easy going, and… well, just the best dog you could ask for.
All three of my dogs have passed their life expectancy but even the vet was surprised at how peppy they still were on our last visit. I had hoped that before I went on the road I would be there when they died but duty called and I had to leave, so all four of my 4-legged, hairy little children were relocated to my mom’s house in South Florida.
Last Friday (the day after Christmas) mom came to visit and, on Saturday, she broke the news that Max died. Of the three, he was the last one I expected to go first. He was also the only one not on medication for an illness. Apparently, one day he was acting as though he didn’t feel well and had a hard time breathing, then wouldn’t eat. Mom took him to the vet and after running several tests (bloodwork, xrays, etc.) on him, he died before they got out of the office. They still don’t know why.
I’m sorry mom had to deal with that and I know it was hard on her, but at the same time, I’m grateful to her. I don’t think I would have handled it well. Plus, I keep thinking back hoping there wasn’t something wrong with him before that I should have noticed, but missed. For now, I am in mourning for my 4-legged, hairy little son. Goodbye buddy… You will be missed.