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Dizzying Intellect » Empty

Empty

Goliath just died.

Update 4/2 - I spent my 20th birthday in the hospital with an e.coli infection in my kidneys and a 108° fever, and I’ve always thought that I wouldn’t ever have a worse one. So much for that.

I guess as deaths go, it went as well as I could have wanted. I mean, it was horrible, maybe the worst thing I’ve ever experienced, and if I ever hear another sound like his last breath, I’ll kill myself. But I didn’t have to put him down, it was fast, and he didn’t die alone. And he had a very long, mostly good life — I mean, an almost-13 year old Saint Bernard is just ridiculous. They almost never live past eight or nine. I don’t know how obvious it is, but I never cut myself any slack for anything. Ever. But all of the nurses and doctors (and my own vet, several times in the past) told me that for him to be that old, especially still being in good shape, I did a really good job caring for him. I’m not an affirmation-needy person, but I really needed to hear that.

I don’t have any family or real friends here, and I can’t lift him. Couldn’t lift him. I had no idea what to do, and no one to call. I went into the hall, and my neighbor, whom I barely know, happened to be coming in. I asked her if she knew any strong guys, who could help me. She took me into her apartment, sat me down, turned on the tv, and took care of everything. She got a young couple from upstairs, and they wrapped him up and carried him to my car, and she drove me to the emergency vet and stayed with me the whole time while I kissed his nose and paws over and over and said goodbye.

I honestly have never experienced such kindness. Not from my parents, not from people that I considered friends, not from people that I thought I loved or loved me. I’m still pretty numb, but it just underscored the fact that he was literally the only thing I had. I have no idea what to do with myself now.



Better times. Not very flattering pictures of me, but they make me smile.

22 Comments

  • By funklord, April 1, 2009 @ 10:39 pm

    I am so sorry.

  • By Tanya, April 2, 2009 @ 12:31 am

    Thanks. You’re the only blogger who ever met him, I think, however briefly. He was a good boy. A handsome, wonderful boy.

  • By radix, April 2, 2009 @ 12:43 am

    I’m so sorry. What a ^&%&^%* thing to happen on this of all days.

    Wishing I could do more, you have my condolences.

  • By Robb Allen, April 2, 2009 @ 7:35 am

    My deepest condolences.

  • By matilda444, April 2, 2009 @ 10:07 am

    I’m so very very sorry!

  • By Stacy, April 2, 2009 @ 11:14 am

    I’m so sorry. If we can do anything for you let us know.

  • By og, April 2, 2009 @ 11:49 am

    I’m so sorry for your loss.

  • By Erica, April 2, 2009 @ 12:03 pm

    So sorry to hear, Tanya. :(

    I’m glad you were with him and that your neighbors were there with you.

  • By Albert, April 2, 2009 @ 1:23 pm

    Terrible news. My condolences. I hope your memories of him bring you some comfort.

  • By Matt, April 2, 2009 @ 2:16 pm

    I’m terribly sorry, Tanya. What a great thing for your neighbors to do.

  • By Erin, April 2, 2009 @ 4:37 pm

    I’m just as sorry as I can say. Pet deaths just break my heart. And I’ve never had a pet so long.

    Maybe there is a friendship to nurture with your neighbor. I hope so, anyway.

  • By treppenwitz, April 2, 2009 @ 4:40 pm

    I am so, so sorry for your loss. You did right by your friend and companion.

  • By Kurt P, April 2, 2009 @ 5:54 pm

    I had to put one down, too and I know how hard it is.
    You did good by him.

    I’m sorry for you.

  • By OrangeNeckInNY, April 3, 2009 @ 11:55 am

    My heart goes out to you. Losing a loved one is never easy. Take comfort in knowing that though his physical shell is gone, his spirit lives on and he is with you always. I don’t know if you believe in the afterlife, but I’ve had personal experiences with the paranormal, so I can honestly say that death isn’t the end; it’s only the beginning. Eternity is forever and you will see him again. You’ve made the most of his short time here on Earth and that is what matters. That in the short time here, he was truly loved and that he loved you unconditionally.

    “Death is not the end of Life; it’s what makes us complete.”
    -from the Hopi-

    God bless you.

  • By hecate, April 3, 2009 @ 5:06 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss.

  • By DirtCrashr, April 3, 2009 @ 6:58 pm

    I’m so sorry. I still have a picture of our dog Raider who passed away when I was off in College, in 1978. I look a the picture and remember the unconditional love.

  • By Toastrider, April 5, 2009 @ 10:51 pm

    One of my beloved basset hounds just passed away a couple weeks ago. 9 years old, but cancer got her.

    Losing a companion and friend like that is like having a hole cut in your heart. I still look for her (and so does my other hound). I’ve actually called for her once or twice (or started to) before remembering.

    Perhaps the sole consolation is that you’re not alone. Many, many people have endured what you must, including myself. If you need to talk about it, do it. If you need to cry, do it. God knows I’ve done both, and I’m not ashamed to admit it.

    But if you did your best to give that dog a happy life and a good home, then hold your head high, because there’s nothing to be ashamed of. Treasure your memories, and pray that there will be a reunion at that final station we all arrive at someday.

    “Near this spot are deposited the Remains of one who possessed Beauty without Vanity, Strength without Insolence, Courage without Ferocity, and all the virtues of Man without his Vices. This praise, which would be unmeaning Flattery if inscribed over human Ashes, is but a just tribute to the Memory of Boatswain, a Dog.”
    –Lord Byron

  • By Joan of Argghh!, April 6, 2009 @ 6:36 pm

    Oh, Hon. Lo siento. I feel for you and your loss. I think on C.S. Lewis’ idea of dogs in Heaven; that they are more doggie and human at once. I’m pretty sure they are angels.

  • By The Pajama Pundit, April 9, 2009 @ 10:22 am

    Tanya, I just read this and I’m so sorry for your loss. I wish I could reach through the blogosphere and offer you a hug.

  • By Rachel Keane, September 21, 2009 @ 11:59 am

    Tanya:
    I used to read your posts over on Redsugar. I was noodling through the computer and came on your old site and pictures of your fuzzy boy. I played around a bit more and found this site..and when I put in his name, found he had passed.
    I remember when you posted his hip surgery, and how hard you worked with him to get over his abandonment issues. I’m so sorry that he’s gone, but what good, well-loved live you gave him.
    Hugs.
    Rachel Keane

  • By Tanya, September 21, 2009 @ 1:23 pm

    What an amazingly nice thing to say, out of the blue. I still miss him so much, and it’s hard to remember sometimes that I did my best with him. So thank you for that.

  • By Rachel Keane, September 23, 2009 @ 6:43 pm

    Thank you for your reply. All day after sending it, I dithered wondering if it had been a major F*** up and was going to just make you sad…I’m glad the good memories seem to be having more weight than the bad.

    I’m stealing this from “Pretty Woman”…but somehow the bad stuff is always easier to believe about ourselves than the good. You took a HUGE dog that had been abandoned several times by other owners with, ahem, commitment issues, and catered to him and loved the hell out of him. There are some people who don’t give as much to their children as you did to G. And he paid you back by worshipping you with his entire furry soul. It was a fair trade, I think.
    I have nothing to gain by telling you this, and I live half way across the country…but I have this theory that sometimes people need to know what the view looks like from the outside.
    Tanya, you did good.

    Best wishes,
    Rachel Keane

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