Wednesday, May 15, 2013

saying good-bye to chloe diggers

Earlier this year, Dan and I bid the most bittersweet good-bye to our Chlo E. Diggers. 




In 2012, I remember ringing in the new year at home on the couch, so content with a hound in my lap and a husband by my side.  If we're here next year, just the three of us, I'll be happy. I got to revisit that moment 12 months later, but I knew better than to make the same wish this year at midnight.  At 10.5, Chloe had quickly started to show the signs of age. 






Weeks later, a knot behind her left ear that the vet had been watching, hoping medicine would treat, seemed to double in size overnight. It was cancer, and the vet told us she couldn't survive surgery. One Saturday morning in March, after a long night of hacking, resting only if I kept a hand on her chest, Chloe couldn't hold down her breakfast. We took her back to the doctor, but we didn't bring her home. 

Dan became Chloe's dad when she was just weeks old. She saw him through some lonely bachelor years, pooping on the floor in front of girl after girl he had hoped to date until I came along when she was 5. Dan joked to me that Chloe would be the deciding factor in the future of our courtship, that she could count on one paw the people she liked. If I met her approval I could stay around. Quickly I learned her affection could be bought with doggy ice cream. Less than a year later, she would run in circles and howl when Dan would ask her, "Where's your mom?"



She liked me a lot. She loved puppy pops. 

The night Dan got down on one knee to propose to me Chloe was behind him, her short front legs (leg-arms, as we called them) reaching up his back for his shoulders.  Together, they asked if I would stay around forever. It is my most favorite memory of the hundreds I've revisited since we stroked and sang our dog into her last nap.

In the final weeks, when I could no longer pretend Chloe wasn't slipping, my prayer was always Let her know no pain. She was very uncomfortable on that last day, it was clear, but for the most part I believe she hurt very little.  She had stopped asking for belly rubs. She had stopped snuggling with us on the couch.  She had shared all the love and bad breath she had to give, and our hearts are softer and fuller for it. 

As much as true dog people can, we adored our dainty, lazy, soft, smelly, loyal, stubborn, warm, spoiled, speckled, and perfect real girl.  We miss her every day.

13 comments:

MCW said...

Tears...what a good puppy.

DeAnna Stephens said...

OMG! I'm literally crying here at my desk. Great words/post.
Such a sweet hound doggy. :(
At least she's in no pain now and has crossed the rainbow bridge.

Katie @ team skelley said...

Oh Patra, I am so so sorry. I wish that I had some sort of meaningful words of comfort for you, but it just sucks balls. She was a beautiful girl and you gave her a wonderful, happy home. I do know how you feel, our first basset Jake Flash was a special little doggie--it hurts so much when they go. But I truly believe in Doggie Heaven and that you will see your beloved Chloe again.

Carrie C said...

Patra/Dan- I am so, so sorry. Sadly, I know exactly what its like to lose a dog that comes to mean everything. While it sounds kind of hollow- the time you had will be worth the pain you will go through in the short term from the loss. I hope Chloe and Bailey are on the other side...likely sitting on the couch, under the covers, watching the other foolish dogs romp and play while they relax and do what they do best-look cute!!

Lulu said...

Oh, No, you have me in tears this morning. Sorry for your loss, but glad you have those sweet memories!

Erin said...

Breaks my heart. So sorry for your loss, but so glad you had such a good furbaby for all those years. They are the best:)

Whitney of Washington said...

I am so very sorry to hear of your loss. Pups become not just a pet but truly part of the family. I can only imagine your pain.

Tricia said...

I am so very sorry. She certainly was a gorgeous and sweet doggy, and I know your heart break and you miss her dearly. However, it sounds like she had a fabulous life with you and your husband. Sending you lots of hugs!

Theresa said...

This post brought me to tears. My heart breaks for you & Dan. RIP Chlo E. Diggers

Leigh Powell Hines said...

Oh Patra. I'm so sorry.

Such a sweet post. I know this has been hard. What sweet memories.

Sarah Morgan Thompson said...

Oh this just made me boo hoo. So sorry you lost your girl. It's so obvious how much she was loved, and puppy love is just the very best.

Ruth said...

I am so sorry to hear that. hugs

Alayna said...

so sorry to hear about the pooch. so glad she is not in pain. dogs are such a huge part of our life. My parents' 15 year old dachshund is going down-hill. it breaks our heart:( thinking of you....

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