Thursday, September 13, 2007

My first dog

The first dog that was mine was Emma. I got her a couple of months after Deotrich and I moved in together. It was the fufilment of a dream that I had had of having an Airdale Terrier.

We were living in Iowa at the time and I found a classified in the paper about Airdale puppies. We went "just to see". The puppies were in a good sized pen in the barn. One puppy whipped up on all the other puppies and then jumped on top of them all and said "okay, take me home! Lets go!"

And that was Emma. Was Emma. She died tonight. She was almost fifteen and a half, way way older than most Airdales live. And she was frisking and having a good time until really recently when she began to refuse to eat. I knew then that I had better get ready for her to go.

It was peaceful and calm. She didn't appear to suffer. I did have our wonderful vet visit and make sure that she didn't suffer. But wow, I do miss her already.

How those furry creatures worn themselves so deeply into your heart.

I knew that she was uncomfortable. She's been waking me up most nights for about a month now. And I got grumpy with her. I know she forgave me. I also know that she hung around lots longer than she wanted to.

She got out when she was about six months old and got hit by a UPS truck (we guess based on her insane hatred of UPS trucks life-long). Deotrich and I bundled her into the car and drove her to the vet. I have a very strong stomach from being an EMT in another life, but as the vet examined her, I started to black out. The vet didn't give us much hope, but as I sat outside trying to regain my composure, Emma came back to life.

She came back for me once and lingered long for me. I can't begrudge her the peace she so richly deserves.

I am putting off going to bed. She slept beside me every night for the past 15 years. Every night my last thing before turning in was to scritch her and say goodnight.

Go with God, my Emma. You were a great dog.

2 comments:

Steve & Suzanne in Ghana said...

Sorry for your loss Sheron. You do seem to attach yourselves to animals, and esp. miss them when they go home. How about a picture or two of Emma, for us to remember her by.

Jim Downey said...

Ah, how they do come to be such a part of us. So sorry for your loss - she was a good and faithful friend. I'm sure the Emma-sized hole in your heart will never completely mend, but will always be a place holding the memory of love.

Jim D