Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Your 2008: A Sweet, Brave Friend

(For the third straight year, I've asked a few of my readers and friends to write about their favorite things from this past year. The series begins here with a post by my friend "Dezmond," who blogs at Gonna Need a Bigger Boat.)

My favorite thing this year was Toby. We adopted him at the Animal Defense League shelter at the beginning of the summer. They had picked him up at the city pound, and who knows where he came from before that. About three months and thousands of dollars in vet bills later, Toby died. It turned out that he had heartworms, kidney failure, a tick disease, and some sort of respiratory problem. I wasn’t working at the time, so I was able to spend a lot of time with him. Toby was something special: funny, sly, independent, loving, social. I’ve had many pets (currently, a dog and a cat), but I’ve never come across an animal or person with a sweeter nature. I don’t want to dwell on that long, horrible night when his kidneys finally failed and he died in the back yard, but I learned such a lesson during those hours from this little dog. He knew he was dying; he went off to die by himself, as animals will do when they know their time is up. He was clearly shutting down, but he still maintained a grace and calm that I’ll never forget. I was reminded of his effect on people when I recently took our dog Winston to the vet for a check-up. I had not been there since August, yet the vet tech immediately recognized me and started talking about Toby. How many sick animals come and go through that place? He went on about how great Toby was, and how everyone at the office still talks about him, and how upset they all were that despite all the treatments, he couldn’t pull through. This little dog had an immediate impact on people when they met him. My favorite thing about 2008 was having the privilege of knowing Toby for three months. --"Dezmond"


Blogger Mrs. White said...

Aw, man! I think that picture just broke my heart.

7:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

geez, it's hard to stifle sniffles when you're supposed to be working!

3:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Damn yo, that was sad. I love dogs.

4:28 PM  
Anonymous Robb said...

I'm not talking to you because you got him with heart worms, but to everyone else...

Please, please, please give your dogs and cats heart worm medication on a regular basis. It costs very little and will save your pet's life.

We got a rottweiler that had heart worms. It cost $600 to treat, and almost killed him. We were lucky and he lived happily ever after. It's just a little thing that can make a very big difference.

As for your loss, I'm so very sorry. It sounds like some people, and a little dog were all far better off for having known each other.

12:20 AM  

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