Two Collies and a Mutt

Two Collies and a Mutt


This isn't goodbye

Hey everyone,
I'm sure you all know by now that we lost Lassie. He passed away at the vet August 3rd. A necropsy showed that he had pleuritis and died from pneumonia. How he got pleuritis is unknown, they could not find a cause (no injuries, no punctured lungs, no foreign bodies). The doctors who did the necropsy said our vet had Lassie on the correct medications to fight this off, however it was not a good enough concentration. Those who did the necropsy assumed this was because Lassie's vet did not know he had pneumonia. However, while we were not positive about that, his vet DID say "Sounds like pneumonia." when I told her about the fluid-y cough Lassie had that morning before we rushed him back in. So why she didn't give him the concentration of antibiotics needed in order to recover is beyond me. I'm absolutely livid about that. I'm trying not to be though, because I honestly don't know her reasoning for that.
I'm also trying not to be blindingly angry about the fact that Lassie was already gone when I wrote my last post and I had no idea thanks to a screw up at the vet (someone wrote our phone number down wrong and I guess it took them a whole day to realize they could find the correct number on the back of Lassie's tag; so much for "Favorite Vet"). I found out Sunday evening that he was gone.
A fact that still seems entirely impossible and completely untrue.
Yet he is and that is evident by the huge hole I'm left with.

Which is why I vanished. This hurts so much. More than I feel I can handle. I didn't want anyone to say the well intentioned, "I'm so sorry." Or, "I know what you're going through." Because no one is as sorry as I am and though you may know, in theory, what I'm going through (most, if not all, of us has lost a pet at some point in our lives)-- you do not know what I'm going through. I refuse to believe anyone would know exactly what I'm going through. My relationship with Lassie was too unique. His relationship with me was too unique. I don't even know what I'm going through. I've never felt like this before. I've lost pets and human family members before and each loss was so much different from the other. Each of them painful, but each one different.

This loss is too much. This loss is too unfair. This loss was too unexpected. I had no warning. Yes, he was wasn't looking so well when we took him to the vet for a weekend stay and yes, I was honestly scared. But I did not believe he was going to die. With Ella, I knew, as we drove to the vet I knew she wasn't going to make the drive there. I held her in the back seat of the car and I said my goodbyes.

I never said goodbye to Lassie. Instead, I demanded that he stay with me. When we got the call that he had passed away, I felt betrayed. Lassie was more obedient than that. He should've stayed like I asked-- begged-- him to. He's my best friend, my motivator, my protector, my everything, I don't know how to keep going without him. I feel broken.

The other day, as I cried, I was wondering why this feeling of denial wouldn't go away. Why I still felt like Lassie couldn't possibly be gone. Maybe it's just too soon for the shock to be worn off yet or... maybe Lassie did listen to me after all. Maybe he hasn't left my side at all. I can't imagine him up in Heaven with my other family members, both human and pets, but I can imagine all my other loved ones there, happy and healthy; it seems natural. But when I think of Lassie I can only see him with me, happy and healthy and unfailingly loyal to me and only me. 
Maybe this is why we were cheated out of our goodbye. The goodbye I didn't plan to have until Lassie was at least 15 years old. Maybe we weren't given the chance to say goodbye because we were never meant to. 
This isn't goodbye, it's see you later. 

I don't know what your beliefs are, but I truly believe that I will be with Lassie again and I believe that he's still with me. It's the only thing that brings me comfort right now, so if you don't believe this that is fine by me, it honestly is, but be kind if you choose to leave a comment.

I'm sorry if this post doesn't make sense or if it jumps around a lot; my thoughts are all over the place. Please forgive me if I came across as rude at any point in this post, I honestly didn't mean to sound rude at any point in this post, if I did it was completely unintentional.

I can't say when I'll post again, but I can say that I will post again. I owe a few reviews, so keep your eyes out for that.

Thank you for the beautiful flowers.

Thank you all for all your love and support and patience. It means a lot to me and Petal.

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Our hectic week

Lassie is feeling very under the weather this week. Those of you who follow us on Instagram, Facebook and/or Twitter already know this. But for those of you who don't, here's what's been happening over here...

Tuesday night Lassie threw up a few times. I didn't think much of it, Lassie's stomach is so sensitive, I just figured he ate some people food that didn't agree with him. He was fine all day Wednesday, so I was sure that was all it was. He was running, playing, eating, drinking and acting his usual self. Despite that, Wednesday night he started throwing up again, this time there was a little bit of blood in his acid-y vomit. Thursday he went to the vet (favorite vet, 45-ish minutes away) and threw up on their floor. It smelled awful. They did some blood work on him and everything looked fine. I can't remember everything they checked, but they checked a lot. Everything was within a normal range. We thought maybe it was a blockage then, though Lassie is not one to eat things he shouldn't, but you never know. He does have a hard time resisting the cooked chicken bones, though 95% of the time we take those straight to the big trash can outside, which the dogs have no access to. But better safe than sorry, so they did x-rays, but found nothing. All looked well, though he did have some gas, and he does have a bit of arthritis in his hips.

We wondered if maybe he had a stomach ulcer, which just didn't show up in x-rays. So we decided to start some medications for his upset tummy and a possible ulcer. He got a shot of Cerenia, an anti-nausea medication. They also gave him a dose of Sucralfate, for the possible ulcer, and told me to pick up a generic brand of Pepcid from Walmart.
Now he never actually got that last one, because within 30 minutes of being dosed with the first two medications, Lassie started acting funny in the car. His head was swaying and he was having a difficult time lapping up his water. Luckily we were still near the vet, so we went right back over there and had the vet come out to the car to take a look at him. She said his coloring looked good and he didn't appear to be having a reaction. She said he was probably just feeling sick and a little uneasy. She said to take him home and let him sleep it off. We did that.

Here's my Instagram update from Thursday afternoon:
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We had to carry him from the car into the house. He wouldn't walk. Or couldn't, I later realized. I hoped the drugs were just making him a little loopy. We laid him down on his dog cot to get some rest. A little while later, lifting his head became a chore. He could do it, but not for long and not well enough to drink. I started giving him water with a straw (which I later upgraded to a syringe; much easier).

Instagram update from Thursday Evening:

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All the while I'm trying not to panic to the point of sobbing hysterically. Lassie doesn't like that.

We got through one worrisome night of me waking up to syringe more water into Lassie's mouth and to help him wobble his way out to the yard to take care of business.

Friday Morning Instagram update:

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A few hours later, around 10:30 AM or so, Lassie gets up and wobbles around restlessly. I help him through the kitchen, thinking he wants to go outside, but he stops and this yellow, stomach-acid looking, vomit just falls out of his mouth. Then he wobbles his way over to the window that houses the swamp cooler and flops down in front of it. His breathing was labored and instantly I was reminded of my sweet Ella before she passed.
How I managed not to throw up at that point, I don't even know.
I called the vet and told her what was going on. She wanted Lassie in right away. They're 45 minutes away. Do I settle for one of the vets I despise here in town? Or do I take a risk and make the drive?
I called the vet here in town. He was out of town. So was the other vet. The only vet available was almost as far as Favorite Vet.
My Mom, my Dad, one of my sisters, Lassie and I piled into the car and took off. We were making the drive to Favorite Vet. They knew exactly what medications they had given him Thursday and they had his x-rays and blood work on file and, most importantly, they care the most and I trust them.
I spent the drive crying and panicking and trying not to think about a similar drive we made with Ella. Except with Ella we rushed to the nearest vet possible and she took her final breath as we whipped into the parking lot. This could not happen again. I didn't want to do that again. Not now. Not with Lassie.
 My Dad turned that 40-45 minute drive into a 30 minute (maybe less, I don't know, it still seemed so long to me) drive.
(Thank you Dad for breaking the law for my best friend).

Instagram update Friday Afternoon:

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I gave the vet this list of drugs not to use. They promised to review it and took my concerns very seriously.

Instagram update Friday Evening:

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 Friday night was a very long night. Possibly the longest night I've had in a very long time.
Or so I thought...

Saturday Morning Instagram update:
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"prayers" is the last word; it wouldn't fit in my iPhone screen shot. 

Saturday night, last night, was a much longer night than Friday. I got very little sleep. I feel like I'm missing an appendage or something. That might sound dramatic but I don't care, this is weird. Lassie has been by my side since I was 13. He's been my best friend. He got me through those awkward and awful teenage years. He got me through a lot of losses. He has taught me so much, from patience to budgeting money. He makes me smile and he makes me laugh. Unfortunately he also makes me completely crazy when he gets sick. He hasn't been this sick before. The one and only other time he spent a night at the vet was after his neuter, nearly 8 years ago.
I miss him.
Petal misses him. She's never been apart from him for this long.

Tomorrow is the one year anniversary of Ella's sudden passing.
I want good news tomorrow.
I want my boy back.
I have a pretty good feeling I'll get what I want (when I take a deep breath and force myself not to freak out, that is). I just hope I get it tomorrow.

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I'll keep you guys updated, but my Instagram, Facebook and Twitter pages will be updated first and more often, simply because it is super easy to just type everything up on Instagram and then share it to Facebook and Twitter as well. You're welcome to check those pages for updates (links to them can be found in right sidebar, those images at the top of the sidebar will take you where you want to go). I won't hear anything new about Lassie until tomorrow morning, however. I'll try and post another blog post then. If not tomorrow, then hopefully Tuesday.

Thank you guys again for all the love and support and well wishes and advise on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter! It means so much to me. I'm sorry I haven't replied to every comment, but I promise I read every one.

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Wordless Wednesday: No sleeping on the job

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Black & White Sunday: Ella

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I've been thinking about this incredible dog a lot today.
She would've been 7 years old on Friday, the 26th.
I spent Friday morning stressed and nervous; I was forgetting something.
Late afternoon things calmed down and the day was really turning around. It was becoming a really great day after all.
Then I remembered what I had forgotten: Ella's birthday.
The funny thing (but not "ha ha" funny, strange funny) is, as I remembered what day it was, my mood only improved. It brought a smile to my face. I didn't expect that. I thought I would cry, I didn't.
 I miss her. I really miss her. But her birthday, her first birthday since her passing, did not darken what was turning out to be a great day, it only made it better. I don't know why. I can't explain it. I guess I just... felt, somehow, closer to her in a way.

Today, however, I've been battling the waterworks as I look through her pictures. I miss this bossy, noisy, sweet, weird, funny, overly affectionate, gorgeous mutt.

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Me, Ella and many piles of clean laundry. Who could ask for more? ;)

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I still think about you every day, Smella Ella.♥

Today we are participating in the Black and White Sunday blog hop hosted by You Did What With Your Weiner, Dachshund Nola and My Life In Blog Years.

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