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3
August
2014

Hello again1

We are still here, but we have had our ups and downs.  Prancer goes back and forth from eating and not eating, partly because I think her teeth hurt.  She has not had her teeth cleaned considering her kidney condition. the vet and I did not think at this juncture it would be worth the strain on her kidneys.  I wonder now if we should have done such.  The vet thinks she might have infections in her gums, however, in addition her blood work is not very good.  We went away for a week and by the first day we were gone she was at the vet with my aunt and schedule for 3 days of IV fluids.  Since she started eating he reduced her IV fluid to 2 days.  We are scheduled to go back to the vet in the AM for blood work to see if the fluids helped.  I am being realistic, but hopeful.  Her eating has been off for a few weeks now and she sleeps a lot, today I noticed she is shedding more than ever; she typically doesn’t shed.  Unfortunately this is all too familiar, Bailey started shedding so bad days before the inevitable.  Bailey’s death is still so raw for me, I am just not sure we are ready for this.  We are just about at the year mark for her diagnosis so I know we have had borrowed time for so long, I just hope we get some more.

 

My sweethearts…

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1
July
2014

Prancer, my sweet girl4

I can’t believe it is four (4) months already.  There still isn’t a day that goes by that I do not think about Bailey.  I can’t even put his ashes away, I am just not ready to close that door.  I have to say I still want him back.  It is hard to talk about him in the past tense.  I see horrible posts on emails about poor dogs that are treated so badly and I can’t even imagine how someone can do those things, how can they not love their animal family as much as I loved Bailey.  It is so confusing and sad.

On a happy note, Prancer seems to be doing OK.  She doesn’t like it when we leave her home, always looking hopefully that we will let her come with us, plus she now mastered her stare at us when we eat. What is funny she never did that before, that was Bailey’s role.  We try to take her with us as often as we can now, which she is enjoying (although she can’t seem to find her balance in my new car).  She is more attached to me than usual.  She likes to be next to me wherever I am in the house, she has also developed a sweet relationship with my daughter.  Now it isn’t that she wasn’t close to us before, she was just more aloof.  I always said she was part cat.  She likes to walk on the edges of the couch, will curl up in a ball, fall asleep on the top of a pillow, walks so stealthily through the house and can leap from couch to couch without toughing the floor.

We recently had an incident with her where she was bleeding fem her bum.  Rushed her to the ER and was happily informed she had an infection in her anal glands, which was quickly healed with medication.  She is still receiving fluids weekly and per her last blood work her numbers are a little better, but she is still in a very high ranges for kidney failure.  She was actually diagnosed Aug. 14, 2013 so we are happy with her progress.  We have been so blessed with our pups and the length of time we have had with them, but I do have to say I hope we get as much time with Prancer as we had with Bailey.

 

 

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2
April
2014

In Honor of Bailey and a Prancer Update3

It is hard to imagine life goes on.  My angel Bailey has been gone almost 5 weeks. My heart still hurts so much for him and it is so hard to still talk about him without tears.  He was the best part of me.  After he passed my daughter naturally wanted another dog but I told her we were not ready and we needed to focus on Prancer (if you didn’t see earlier blogs she has been in kidney failure).  I did tell her that if a tripawd or older dog needed us we would be there.  Well a friend of mine tagged me in a picture of a 14 year old Jack Russell Terrier mix, Duke, with cataracts whose owner had died.  Poor pup was in the house for 2 days before anyone found them.  His little face reminded me of Bailey so we jumped in and agreed to foster him as we were not sure how Prancer would react.  Unfortunately, the little guy was never neutered. We gave him a much needed bath and nail trim.

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Ya’ think him being 14 that would not be an issue…but it was.  He would not leave Prancer alone and despite her being 17 years old she was having none of that and asserted herself loud and clear.  Problem …. he did not give up and was persistent …as was she.  Afraid Prancer might eventually take him down or hurt him we had to find another place  for him.  He is the sweetest little guy.  Not aggressive at all even when Prancer asserted herself, he just backed off and tried again.  He let my daughter pick him up with no issues.  We found another foster/permanent home for him.  His new foster mom is wonderful and although she has 3 other pups he fit right in and was so comfy there.  I could tell she was already in love with him…we were too.

There is a dog’s Last Will and Testament out there and I always think of it.

I just felt to honor Bailey we would eventually help another tripawd and/or senior dog, I didn’t expect it to happen so quickly.  We didn’t get to keep Duke for very long but we did get to make sure he found a home perfect for him.  As I told my daughter helping a dog find a home is just as important as giving him a home.  When the time is right we will find the dog that is the perfect fit for us, for now we have the perfect pup for us.

So in the midst of this venture over the last few days Prancer had her annual exam and blood work.  In my heart I thought for sure she was all better.  If you met her you would never think she was 17 years old or sick.  Well, the good news is her phosphorous levels are back in the normal range, but her other numbers are still high.  The doc said she has chronic interstitial nephritis.  New words for me.  Bottom line he doesn’t know how much longer we have with her.  Could be as short as a month or as long as a year.  Because of this new we had decided we could not upset her world and bring a new dog permanently into our home… we would foster as long as she was not troubled by such.  As you read above she was.

16
March
2014

It’s Been Too Long4

It feels like it has been too long since Bailey has been gone already yet my heart still aches so much for him.  We have tried adjusting, but old habits die hard.  I still expect to see him on his pillow and my heart skips a beat when I think I left him alone in the bed and he might try to jump out on his own.

We have tried to change up Prancer’s routine to make things different for her so she doesn’t feel alone.  She is taking more car rides with us and we are taking walks at least three times a week.  She has been soaking up all her loving.  She still goes to the vet once a week for fluids and seems to be doing fine, I think.  She doesn’t seem to be craving water like she used to so I am hoping this is a good sign.  We are hopeful.

Shortly after Bailey went to higher place, we found Prancer sleeping with our Bailey stuffed animal.  My sister-in-law and I made “Bailey” for my daughter’s birthday after Bailey’s amputation .  It quickly became one of her favorites and needless to say she began sleeping with it the night Bailey left us.  A few days later we found Prancer with “Bailey”.  Here are some pics of her with “Bailey” the stuffed animal and running around with my daughter in my in-laws yard.

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A few days later my daughter and Prancer fell asleep together.  I think everyone has been looking for comfort in each other.  Bailey was our hug-a-bug.  We all cuddled with him, slept on him and he cuddled us back.

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I have had some really great friends show their support for us…we have received flowers, a beautiful bougainvillea plant, a necklace with an angel wing, a donation made in Bailey’s name to a local no kill shelter and a beautiful tripawd necklace (one for me and one for my daughter).  I appreciate them all realizing he was part of the family and we are grieving him as such.

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4
March
2014

Bailey came home today4

Prancer went in for her weekly fluids today.  It has been one week today and we picked up  Bailey’s ashes today.  Wow…I did not think that would have such a profound effect on me. I cried again as if it was a week ago.  They provided us his paw prints, gave us a little charm with a paw print, clippings of his hair with a poem about placing a piece of him (his hair)  in a locket to keep close to your heart and a wonderful box that holds 19 years of memories.  I rode home with the window open and Bailey in my lap, the way he always loved it.  It seemed the right thing to do.  I laughed a little at myself because I kept going ot close the window because it was rainy and cool out, but then remembered Bailey wouldn’t care because he loved all kinds of weather, particularly hurricanes.  In his younger years he would cry at the door during a hurricane feigning his need to relieve himself.  I would bundle up put on a harness and a leash, afraid he would be swept up in the wind, only to go outside for him to put his head up high and take in all the smells, the rain and the wind.

When I cam home my daughter told me she was sad about Bailey so I gave her the charm, which she immediately had us add to the angel wing necklace my sister bought us both. I showed her his paw print and she walked around with his paw print for a while holding it near her heart.  

My family is back together again, hopefully the healing will occur.

26
February
2014

19 years, 7 months and 19 days – A Guardian Angel Now23

I have been blessed for so long with my handsome man that on February 26, 2014 I found it was best for Bailey to join all our other loved ones in heaven. Bailey could not walk more than a few steps on his own without falling down. His little beautiful body failed him.  I believe his arthritis in his back was too much to bear.  We sat outside in the sun all day together.  He just slept on my lap for hours.  Our wonderful vet let us sit outside with Bailey while he fell asleep.  Our vet shed tears with us, completely unexpected but understood. Bailey has been his patient for about 15 years.

My heart is broken.  Bailey has slept next to me every night of his 19 years, 7 months and 19 days, other than when I was out of town and he could not travel with me.  He was a true best friend.  Tonight my daughter took his place in bed with me as we shared some tears.  He is now her guardian angel watching over her.  She envisions him with wings in heaven running and jumping through the clouds eating chocolate.  She never met my grandmother, but we talk often about her, and she tells me that he is now with her.  Bailey came home with me fitting in the palm of my hand and he went to heaven with his family by his side.  He never failed to be by my side when I was sad.  I talked to him almost nightly about my day.  He always offered kisses and licked my tears.  As he was falling asleep he gave everyone kisses and drifted off.  I wish he went on his own, I hate that I had to make that decision, but his last kisses I will take as a sign that he was thanking me for helping him.

Bailey had his amputation the end of March 2012 after his femur broke.  It was believed to be osteocarcoma, but returned as hemangiocarcoma.  He was given up to 9 months if he received 5 treatments of chemotherapy – we did two determining it was too much on his body.  He lived 1 month shy of 2 years following his amputation.  If you are reading this blog and weighing what to do right now with your dog (or cat), amputation gave my 17 year old dog 2 more years despite what the doctors said.  He adjusted quickly to life on 3 legs after living 17 years on 4.  Don’t let the fear of how your dog will do hold you back…think of Bailey and that he did it gracefully at 17.  I learned from  him that when something changes you change with it.  He got up on Day 2 post-surgery and walked outside our doggie door manuevering as if he was already adjusted to life on three legs.  Being different is a human concern not a doggie one.  He  didn’t worry about what other dogs thought, he was just happy to be with his family.

A friend passed this on to me when Bailey first had his amputation and I pass it on again to everyone (it is already posted on my blog pages):

I may be a little different, but my heart still beats the same.

I feel no pity for myself.  I feel no regret or shame.

You help me do the little things, that most can do their own.

You filled the need of my broken soul, and love is all you’ve shown.

I wouldn’t be here without you, I wouldn’t make it without you here.

I’ve been with you when you’ve had enough, I’ve kissed away your tears.

I love that you never give up on me, you won’t let me give up on myself.

Even if I had one wish tomorrow, I’d never change the hand I was dealt.

You rescued me, gave me my name, and you always say it with love.

You pet me head, you kiss my face, and give me hugs.

I’ve got nothing to give you, but you take me as I am.

You cheer me on daily, you’re my biggest fan.

You take me on our outings, I ride right next to you.

You always make sure that I’m happy, and we have fun things to do.

Many people look at us, you pretend that you don’t mind.

They ask you “why you didn’t put him down?” You said “because treasure’s hard to find.”

Run free little buddy, run free…..

Looking like a Puppy Again cropped-SAM_3076.jpg

Where's my present

Where’s my present

More presents IMG_0236 Dog Park IMG_0307 All Bailey's Friends

A sleeping boy

A sleeping boy

Bailey

My handsome man

Birthday outfit

My babies

My babies

image photo Baileyface

The best kiss

The best kiss

Bailey resting with stuffed animals

Bailey resting with stuffed animals

25
February
2014

Walking Issues4

Bailey has been having a really hard time walking.  He can’t seem to manage to hold himself up for long.  It has progressed quickly and now he crosses his front 2 paws and doesn’t take more than two steps. We have been sitting outside n the front porch together for about 2 hours.  He hasn’t budged from my lap.  My daughter has made him comfortable with her stuffed animals for him to rest with on my lap.  I am sad to say I think our time has come.  Always hoping for a rebound and this little man has had several.  You all have been such a great support for 2 years.  We met another tripawd at my vets office the other day and I shared her information with you. This site will always been in our hearts. We will keep you up to date with our progress and Prancer’s continued battle with kidney failure.

The best kiss

The best kiss

Bailey resting with stuffed animals

Bailey resting with stuffed animals

Sis, Prancer, hanging out with us

Sis, Prancer, hanging out with us

16
February
2014

My Little Guy3

My little man’s age is starting to show more each day.  He slept a lot today and barely opened his eyes.  Each day with him is a gift.  I know I have been blessed to have this little man in my life for so long.  He ages so gracefully with little complaint.  As I sit and share my heating pad with him I hope his pain is alleviated somewhat, although recognizing I can only make him so comfortable. My daughter has shed some tears with me over the last several years and loves to read all your comments.  She asked tonight if she could write her feelings and I, of course, said yes.

My daughter is 7 years old.  Here is her first blog post with Tripawds:

I feel like he is the best dog he can ever be and I love him with all my heart and he is my favorite dog.  I love him and will be sad when he passes away.It will be my saddest ever.  I love him because he is a toy and a friend. He is a big fluffy snowball to me.  He is warm and cozy.  I just love him.  He’s my dog.

Here he is sleeping soundly now.

Photo on 2-16-14 at 8.15 PM

 

And just to lighten the mood, here is Prancer.  She likes to sleep with her tongue sticking out.  We have had hours of fun with her while she sleeps.

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3
February
2014

Update2

All better for now in the senior household.  I am going to chalk those two days up to an arthritis incident.  It has been rainy, muggy and humid here in Florida.  My husband’s arthritis has been bothering him so I assume Bailey’s was too.  My poor baby.

 

Here he is this morning.

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2
February
2014

Tough Weekend4

It’s been a tough weekend so far at our house.  Friday night and most of the day yesterday Bailey had an upset belly. After some pumpkin, we finally solved that problem, but I think all the effort in trying to “go” gave him some arthritis pain.  The later part of the day he whimpered a little.  Gave him some meds and put him in my bed and let him sleep.  He woke up this am and went out to do his business, which he did with no issues, but right after collapsed straight down.  Now he has fallen plenty of times, but never straight down (always sideways).  He let out a yelp so loud that my daughter ran to get me despite her dad being outside with Bailey.  I am scared the worst has happened and that something has happened to his spine.  Much to Bailey form he is lying on his pillow not complaining.  I placed a heating pad on him and hopefully that helped.  The good news is he ate voraciously when food was offered.  Please keep your fingers crossed that he pulls out of this too and surprises us again.  I know I may have to make a decision soon, and I know I will as I never want this little guy to suffer, but I still pray he just goes on his own time in his sleep ( I know we all wish the same wish).  He is owed that after all he has endured.  Thanks again for all you constant support and good wishes.

My handsome man:

 

Baileyface


Bailey – 17 year old amputee, now 19 – A Best Friend's Tale is brought to you by Tripawds.
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