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Thora, my ultimate dog.

Having one senior dog is tough, having three?  It really is a lot to deal with…  but I wouldn’t part with even one of our oldies.  Today’s challenge was to photograph something old.  I jokingly asked my husband to pose for me after telling him what my challenge for today was, obviously he turned me down.  😉  I thought about snagging a snapshot of one of our antiques…  in the end though, Lily-Ann’s idea won out.  Sweets wanted his supper, Brandibuck wouldn’t sit still, so Thora it was.  I’ll admit, I don’t like photographing her with my iPhone.  It just doesn’t do her justice.  She really is a gorgeous, gorgeous dog.  I have a hard time believing she’s twelve.  I remember the first time I saw her in person – after her trek with the underground railroad (traveling to us relay style driven bit by bit by volunteers like ourselves) – I broke down in tears.  She really was the most beautiful puppy I’d ever seen, and to this day I’ve never met her equal…  not in brains, drive, beauty, or spirit.  She is a dog who is unmatched in every way, and I have been so blessed to have her as part of my life.

jan23b

The light seems crazily yellow here…  but that’s a camera phone for you.  😉

photo a day challenge for january

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Thora, Bucky, and Sweets; our old dogs.

I started writing a post about old dogs…  got about a paragraph in, and deleted it.  The fact of the matter is that we now have three old dogs, and as much as I love old dogs (seriously, I’m a sucker for a senior dog, there’s just something about them) I worry for our hearts.

We’ve only ever had one senior dog at a time before.  And it wrenches your heart out when they leave you.  Time helps you heal, but the hole they leave in your heart never completely closes back over.  I imagine my heart looks like swiss cheese.  I’ve had far too many go on ahead to Rainbow Bridge to wait for me.  I wonder how many more holes I can handle.

Thora.  Can’t believe she’s 11.  I have no idea how it happened.  I remember the day she arrived (via the underground railroad – volunteers each driving a leg of the journey to bring her here).  I cried when I saw her for the first time.  She was everything I had ever hoped for.  Lurchers are fabled as the “ultimate” dog, and she really is.  The idea that she’s a senior is just so foreign.  She’s still my “baby girl”.  She’s still that ultimate hunter and protector – the perfect dog.

Brandibuck is 12.  Boy, she and I have weathered a lot of storms.  She was my Service Dog for a number of years.  I retired her officially at 8.  She was ready to just be a pet, she didn’t want to deal with stores and people, and traffic, and crowds any more.  Now she just has to patrol the yard…  keeping everyone in line.  She’s always been a momma dog.  Keeping the unruly puppies in check.  She’s what we call a gentle alpha, though the last year or so she’s kinda let the alpha part slip (allowing Thora to step in).  She’s always been a bit of a princess too – unless she’s rolling in the dirt and mud.  Good grief.  I wonder how I ever kept her in show coat.  Oh right!  I used to brush her long locks every day.  I enjoyed it too, she mostly just tolerated it.  I think she was relieved when I finally relented and clipped her down.  My funny little Havanese…  my little Neezer.

Sweets.  Well…  Caesar.  He hasn’t been with us that long.  But like I’ve mentioned, we’re kinda suckers for an old dog.  CZ came here for his “last hurrah” – to breed to a couple of girls.  It didn’t take long for us to realize he wasn’t going anywhere, that at 11 he’d found his forever home.  He’s very much the king of the castle here.  The girls all pander to him (except Thora, who’s top dog, and she mostly lets him do his own thing) and the people all dote on him, heck even the cat – who avoids all the other dogs – will love him up.  He’s one seriously spoiled old dood.  And he really is the sweetest little old man Chi, which is why I’ve dubbed him Sweets (and yes, it’s a nod to Bones as well).  We’re quite happy he chose us as his family.

So there we are.  Three old dogs.  One who joined our family when she was two, one at three months, and one at 11 – yet all are within a year of one another.  I can’t imagine how our hearts will fare when they begin to say goodbye.  I truly hope it’s a long, long ways away.

 

one of our wedding photos, with three of our dogs

Our wedding in 2006; with Thora, Brandibuck, and Nico (now at the Rainbow Bridge).

You can meet some of our dogs here:  http://www.dogster.com/family/373333  But it’s a few years out of date.  Guess it’s time to think about updating it (especially seeing how half our dog aren’t even there).  😉

Hail Caesar!

Well, Caesar arrived on his Westjet flight early this evening.  Sweet little old man Chi.  😉  It’s been a while since we’ve had a senior Chihuahua in the house.  And he already reminds me of Noelle…

There really is nothing like a wee little old Chihuahua.  They’ve got such spunk, and are just the sweetest little things.  I remember Noelle – near the end…  couldn’t see, couldn’t hear, only had four teeth…  but she was still determined to boss around the other dogs at her play group.  Her silly tongue hanging out the side of her mouth, giving sideways kisses.  I’d forgotten just how much I missed her until this silly old boy showed up with his sideways kisses.

And just like Noelle, Caesar is a total Daddy’s boy.  Right from the moment they got off the plane – both of them instantly had a connection with Damon.  Sure, I’ll do in a pinch…  but Damon lights their faces right up.  Nothing like the glow of an intensely happy Chihuahua, basking in the love of the person they’ve chosen as theirs.  And I see that glow already on Caesar – even in the couple hours he’s been here.

Caesar was supposed to be coming here for his “last hurrah”.  His sperm tested out well, and so he flew out here to sire some puppies this year.  But I can’t help but wonder if he may also have found his retirement home with Damon – who appears to be the person of his dreams.  😉

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