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Digging a Grave Sucks

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Bard2dbone, Jul 10, 2004.

  1. Bard2dbone


    Aug 4, 2002
    Arlington TX
    No. That was not some witty attention getter. It is the hot, sweaty, muggy truth.

    My Dalmation, Polka, died today. She needed to. She was about 12 to 12 1/2 years old. In dog years that's roughly ancient. She looked bad this morning when I got off work. I went out to pet and feed her and she could barely get up. I went to sleep this morning worrying that this week, or maybe even today or tomorrow, I would have to take her to the vet for that visit. But when I woke up this evening my wife and daughter were saying "I think she's dead." She was still warm but only breathing agonally. I hope she knew we were with her.

    Then she was gone.

    We are going to plant a tree to mark her grave in the back yard but I haven't decided what kind. My wife suggested Dogwood as the most poetically appropriate. The ability to make that kind of joke when I can't is a good reason to marry someone even if I hadn't thought she was wonderful otherwise.

    I'm going back to digging now. :(
  2. That really sucks. I know what it's like to lose a loved pet. Polka will be in my prayers.
  3. Sorry man. The tree idea is good, though. New life.
  4. Ericman197


    Feb 23, 2004
    It's rough. I've had quite a few dogs die on me... the count is now 3, and Max isn't looking so good right now. My first dog I only knew as a baby. Her name was Bootsy and she was a purebread Akita. She was one of the first Akitas to be imported into America, some time during the 70's. Her father was a showdog and she was absolutely stunning. She would've been VERY expensive, but we had a deal going with the breeder that we would forfeit the puppies to her, but as it turned out, she was unable to conceive.

    Having a dog that is for all practical purposes a wolf is a very interesting experience. She was pack oriented; she wouldn't listen to positive commands, but if you told her not to do something, she'd never do it. When she was a puppy, all the dogs in the neighborhood wanted to kill her, and for good reason; she was a dog killer. She ended up mostly killing small animals but wound up in quite a few fights with other dogs. We were able to restrain her in all but one case; the yappy terrior. The only dog who was not afraid of her was the yappy terrior. It would taunt her day in and day out, knowing that it was well protected in it's fenced in yard next door. As fate had it, the yappy terrior escaped one day to roam the neighborhood. As soon as my parents came home, Boo bolted out the door, hunted the terrior down, and ripped it apart. Fortunately, this was close by and my parents were able to restrain her. The terrior sustained serious wounds, but since my dad was still in surgery at that time, he was able to operate on it himself. The injuries weren't too severe, but it required quite a few stiches and a lot of bandaging.

    As Boo grew older, her senses dulled. One day she was laying by the window following a rabbit with her eyes, when she attacked my father. He was ok, but he needed plastic surgery. It was at that point that we had to put her to sleep.

    The next dog was Tammy. She was a stray whom a local couple found in a dumptser. They were going door to door asking people if they wanted the dog or knew anyone who did. She was a very loving and sweet dog, so we couldn't say no. Tammy was a mutt, and we could never quite figure out what breeds she was composed of. It seemed as if she were part German Sheppard and part Coyote. She had the appearance of a German Sheppard and acted much like a coyote; she would howl and vocalize and was quite the scavenger. We nicknamed her the mouser because she had great success at catching moles and mice to give to us as presents, whereas Boo preferred larger game like rabbits, and tended to eat them herself. Unfortunately, Tammy was afflicted with cancer in her leg, and it spread throughout her body. She died right after I left for school one day; she waited for us to see her. Tammy was a great companion, but not such a good guard dog. Strangers didn't particularly bother her.

    The next dog was Sheeba, a German Sheppard. We fell in love with her at a local pet store while we were shopping for... fish supplies I think. Unfortunately, as she got older, she became meaner and meaner. She was nasty to everyone, including us. At around 7 months old, we had to put her to sleep. I wasn't particularly saddened by her death, but it was unfortunate that we had to give her up. She wasn't a bad natured dog, just crazy. The lesson here is never to buy from puppy mills.

    Then we got Max. Max is at the opposite end of the spectrum as Boo. As a lab, he's one of the friendliest dogs you can get. He's not aggressive or yappy, and he's the gentlest dog you could meet. Of course, he's not particularly fun to be around, and he's VERY VERY naughty. He steals anything and everything he can get, and is to this day ( 7+ years later ) not housebroken. Max is probably not one of the smartest labs out there, actually, he may in fact be retarded. He's a very loving dog though and absolutely BRILLIANT at stealing things; he's just not particularly well behaved.

    Then finally we got Youncer pup. My sister had always wanted a German Sheppard, and we figured we could handle 2 dogs. Youncer pup is somewhere in the middle of the spectrum... she's not particularly gentle, but she's not a killer either. She's incredibly friendly, but she's not particularly good around old people or children; she has the playfulness of a lab but doesn't have the self control that an akita would have. Nevertheless, she's the smartest dog we've had yet; she understands dozens of commands, can open doors, and keeps Max in line. Purebreed German Sheppards of the German variety ( much lighter weight and smaller size ) are awesome. American German Sheppards tend to be heavier ( 90+ lbs. ) and less intelligent than the originals.
  5. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Sorry to hear about Polka - been there, done that, and it never gets any easier. At least you gave her a good home and lots of love.

    Time for a new puppy? Puppy love always helps heal a broken heart...
  6. Bard2dbone


    Aug 4, 2002
    Arlington TX
    Actually we got the puppy about a year ago. Her name is Jazzy. She is a beagle-sheltie or beagle-corgi mix. She is sweet tempered, high energy, and generally adorable. She and Polka got along really well untill just very recently. I'm guessing that any old woman living with a rambunctious teenager would feel testy too.

    I think Jazzy is going to get lonely now. I may have to look for another pup as well, after all.
  7. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    Sorry to hear it. Losing a pet is always hard. :(
  8. Sonorous


    Oct 1, 2003
    Denton, TX
    Sorry to hear about that. It is always sad when things like this happen, but it is good that she lived a nice long life and had the oportunity to listen to some rocking bass riffs.
  9. oversoul

    oversoul fretless by fate

    Feb 16, 2004
    Yeah, they can get kinda wacky, I remember one time were I was with a friend at a cafe and this black labrador entered with his owner, he was really nice but got so excited from being petted that he tried jumping over the table and spilled my beer all over me!But it was cool, they're damn sweet dogs :D
  10. I love both dogs and cats. Pets become part of the family, and I have a tough time letting go when that time comes. I just get so attached to them.

    I hate to hear about your loss.
  11. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Sorry about your loss.

    We don't have a dog, but our soundman has the biggest pit bull I've ever seen. He's dumber than a stump and, since they cut off his nuts (making him look very sleek "down there"), very mild-mannered. He ran over a truck once, but he's not dead. Just dumb.
  12. Sorry to hear that, in the old days, when my parents were still married, I can remember we had 2 dogs, Ramses and Ares, I actually miss the dogs, they were great :)
  13. very sorry to hear, Bard. try to remember all the good times when she was a wee missy, chasing after the balls and running around crazily!
    hope you're OK.

    my pup, Blue, we had a bit of an "off" day yesturday, not listening to me, chewing paper when I put it down for him, chewing this which has frayed ends - eating bits that come off. but when im thinkin' now, its quite funny, the way he trots off with a fresh piece of newspaper and then shreds it. tonight he caught a toad and picked it up! i didnt know what to do! im so thankful he got a bad taste, and didnt bite the wee fella, just dropped him a few seconds later! -toad is OK, still alive or.. well.. liekly having a stroke. heh.

    best to ya Bard, maybe you could write a song in a polka fasion? ;)

  14. aleyman

    aleyman Guest

    Nov 1, 2002
    You're, right, he must be giant :D
  15. Joe Boom

    Joe Boom

    Jun 25, 2004
    I am truely sorry to hear of your loss. 12 years is a long time for a Dog. From what you have written, I will bet that those were 12 great years for Polka.
  16. Mobay45

    Mobay45 The artist formerly known as "Big Daddy"

    Apr 28, 2004
    Irving, TX
    My deepest sympathies are with you and your family. I lost my good buddy Trevor in March and I'm not sure I will ever get over losing him. He was a little curly haired 12 year old Cornish Rex cat and was almost always with me when I was home. He got cancer and we had to put him down. We stayed with him until the end. I still have a hard time talking about it
    Anyway, I really do feel your pain.
  17. Razor


    Sep 22, 2002
    I had a 2 year old Shi-Tzu back in 98' that came down with a very rare blood disease. I had to go out of town (8 hour drive) and my wife at the time was 8 months pregnant with our son. We were very close to this dog, as we are with most animals, I was calling in at night to check on things and see how the dog was doing...as I was talking to my wife he died in her lap and we both lost it, on the phone. I felt even worse because I couldn't be there and had to get some friends to go to my house at midnite and take our pup to be buried. My wife told me that was one of the worst nights she can remember. My heart goes out to you..I can only imagine how difficult that was.
  18. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear

    Aug 14, 2000
    Sorry for your loss. Remember the good times and know that she led a long happy life. It's amazing how the years fly by.
  19. Truly sorry to hear about your dog...never easy, but sounds like it had a nice full life. Don't know how I'll get along when the eventuality hits my pup someday....

    I just had to bury my Daughter's hamster. She had it for 2+ years. Hit her hard. Had to have a little service...she said some things...I made a little cross.... her first real experience with death...but she understands.

    Mojo to ya bud. When you finally heal, it's new pup time. v:O) Hang in there man.
  20. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    I am sorry for your loss.
    A couple months ago my wife and I adopted 3 year old Newman, a Beagle Corgi mix. Very sweet disposition, sometimes high energy. He loves to run.