Last night, I had to put one of our dogs down. She would have been 17 dog years old in March. This was the dog that arrived on the day the Chicago Bulls won their last championship. This was the dog we purchased because my older son wanted another dog (we had been dogless for about 4 years) and he placed pictures of dogs all over the home. And he promised to take care of the dog. And when we got the dog, he was true to his word and did take exceptional care of her.
This was the dog that my youngest son named D.W. (Dolores Winifred), because we told him that the dog was female and that his first choice for a name, Arthur, was a male name. Many of you who have young children know that Arthur is an aardvark and many books and shows have been written about him. So he selected Arthur’s sister’s name instead.
This was a dog that my oldest son convinced me to breed and she had six puppies, which is a big litter for a Soft-coated wheaton terrier. And she was six years old which is considered old to be a first time mother, which we were unaware of at the time. So when the puppies were not doing well, we took turns staying up through the night with them and making sure they were placed on D.W.’s stomach for feeding and we used warm cotton balls to stroke their abdomens so that their digestive systems would work and my friend, Maggie, called a vet in Poland to ask his advice about the care and feeding of puppies and he said to just bring them over to his office. Obviously, that could not happen so we did our best and they all survived.
We used different color nail polish to differentiate them when they were puppies and called them the Red Puppy, The Orange Puppy, The Green Puppy and so forth. We kept the Red Puppy and renamed her Roxy and she is still with us today. She is grieving as dogs will do. She grieves with us.
Dogs pierce your heart and become part of your family. Farewell, D.W.