As anybody who's been reading this blog or my forum knows, we lost one of our Boston Terriers last December. It was unexpected, sudden and everything played out very quickly. I can tell you, quite honestly, that I've not experienced that kind of grief often. I'm not ashamed to say that Butler was not "just a dog". None of them are -- they are family.
But now, we've almost come to that point again. Could be very soon, could be longer than we think. Spencer, our eldest pup -- and also a Boston -- is really on his last legs. He's totally blind and has had two hernia surgeries in the last six months but, beyond that, he just seems to be getting more feeble every day. The vet thinks he's had a mild stroke and we're not sure he hasn't had more than one. He's having trouble balancing and is starting to "tip over" even when he's sitting. He's also begun to have problems making it outside to do his business -- and, this morning, he has vomited twice. The last time, he fell over and was laying on the floor and I didn't quite know if he was going to get back up but he did.
God has already been in motion, though -- silently, as he often does, but with great purpose.
I had not been looking on Petfinder because I had no room for another dog and because it upsets me every time I see all the homeless pets. But, for some reason, I checked out the site a couple of days ago and there was a Boston Terrier listed with a local group.
No, I said. No way.
We'd already adopted a Bugg (Boston/Pug mix) after Butler's death and, even though my eldest will be soon be taking my "granddog" (Reese) away soon, we really weren't going to actively pursue getting another dog until something actually happened to one of the others.
However, there the little angel was, looking at me from the computer screen. I told Mark about him and, at first, he only said, "hmmph" but then, a few minutes later, he asked when we could see him -- because it might just be what we needed -- to have a young Boston coming in, as an old one leaves. So, the next morning, taking him at his word, I sent in an application and, well, we're supposed to meet "Angus" on Saturday. If he approves of us (he will) and we approve of him (ditto), he'll be able to come home with us that day. We don't need to wait -- he will not come to replace anybody -- he will come because he needs us and we need him.
He won't remain "Angus". All my animals are named after someone real or a character and "Angus" will be no different. We've all been thinking about names -- though we might be jumping the gun -- he's not ours yet -- but I'd like to start calling him his new name as soon as possible. I've heard that some rescue groups think that it's detrimental to give a dog a new name but, with experience, I'll just say that's hogwash. I've been in the dog-adopting business for years and I know a thing or two about it.
So, now, we wait. We watch. And, once again -- not for the first time or the last -- we prepare to say goodbye. It's more bearable knowing Spencer has lived a long, full life. But, as anyone who's looked into the trusting face of a beloved pet knows, it's never, ever easy.
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When you are offended at any man's fault, turn to yourself and study your own failings. Then you will forget your anger...Epictetus