Toy Manchester Dog named Callie, August 11, 2014

Callie, August 11, 2014

It has been a difficult week. Anyone who has pets deeply embedded into family life knows that when that pet dies, it’s just like losing a family member. Callie came to us in 2001 as an energetic, full of life 4 year old rescue. What a personality she had! She was one of two “first dogs” for our son, so there are many many family memories tied her existence.

This picture was taken August 11. Callie died on August 12.

Callie became diabetic after receiving an excessive amount of steroids for a condition she was fighting off as a 5-year old. So, the daily routine of insulin morning and night became part of our routine—for 13 years. Once regulated with insulin, she was back to her vibrant, vigorous self! She took it all in stride … including the twice a day injections — followed by food of course!

She was a great companion in the garden, too. She kept an eye out for snakes and rodents, and promptly shooed them away.  She didn’t dig in the beds or damage plants–ever—she just enjoyed being outside and rolling in the sweet green grass, or the drought-singed hay grass—whatever was available.

She fought hard and never gave up, not even when the terrible seizures brought her to instances of near death… at least 5 times. We were out of town when the seizures started. She waited for us to return and greeted us with her usual full-body tail wag (at least as best she could move by then). Tumors in the brain, we didn’t know, then she went in a matter of days.

Dear little Callie girl, We will miss you and here’s just part of what we learned  from you:

1. Keep the bad things in short-term memory and the good things in long-term memory.

2. Get up every morning and stretch!

3. Follow the rules you impose on others.

4. Take care of those you love; watch out for them, help keep them safe from the dangers of this world.

5. Embrace every morning and every opportunity for joy.

6. Explore your world, you just never know what you will find.

7. Help keep the house clean! (She found bits and pieces of paper that she would pick up and bring to us. After receiving treats for such actions, she continued until her eye sight began to fade early this year.)

8. Eat healthy snacks (she loved carrots for treats — and they were “diabetes friendly”).

9. Take long walks in nature, it calms the restless mind.

10. Chronic illness is not enough to stop joy and happy times; make the most of EVERY day.

11. Always Always Always, openly and freely show how much your loved ones mean to you … every day … every time they return—even if it was just a trip to the grocery store or a short errand.

Thank-you, little Callie girl, for all the fun and happiness you brought to our lives. We will miss your bright spirit!