July 16, 2009

Our last day and other days

Today was the was one of the most painful days of my life. We buried our best buddy. I have never felt a loss so deeply before. Some may think that is strange seeing as Kojak was "just a dog", but he was so much more than that. He was, is, a part of our family.

When I came home from the grocery store yesterday I found Kojak laying on the middle landing of the basement stairway. I knew instinctively something was wrong. It was too hot for him to be laying there and when I tried bribing him with cheese to come upstairs he just laid his head down. Tim carried him upstairs to a more comfortable place. After loving on him a bit Tim asked if his stomach felt swollen. My heart stopped. Having recently read "Marley and Me" I assumed the worst, a twisted stomach. After consulting with the vet we decided to take him right in. It was not a twisted stomach, it was oh so much worse....he had a very large tumor pressing on his spleen. His prognosis was a week at best, it was imminent that the spleen would rupture. We made the decision to bring him home for a final evening with the family and would return the following day to let him go. We spent our time laying next to him on the floor, touching him, reassuring him that he was a good dog, a very good friend, and loved unconditionally. I sure hope he understood.

After Tim brought him home we, as a family, buried him. He was wrapped in a 100 year old quilt I bought from an antique store when Tim and I got married. It seemed fitting since that was also the year he came into our lives. Ben drew a sweet picture of him and Kojak playing ball under a rainbow.



I think Kojak will love it. He was always so good with the boys. He let them climb all over him without so much as a grunt.

All day I've had flashes of memories...

-when he was a puppy and we discovered he was big enough to climb the baby gate. He ate half of a 2 foot cactus, then the sneaky stinker climbed back over the gate and looked at us with those big brown eyes like "what? I didn't do it!"

-making up reasons to go to Petsmart just because he was allowed inside. They carried his favorite squeaky carrot. I'm pretty sure we went through at least 3 of them.

-the countless meals he stole off of the counter tops.

-the way he shuffled his feet while walking through the house, yet if he'd stolen something it was a distinctive quick, quiet trot.

-he loved camping, hiking, and car rides. He just wanted to be a part of whatever you were doing.

-the way his ears would perk up as soon as you started the sentence with "You want to....?"

-how he could hear the UPS truck a mile away.

-he loved howling with the harmonica.

-how I would feel so much safer on the nights Tim worked by locking Kojak in the house with me. I just knew he'd never let anything (or anyone) get me. He was my protector.

-the way Ben called him Hoe-Jack and Alex called him Oh-Jack.

-he was a total bed hog, but I secretly loved it. Well, until he started snoring.

There are so many more memories, but I just feel so heart sick right now. And heavy, physically heavy.

I love you Kojak. Thank you for the wonderful 11 years you've been a part of us. Rest in peace my friend. I will never, ever forget you.

5 thanks for stopping by, i love comments!:

Sarah July 17, 2009 at 10:51 AM  

Oh Tabitha...I am so sorry! As you know I am thinking of you and your family. Lots of love to you!

Jaime July 18, 2009 at 9:08 PM  

I am so very sorry to hear of your loss. Please know that my thoughts are with you and your family, and know that sweet Kojak knew the great love your family had/has for him.
Take care,
Jaime

Melissa July 18, 2009 at 9:38 PM  

I know I've already said it, but I'm so very sorry. Your post brought tears to my eyes. My heart is with you. HUGS!!!

TanishaRenee July 19, 2009 at 8:13 PM  

so sorry to hear about your dog!
:(

Vicki C July 23, 2009 at 2:20 AM  

Oh man Tabitha.. I was so heartbroken for you .. I couldnt even finish reading all the way through. I am SO sorry. I know just how hard it will be when we loose Aly and Molly. I can even bring myself to think about it. they truly are part of the family!!
When we lost Pokey.. I was crying so hard on the way home from the vet.. bringing him home to burry him.. I can to stop and pull over. It was just CRUSHING. I feel you paint friend. Sending you a HUGE Hug from Nebraska!

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I'm a mom with a camera that loves exploring the world around me through my macro lens...and of course showing off my handsome little men.
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