Life Lesson: Being a Dog Mom
This past week has been one of the hardest weeks of my life. This past week, one of my dogs passed away. He was our best friend, he was our dog son.
I know this isn't a fashion post, but this is something I want to share for everyone who owns a dog, who has a dog as a sibling, who is currently a dog mom or who is a new dog mom. This is for you.
Cherish every moment with your puppy. Whether they chewed up your favorite shoes or if they stole your food from the table, hold on to those times because those are memories for you and your dog. Dogs teach you to love unconditionally. Dogs teach you that no matter what, they're always there for you.
Michael and I owned a German Shepherd name Leo. Let me tell you, he was the best dog in the world. Everything he did for us was out of love. He was so smart and obedient, you couldn't possibly ever stay mad at him when he did do something wrong.
We also own a white Husky name Ivy and she is the first born, so when she was little she was a wild hellion. Soon after we got Leo and training him was a piece a cake because he was so sweet and understanding. They were polar opposites and fought a lot, but at the end of the day they were brother and sister. As much as Ivy irked Leo, he loved her so much. He was her best friend.
Leo was talkative and expressive. He would let you know when he was happy, sad or just excited. You could tell how much he missed us after we would come home from work, he would swing his hips back and forth and his tail would be wagging. Literally, his hips didn't lie. He was our guard dog. He protected us and loved us with all his heart. I remember one time, he wouldn't leave my side when I was really sick. He wanted me to know that he was there to take care of me.
Unfortunately, with German Shepherds, they have a lot of health issues. We knew this. We knew what we were getting into. We just didn't think it would happen so soon. We had just celebrated his first birthday back in May. We thought we had ten more years with him.
One day, he got really sick and he was rushed to Urgent Care. He lost a lot of weight and was really slim for his age. We were scared because we thought he might have HGE. Hemorrhagic gastroenteritis (HGE) is a disease of dogs characterized by sudden vomiting and bloody diarrhea. The doctor gave us the impression that he would be okay with the antibiotics and meds that they gave him. Soon after, he was back to normal. He was happy and fought with Ivy and gave us all the sugar and loving. Then we noticed his skin condition was getting worse (he had dry and flaky skin. Common for German Shepherds) We took him back to the vet to get that checked out. They gave him more meds, antibiotics and steroids. We were really scared and nervous for him. When we came home, he wasn't acting the same. Next thing we knew, we were back at the vet. They did blood work and x rays, everything you name it. This was OUR dog, this was OUR baby boy. We were willing to do everything we could to make him feel better. Unfortunately, that wasn't enough. He was in such critical condition, there wasn't much we could do for him.
I thought the world was crashing around me. I never experienced losing someone who was so close to me. I never experienced death before. Holy cow, did I cry. Michael and I cried so hard, all we could do for Leo was to hold him and tell him how much we loved him. How much everyone loved him. He was the best dog. He was so weak, he could barely hold on, but he knew how upset we were and he held on until the VERY end. When he took his last breath, it was like a sigh of relief. It was like he was telling us that it will be okay, that he will now be guarding us from Doggy Heaven.
It did not feel like it was real to me. I screamed and cried. I said this was UNFAIR. I didn't understand. He was such a good dog.
Yes, he was a good dog, but I realized he was suffering. He didn't deserve that. I realized he lived a good life with us. He experienced so much within his life time, even though it was short. He gave us joy. As angry and sad that I am, we loved him so much, we had to let him go.
Please, when I tell you, doing every little thing with your dog counts for them, I mean it. Let your fur babies know you love them as much as they love you. One thing I learned as a dog mom is be patient. Your dog is learning with you. Don't take the little things for granted. Spoil your puppies, go on long walks, take them on road trips with. Let them experience life as much as they can. Let them be along for the ride, sitting right by your side.
If I could add extra years for Leo, I definitely would, but he's in a better place now. He knows how much we miss him. He knows how much he was loved. He will forever be our baby boy.
Thank you so much for reading. xoxo
R.I.P my sweet baby.