Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Dog Gone Disappointment

When my grandfather passed away last July, he left behind his four legged companion of 10 years, a Cocker Spaniel named Cricket. They adored one another and were almost inseparable. While my grandfather was in the hospital recovering from his broken hip, my mother and I would take turns caring for Cricket. He wasn't the friendliest dog to strangers and barely tolerated other family members, but for some reason he liked me almost as much as my grandfather. He would bite you if you did something he wasn't particularly fond of. He had bit my grandfather, my mother and myself, as well as snapped at everyone else, including the great grandchildren. Cricket was a sad little dog in many ways. My grandfather over fed out of love, the dog was almost twice his ideal weight at nearly 50 pounds! The little fella was miserable in summer with all the hair and extra weight. He had lots of medical problems and a run of bad luck. He broke a leg going down the steps, the same one twice. My grandfather accidental shot the poor thing in the back leg while shooting at some stray cats that were taking over the yard.
The dog took as much medicine as my grandfather, almost $300 worth a month. My grandfather never complained about how much he spent on the dog, though he would about everything else he spent elsewhere. When my grandfather was laid up in the bed at home during the last couple of months of his life, Cricket was right by his bedside. It was a challenge to get him to leave to take him outside to do his business. My grandfather always asked about his little dog while he was in the hospital and Cricket would always be lying at the glass doors waiting for his return. The only time I've ever adamantly disagreed with my mother was over the dog, after my grandfather had died. The poor thing was in that big house alone, except the three times a day we would go to feed him and let him out. His health was bad and his medication was expensive. He missed my grandfather something terrible. He would always go to his room to look for him when we let him back in. The dog was miserable, my mother was wore out from trying to care for him and grieve the lose of her father. I wasn't bothered either way. I was honored to take care of Cricket like my grandfather had asked. My mother decided to have him put to sleep. I fought hard for the little fella. I cried over it, but there was nothing I could do. I was unemployed and couldn't afford the medication and he didn't get along with Izzy. My mother asked if I would go with her to the vet to have it done. I declined. I just couldn't do it. I told my father to go. After it was done, my father buried him in the edge of the yard, under an ironwood tree. Sort of fitting for how hard the dog's life had become. I hope him and my grandfather are reunited in heaven and having themselves a grand ole time.


A Lewis said...

oh boy, that doesn't make me happy....the poor little dog. But he sounds like he was not a happy fellow...the dog, that is! I hate to hear about those sorts of situations. I hope things settle down and pan out nicely.

T.E.W. said...

Sorry to hear this. I know its hard in this economy for everyone and everything and that includes pets. It would kill me if I had to get rid of Lily because of not being able to afford her. I would never steal for myself though if I needed dog food for Lily I would probably do it.

Take care

Constant Motion said...

A fitting tale of love and compassion for two souls connected once before in life and quite possibly reunited in the afterlife. Thanks for sharing this with us, your readers. :)

Lemuel said...

You know you made me cry, didn't you? I so very much relate to your grandfather. Even as I type this, my girl is sitting nearby on the bed watching my every move and waiting for me to finish so we can go lie together on the couch. She waits at the dorr for me every day and smothers me with kisses when I come home.

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