"I’m currently sitting at my kitchen table, trying to figure out the words for this post. A lot has happened in my life over the past few months, but nothing has really prepared me for this. Over the past year, maybe even longer, my mom, brother, and I have had conversations about this and knew that the time would come, but we didn’t know when it would happen.
Tomorrow night, we are bringing my lovely, amazing dog Oscar to the vet one last time.
My dad was less than pleased, my grandma said that Oscar had “wolf in him” and was terrified. Over the next few months, Oscar escaped through a hole in the door and chased down a cyclist, was so strong that he pulled me over and dragged me down the street, and managed to run away numerous times. But he always came back. My dad and grandma both quickly changed their minds about Oscar. Oscar ran away a little less, and mastered some impressive tricks. He knew how to give his paw (both of them, actually, because clearly he’s ambidextrous), beg on command, speak, roll over, stay, and eat a dog biscuit off of his nose. We also trained him to be “gentle,” in which he would eat food from your hand gently; to “bring,” which involved licking a yogurt container and bringing it back to the kitchen and dropping it next to the garbage can; and to “sing,” in which he would howl on command. My uncle began referring to him as the Einstein of dogs and his name stuck with him throughout his life, despite getting sprayed by skunks multiple times and running into a glass door once.
A few years ago, we noticed that Oscar began walking with a limp. As the limp worsened and his back legs began having problems, my mom talked to the vet and tried to figure out what we could do. Some illnesses were written off and some were believed to be the cause, but we never got any testing done to determine anything for sure, because by this point, Oscar was already getting old and we didn’t want to put him through too much. So my mom did some physical therapy with him at the vet’s office, which included walking on a water treadmill and doing various exercises to keep his strength up. My mom also invested in Eddie’s Wheels to help him walk. His wheels helped him for awhile, but within the past few months, it has been clear that his front legs aren’t as strong as they once were and Oscar is not as happy as he once was.
My mom, brother, and I have discussed over the past few months when the time would come and what we would do. Would we know it was the right time? Would Oscar tell us when he was ready? Would we never have to make that decision and he would do it on his own? Over the past few weeks, we have known that the time was getting closer and that we would have to make a decision sooner rather than later. We have honestly done everything we can and have prolonged his life years beyond what would’ve been possible had we not done physical therapy, gotten Eddie’s Wheels, and gone out of our way to make sure our dog was comfortable and happy.
Tomorrow at 7 p.m., we are taking our lovely dog into the vet. He’s 14 1/2, which means he’s lived a long and happy life. And the most amazing part about it is that despite being completely dependent on us for the past couple of years, despite his inability to walk and run and do all the things that dogs do, up until recently, Oscar seemed happy. I have always felt that dogs hold all of the qualities that ideally, humans would possess, but their purity and their ability to love and exude happiness exceeds what I believe any human is capable of.
I’m not quite sure how to wrap this up, but I am going to include a collage I made (which unfortunately only has pictures from the past few years).
To read the original post and other writings please visit here. I thank my daughter, Gloria for allowing me to share her personal memories about our very special boy.