Saturday, September 24, 2011

Day 16,789 Gratitude

Last night, with heavy hearts, we said goodbye to our 12-year-old greyhound, Fred. He spent his first two years of life being trained to race as Sign Man Fred at a track in West Memphis. Despite his impressive pedigree and a couple of promising races, he was sacked. We were so fortunate that the stars aligned in such a way that he came to live out his retirement with us ... ten joyful years.

Letting go of a beloved pet is never an easy decision, regardless of how much the evidence may support it. Thanks to Tammy, Fred made his transition peacefully from home in his own bed. The pet hospice service that she provides is an incredible blessing to the Greater Cincinnati area and made a difficult experience so much easier on us as a family.

Our other greyhound, Phoebe, stayed right by Fred's side throughout the process. Right before Tammy confirmed that he had passed, Phoebe left the room. Since then, she has been laying on Fred's bed. There is no mistake that she is in mourning. I think we all want and need our turn in the middle of Fred's bed.

Although we've had to keep our cat, Garrett, separated from the hounds because of his tendency to intimidate Fred, we've now given him complete freedom in the hope that he will be of support to Phoebe. He has risen to the occasion this morning and exceeded it. This is the closest that they've ever slept together. Garrett has been so gentle with and respectful of her. He even spent some time cleaning her ears which surprised her as well as us.

Animals have so much to teach us and for this I am so deeply grateful.

My commitment to wrapping 60 pendants in 60 days continues, but it may mean two pendants in one day as catching up is necessary. Thanks so much for your understanding.


Kim Lunay said...

You are incredible, Julie. Thank you for sharing this, it moved me greatly!

Mom said...

Julie, I was wondering how last night went for Phoebe. You are so right our fur babies are here to be our friends and to teach us if we keep our ears open and ready to receive their messages. I am so proud of you all. Freddie boy will always be with us and in our hearts.

~Tim said...

So sorry for your loss.