Friday, March 5, 2010

Goodbye Abbie



No tears....no tears.....Abbie is still around! The "goodbye" is just because tonight is my last night staying with her while her human parents' and sisters are in Vancouver, B.C. to catch some of the Olympic games.



Abbie is 14. That is getting old for a lab. I have been her dog sitter for almost 12 years. Usually I stay with her for anywhere from 2 nights to two weeks, probably 4-5 times a year.


Abbie is a special dog. I mean, everyone thinks their dog is special. Abbie is not my dog but I still think she's pretty special. She's kind of my God-dog, like having a God-child. I'm like her God-mother (you know something funny, I just retyped "God-Mother two times- I kept spelling it "Dog-Mother", isn't that weird? God is dog spelled backwards, too!)


Anyway, back to the special part. She's really smart, she just has a savvy way about her. She loves people, although she's not very fond of other dogs. She's sensitive and emotional. And protective.


When she was younger, I remember tossing her red Kong over and over as she sprinted across the yard to fetch it. My favorite thing was to make her sit and stay, then I'd throw it. She'd wait, posed like a statue, until I gave her the signal to go get it!


We use to take long walks. Now, Abbie limps. She had a cancerous tumor on her leg removed a few years back, but is doing fine now. Her black muzzle is gray with age, her deep brown eyes are now a bit cloudy, she has a shaved spot from recent blood work and tests on her liver (she came back with a clean bill of health.) She still has some assorted squishy non-cancerous lumps.


Actually, Abbie is on some new medication and seems almost a few years younger than the last time I stayed with her! She is moving a little better, has more pep in her step on our short walks- just down the street and around the corner and back. She is eating her breakfast and dinner better. She just seems happier.


Here is a little video I took of Abbie the other night in the kitchen as I was fixin my dinner and she was begging. I was talking to her like I typically talk to dogs, like they understand English. Sorry, I know it's kind of silly!


Abbie from Pony Girl on Vimeo.




I always get sad when my time dog sitting Abbie ends. I give her a hug and a pat before I close and lock the door. What if something happens in the next couple of months before I see her again? What if that is the last time I see her? I dread the day her owners call me with bad news about Abbie.


For now, I enjoy every moment being a pseudo dog owner, enjoying her company and taking great care of her.


She's my God-dog, and I wouldn't do anything less.

30 comments:

  1. Abby looks like a wonderful girl! I hope you have many more visits with her!

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  2. Hey girlie, I got 2 dogs and 3 cats you can some house sit for! I might even make up a reason to get away if you volunteer! I agree, 14 is a ripe old age for a labby. Do you know what med she's on? I'm betting Deramaxx, its like a miracle drug for aging and arthritic dogs. Looks like she had an IV catheter place too, unless they draw blood from her leg! Sorry, the vet tech in me is coming out. Beautiful photos. They will be priceless to her owners when she really is gone.

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  3. what an awesome post about a beautiful dog...tony and i had becky who was a black lab, who, at 15 crossed the rainbow bridge a couple of years ago....thank you for the post my friend......

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  4. {Mama H}~ Close!.....? She's on Denamarin (S-Adenosylmethionine and Silybin A+B) Whats that? :)
    For some reason, black dogs are so hard to photograph! Their features don't stand out much. I've had better luck shooting her in black and white.

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  5. This is a beautiful post cousin. Abbie is sooo sweet!! Makes me really miss my Chance. I wish I had a wonderful dog sitter like you when we had him. Your pictures are wonderful.

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  6. Abbie is so cute. I love her gray muzzle, reminds me of Keysha in a way, since she was part lab.
    I am glad you have enjoyed dog sitting, and I bet Abbie is glad to have you there too!

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  7. Oh she is SO cute!! I love her gray muzzle!!!! You are a great Dog/God-Mother LOL!!!

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  8. ps~ I LOVE her video!! Especially when she drools LOL!! She is the cutest thing!

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  9. I love the photos and video of Abby. I had a black Lab, Jet (Jetty the petty girl) for 10 years. She was the best... same eyebrow movement of all Labs - when they listen to you they roll their eyes and eyebrows around - so expressive like Abby in the video. She always had non-cancerous tumors and then, she had a cancerous one in her liver. She is buried on our farm under a lilac bush. I petsit other people's dogs now, and I feel like I am their Godmothers too! Thanks for sharing Abby-girl's story. She is adorable.

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  10. She looks like a sweetheart! My dog came running when you said the "C" word in your video (cookie) and the drooling was funny! Is she afraid of the camera? It was funny how she was looking every where else trying to avoid it then when you had the cookies you had her full attention :)

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  11. It's hard to watch them get old. Chula and Cindi are getting up there. Since both were rescues, we don't know how old they really are, but they are slowing down.

    Abbie looks like a sweet girl, and she's obviously surrounded with love.

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  12. Awww, she's cute when her eyes brighten and her ears perk up for the cookie...and she drools! So cute!
    What a sweetie Abbie is. She and her family are truly blessed to have you be her God/Dog Mother :)

    ~Lisa

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  13. Oh isn't she sweet! She looks a lot like our black lab Abby. Our Abby is only 7 and hasn't even started to slow down yet but I know that day is coming as her muzzle gets more gray every day. You are good to be so sweet to her...no wonder she loves you so much!

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  14. What a sweet wise old girl! I love that look dogs give when you ask them if they want a treat. I think they all do it. That little head tilt with the ear thing - it melts my heart, lol! My favorite part was her drooling in anticipation...so cute!

    It's sad how little time we have with our pets, I hope Abbie has many good years left in her :).

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  15. {Nikki}~ I say she's afraid of the camera, I don't know if she really is. But it seems like it, whenever I point it at her, she hides her head or her eyes. She's funny!

    {Jennybean}~ I love the head tilt, too! My parents' beagle used to to do that, it was so irresistible! I think Abbie has a few good years left, she just got a clean bill of health!

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  16. Oh gosh, that's sweet. She reminds me of my old lady, Elsa. When dogs are with us that long they become almost humanish--their time is so short though, I sure wished they lived at least as long as horses. You're a good god-mother.

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  17. I love that she has a Livestrong band on her bandanna! Adorable! I love dogs, they are amazing creatures and I really wish I could have one again. For now I have a "flex dog". She's our upstairs neighbors dog and she comes done every morning to get her loving and a treat. She somehow has figured out how to open up a locked door. No one can figure it out, but she will let herself in if I don't come fast enough to get her. We love her! I've had lots of dogs in my life, all were special! I hope that Abbie's family gets to spend a lot more time with her! Beautiful photos!

    www.wildponybeast.blogspot.com

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  18. She is such a beautiful girl. I know how much you love and enjoy all the babies you sit for.

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  19. That's really nice of you to dog-sit. It's really hard to find someone dependable that loves your pet as much as you do, so that is one lucky God-Dog I'd say!

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  20. You said no tears. You lied.

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  21. Such a beauty. I love the gray on her muzzle. It reminds me of my Annie. Thank you for sharing such beautiful shots of her.

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  22. Oh i just love her! Such a sweet wise lab dog. The time we have with them is so short, its just so unfair.

    I don't think talkin to them is weird at all - they say most dogs have the intelligence of a 3-5 year old human, and can understand english as such. So I talk to mine all the time.

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  23. Sweet old gal... My old guy will be 14 in september and has much the same look as Abbie. The cloudy eyes, gray face, and hobble as he walks. Glad you got to enjoy another time taking care of her.

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  24. I love your blog! I am brand new to blogging,however a long time writer.
    Finally found the courage to "cowgirl up" and turn my musings public.
    Your blog has provided inspiration and I thank you.
    Please visit me at mysticequus.blogspot.com
    Blessings,
    Terri Baker

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  25. You brought me to tears with your story of Abby. It's not silly to talk to our animals. dogs espeically understand everything. I have talked to my pets forever. My golden rosie is the most intelligent dog I've had. She is my confidant, my go to person. She is my only child left at home. Abby is a wonderful dog and she is so lucky to have you. When the day comes, it will be hard but just know that she loves you.

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  26. I agree with your comment on how hard it is to photograph a black animal. Maybe I'll try black and white. Your photos turned out great!

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  27. Her graying muzzle reminds me of the solid black rottie we used to have. Everyone thought she was part lab but she was indeed a purebred but non-registerable because she was all black.

    Just the look on your Abbie's sweet face tells me what a great dog she is. I can understand why you miss her when you're not dog sitting.

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