Saturday, February 9, 2013

Beloved Joey - December 23, 2000 - February 7, 2013

Dad's Little Hero

It's with great reluctance, sadness, and pain, that we report that we laid our beloved 12-year-old Dachshund 'Joey' to rest on Thursday.  My boy.  My sweet, wonderful, handsome, tail-wagging, perfect little spotted boy. Joey was your Long and Short of it All host for nearly 6 years, along with his littermate sister, sweet Miss 'Maggie,' who passed away on September 13, 2011.  He loved me more than anything else in the world, to the point where it was actually a little strange - eyes on my eyes, always watching my every single move, doing whatever was the right thing to do without ever being asked to do so, and so, so brave and stoic to the very end. I loved him just as much as he loved me. 
Something has been up with Joey for the last several weeks.  He was losing weight even though he was still eating the same. He was refusing a little jump over a 1/2 inch high piece of wood through the little door in the doggy gate, and refusing stairs.  I took him to the vet to examine his back, but there were no apparent issues.  We ran a series of tests, including a new one which looks at the overall stress of his heart, as sometimes the heart works so hard that it can cause muscle wastage.  This test came back as "medium," and we know Joey does have a murmur, but doesn't exhibit any signs such as coughing after exercise.  X-rays showed the heart was more enlarged than last fall, but there was no fluid build-up we could see. 
On Tuesday, I came home from work, and there was that cough.  It was very bad, and Joey seemed in some distress when breathing, as his abdomen would reflex when he would take a breath.  He was hungry for dinner though, so I decided to take him to the vet the next day.  He continued to cough all night long, and couldn't get comfortable in the big bed.  He couldn't lay on either side, but was able to lay on his stomach and find some rest.  I didn't sleep at all that night, but watched him closely, crying, and stroked and hugged him tight, as I suspected in the back of my mind that this could be it for Joey.
My veterinarian is closed on Wednesdays, but he is such a wonderful and caring person that he gave me his cell phone if I ever needed him.  I needed him that day.  He met me in the office and didn't have any techs with him, so I gowned up in the lead vest to help hold Joey in various positions while he took x-rays.  He ran a series of blood tests and other tests for over an hour, but nothing was jumping out at him.
And so, it was off to the veterinary referral center.  Cardiologists and radiologists finally determined that he had either a cyst or clot on the left side of his heart.  This was causing the right side of his heart to become extremely enlarged, as it was over-compensating, and the lungs and liver to become sluggish.  It was decided that they would treat it as a clot, and he would hopefully have some improvement after a day's worth of treatment and stay in an oxygen tent.  I went with a friend to visit him that night, and he did not seem much better.  I got the call in the morning from his internist that he had not improved over night, and they could run more tests if they took him to another specialty center, but his prospects were not good.  I opted to not perform any more tests.  It was time.  Lord knows he had been through enough in his life.  I called my good friend, and we headed to the center for his euthanization. 
Throughout all of this, surprisingly, Joey didn't lose his appetite.  That's what made this even harder, as usually dogs will lose their appetite when they are quite ill.  Must be the Dachshund in him.  I stopped at Burger King on the way and picked him up a Whopper with cheese, plain, and a small fry.  This would be his last meal.
We spent about an hour with him before the procedure.  Unfortunately he had an oxygen tube stapled down the front of his head and into his nose, and this was bothering him.  But he was able to work around it to gladly eat up whatever we offered him of the Whopper and fries.  We had some good quality time and talked with him about all the things that he loved.  He got lots of kisses, hugs, and strokes.  Joey continued to struggle to breathe when the doctor and the technician came in the room and asked us if it was time.  It was.
As he lay in my lap, his most favorite place on the planet, looking into the eyes of one of my dearest friends, the good doctor began to push in the propofol to relieve him of his suffering. Tired as he was, and struggling to breathe, he sat up from his laying position, as if to say "No, I can't go, No, I have to take care of my Dad and my little brother Rowdy. No, I am Joey, I am Dachshund, and I won't leave this world lying down." We soothed him with sweet words and caresses to relax, and in just three seconds as the drug began to take effect, he cradled his warm little head into my hand and rested peacefully, knowing that everything is gonna be alright. Faithful and true to the last beat of his loving heart.  Good Gosh I'll miss you Joey.
Thank you to all of Joey's friends here for your love and support over the years - I know a lot of folks here are gonna miss him too. And I know that his littermate sister Maggie was the first to greet him on the other side.
In the sky above Chicago, the world headquarters of The Long and Short of it All

Thank you to our dear friend Liz Kearley, who made this amazing image of Joey and Maggie, Together Again. They truly are. I can't wait til the day I can snuggle with them once more. 

I Am Weary (Let Me Rest) 
by The Cox Family

Kiss me mother kiss your darlin'
Lay my head upon your breast
Throw your loving arms around me
I am weary let me rest

Seems the light is swiftly fading
Brighter scenes they do now show
I am standing by the river
Angels wait to take me home

Kiss me mother kiss your darlin'
See the pain upon my brow
While I'll soon be with the angels
Fate has doomed my future now

Through the years you've always loved me
And my life you've tried to save
But now I shall slumber sweetly
In a deep and lonely grave

Kiss me mother kiss your darlin'
Lay my head upon your breast
Throw your loving arms around me
I am weary let me rest
I am weary let me rest

Monday, February 4, 2013

Dachshund and Robot Blood Feud

We can't think of a better way to kick-start your week than with this exciting video sent in by Derek Prowse.  He writes:

Dear Joey and Rowdy,

Thrill! As my dachshund Tater and the Roomba continue to battle day in and day out.. Both are equally single-minded in the performance of their duties, be it guardianship or vacuuming. WHO will win the prized dominion of the dining room carpet?? WHEN will the fighting stop?? WHY did I tape a video camera to the vacuum cleaner?

Celebrity Dachshund Watch: Ashley Olsen

We spied Mary-Kate Olsen walking what appears to be the same Dachshund back in July of 2011, now it must be Ashley's turn.  Via Celebrity Gossip:

Taking time out of busy schedule to give her pup some exercise, Ashley Olsen walked around the West Village in New York City on Saturday (February 2). The 26-year-old mogul had her hands full in a black overcoat, multicolored scarf, and black pants as she carried a couple of handbags, her coffee, and her little dachshund. Giving his stubby legs a break, she carried the pooch in his knit sweater for awhile.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Dachshund Relaxation: Sunday Morning

We're hoping that your Sunday Morning is just as lazy as Tia and Teaka's, seen here in a new video by vimeoer Tamara C.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Walking The Dog

It's Friday and it's time to sing!  Thanks to Turnout Pete for sending in the link of his pretty little red longhair 'Loekie' out on a stroll on the streets in Belgium. 

Dachshund Theory

Fan of The Big Bang Theory?  We're fans too!  Thanks to an Anonymous Dachshundist for sending this in.  It's making the rounds on facebook, but no one seems to have credited it back to its origin over at Captain Leisure - T-shirts, hoodies, and other super stuff. 

And there's more to explore while you're there.
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