Tuesday, August 19, 2008
The flesh and blood time machine that Jake's canine soul has inhabited during this incarnation moves at a much quicker pace than my homo sapien time machine.
It's so bizarre to think of him, not that long ago by my standards - a dozen years or so - as a fiery, fierce and gorgeous puppy, playing hard, running hard, barking his ass off at every little thing. It was almost impossible to wear him out. Even as recently as three or four years ago, he was still on the prowl whenever and wherever, tail held high.
About a year ago he began cutting our daily walks short. He would just stop at Unity Church and demand to go back home. I pronounced him "geezer" at that point.
These days he doesn't want to walk at all, ever. I have to push him out the door. Maybe he's not seeing that well anymore, because being outside scares him, especially when he first walks out the door. If I push and insist, he will finally relent and walk with me, and I always say I told you so when he enjoys himself. He's saggy and bumpy, his tail hangs low, and he squats instead of lifting a leg these days.
This is a bittersweet time. Every day I lavish him with love, as if I'll never see him again. I'm extra mindful, extra gentle when giving him his geriatric doggie massage. He's taking an aspirin every day for his arthritis, marshmallow root and Golden Seal for his dodgy stomach, condroitin for his achy joints, Rescue Remedy for his nervousness.
Of course there's no herb or treatment can cure him of old age. But I love tending him. Taking care of Jake here in his last days is hugely emotional, and extremely good. I love my dog.