my darling wiz...

last friday we helped wilson pass out of this life.  it was time and we were at peace with the decision knowing that it was the best thing for him.  somehow i convinced myself that all those things would make it easier.  somehow i convinced myself that it wasn’t tragic so i would miss him but i would be okay – i would survive.  somehow i convinced myself that i’m like a professional at dog loss at this point and i would be okay.  even though i’m a person who gets sad when i reach a book’s end because i’ll “miss” the characters i convinced myself i would be okay.  i fell for it lock, stock and barrel…i, folks, am a dumbass.

we had a dear friend in from out of town this weekend so that was a great distraction and then the beginning of the week we had a rare snow/ice storm and that was another great distraction.  and then wednesday hit and the distractions ran out and so did my ability to lull myself into believing i was okay.   the devastation and loss hit and it hit hard. 

wilson (aka the wiz, whopper, puddle, lil man) was an enormous presence in a very little body.  he wasn’t like most of the other rescues that have come through our lives – he knew he was awesome and he knew that we loved him…i don’t think he thought there was an alternative.  he was 12 lbs of spirit and love with just a little pinch of hate.

there’s so much to say about him:  how even though his immune-mediated disease took his sight it never changed him, how tough he was, how entertaining he was, how if i had a lap he was in it yet he bit me constantly, and how much of a true terrier he was.  to me the item of most importance though is how woven into the fabric of our life he was.  i don’t remember him not being here – i don’t remember a time without him.  that can be attributed to his diminutive size and loss of sight and needing to be constantly aware of where he was but i think it’s more an indication of the vastness of his spirit...the lil man was a fighter, a character and a total dream of a dog, warts and all.  

he was one of 17 dogs, he weighed less than half of the dog closest to him in size and he was blind but he didn’t take crap from anyone and he dished a whole lot of his own out…that was my dear wiz and he will never be forgotten. 



a few weeks ago we decided to foster another dog for snooty giggles, asprey beach.  she’s a 7-year-old french bulldog who had recently been through some traumatic changes and she pulled quite hard at my heart strings.  in probably the span of a month or so she was hit by a car and had a leg amputated, her owner died and then the family or friends dropped her rather unceremoniously at a shelter in kentucky.  fortunately snooty giggles came to her rescue and started her on her new life. 

we were "fostering" her basically knowing that if she was happy in a pack scenario and fit in well she would likely be staying as she certainly didn’t need any more changes in her life unless they were for her benefit.  a few days before the handoff was happening shawn (who runs snooty giggles) texted me saying “i don’t think she can hear.”  so let’s distill this down…she’s got 3 legs and she’s deaf…oh yeah she’s a colella.

basically i’ve cut to the chase so here’s the lady who shall hereto forward be known as mabel:


she takes the chaos here in stride and seems pretty nonplussed with everything.  she definitely seems dulled down by how life has hit her and it didn’t help that a few days after transitioning here she had to have surgery to repair a hernia...that blow pretty much negated any progress she had made here.  


we’re starting to see a glimmer in her eyes though and i can say for certain she’s going to show herself to be quite the character.  as of now her grunts, snorts and snuffles crack us up.   the one place where she always seems happy and really shines is on our daily walks and it's quite a delightful sight.  


it would seem i've inexplicably landed myself quite the midget any given moment i'm followed by 5 little weebles.

here's a few more shots of able mabel that i love:



the descent

about 6-8 weeks ago wilson seemed to plunge into complete confusion and old age overnight.  he was no longer able to get around the house on his own, when we called to him he clearly heard it but always moved in the opposite direction and he kept circling and running into walls.  because of his total blindness running into things and not always knowing where he is can be commonplace but this was extreme and very sudden.  wil spent many years on prednisone due to his immune mediated disease so my concern was he was in liver failure.  

surprisingly his blood work was perfect and that of a younger man.  with the absence of any symptoms other than the confusion and the perfect blood work our vet diagnosed dementia and prescribed several supplements.  after trying the supplements to no avail we were suddenly looking at a quality of life issue.  it was frighteningly looking like the wiz was not long for our world.  from the first minute we met him when he popped out of his carrier like a little champ, pneumonia and all, he’s been such a trooper with everything he’s been through that i really couldn’t stomach keeping him alive in the condition he was in

knowing that frankincense is helpful with brain function i figured it couldn’t hurt  to add some to his regimen.  would you believe that after two days wil started improving?  we’ve been giving him one drop twice a day for about 3-4 weeks now and darnit if he’s not totally back to normal…if not even better than that.  i am beyond grateful to have our wiz back to his amazing, pugilistic little self. 


dave and i are always looking to combine holistic treatments in combination with traditional medicine with both ourselves and our animals and this is just the latest proof that this is the correct path for us.  have you had similar experiences with eastern medicine?

and hey frankincense – they don’t call you the king of oils for nothing!