We had to put our dog down this morning. He was in acute liver failure and hadn't eaten in about 4 days. He couldn't get up and down anymore so we had to pick him up to get his feet under him. It was clearly time. It just breaks my heart.
Cash was 10 years old. I bought him from a breeder in Tulsa, OK. We were up there for a horse show, Peggy and I, and I kept passing by this cage full of puppies. I finally decided I had to have the black tri-colored one. We took him back to our hotel room the last night in Tulsa and gave him a bath. He was so filthy with dust and dirt in the horse arena that he turned the bath water to mud. We made a run to the store before we got on the road to pick up food and a crate and some toys. I hadn't mentioned to my husband I was bringing home a puppy. We had lost our previous dog sometime before and it seemed time to me. I wanted to step out of the truck at home and put this wonderful little fuzzy and now completely clean puppy in Ron's arms. It didn't work out quite like that. I stepped out of the truck and Ron said "So where is the puppy?" Turns out the breeder was afraid she hadn't given me the correct birthdate and had called my house. So no big surprise but Ron loved the puppy so it was all great.
I think Cash was a much better single dog than part of a pack. We had a period of time when my daughter was living at home with her Boxer named Bosley and we picked up a stray dog that had been dropped off on our street. Three dogs is a pack and it's a much different dynamic. Cash was an only dog when we moved out here and for the past seven years he has been king of the hill. He always wanted to come with me when I fed the livestock or when we were working in the dye shed. He always found a comfortable spot to lie down in the studio and would happily keep me company no matter what time of day or night. He didn't eat well when I was out of town and always guarded the house when Ron was out of town.
I took Cash to the vet a couple of weeks ago because his back legs didn't seem to be working properly. They would slide out from under him when he ran around a corner in the house on our hard wood floors. He didn't have that problem outside but clearly something was wrong. The vet did x-rays and determined Cash had a small offset in his spinal column right where the nerves going to his back legs came through. It wasn't fixable but it wasn't serious either. However, what the vet found and what I hadn't noticed what that Cash was jaundiced. Jaundice usually indicates the liver isn't working properly and the byproducts that the liver should be filtering out turn your eyes and skin a pale yellow. It was a fast descent after that. More liver related symptoms appeared until we had to do what was best of Cash and let him go. Yes, it breaks my heart.