Jeremiah and I rushed to the animal hospital. Lola lay on a table, already anesthetized, with a breathing tube in, her loose tongue clamped out of the way. She was covered in a towel and some sort of surgical blanket thing into which they were pumping (I assume) warm air. The vet showed us all the bruising. She was so shocked, I worried she might start crying. Jeremiah and I sat with Lola for awhile. We knew what we needed to do but neither of us wanted to say it out loud. We scrubbed her head, the little brown goober marking right on top. I leaned down and nuzzled her ultra-soft ear so I could feel it against my cheek one last time. Then we gave the vet permission to put her down. She’s been cremated and we will scatter her ashes right in our yard, over her favorite sun spot, where our vegetable garden will be planted.
Right now, we are sad beyond the telling of it. When I came home yesterday, she wasn’t watching me from the window in the TV room, and she didn’t run to the door to greet me, or leap in the air when I walked in. There was no need to do my regular recon in search of destroyed objects we failed to secure during the morning’s puppy proofing. We miss our dog. I cannot begin to count the miles she and I have walked together. We could not go anywhere in the house without her being under foot. When I showered, I always had to convince her to move so I could open the shower door to get out. She used to wake me up in the morning by tapping me with a paw so I would let her climb into bed with us. When Rex made a break for it and got outside, she always let us know. I once watched her herd him back inside.
She guarded her babies so well we could not even bring her to the park when they went to play. If you sang Stevie Nicks to her – ‘it’s like the world we know, sings the song sounds like she’s singin’…’ when you got to the “oooo! Baby ooo! Baby oooo!’ part she would go nuts and leap up on you trying to get to the source of the “oooo!” She was terrified of thunderstorms. Her fear got so intense that more recently; she’d start to shake uncontrollably as soon as the barometer began to drop. She liked to chase flies and bees. We’d often find her staring intently, then jumping up and snapping at the air. The carpenter bees were the easiest to get.
Motor. Sarah, who adored Lola from the time she was an infant, doesn’t seem to get it at all. I’m kind of glad for that. The house is much too quiet without Lola. Even at night, I miss her quiet snoring. Jeremiah and I keep thinking we see her here and there – scratching at the kitchen door, peeking her head around a corner to check on us. She was our over-zealous sentinel and our constant companion. It used to be that when I was sad, Lola would comfort me. Now I wonder if maybe she wasn’t on to something, and when you really miss someone, you should chew up a piece of their furniture and barf on their living room rug.