Two lovely Golden Retrievers on a beautiful Autumn day in 2013. Our Lucy on the left and our Ellie on the right, taking an enforced rest break from romping in the leaves. Both were the picture of health. In fact they had their annual exams a month before and the veterinarian pronounced them perfect. October 30 was a perfect day in DuPont State Forest.
The pedestrian bridge over Little River near the trail where the dogs were running. It was new then.
The wide and empty trail ahead.
Who could have predicted on this gorgeous Autumn day that our beloved Ellie would be dead in less than a fortnight? November 10th. It was on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. My husband had taken both girls out for a walk. They were both active and happy. When they got back to the house, Ellie abruptly collapsed at the top of the driveway. She would not or could not get up. My husband ran inside and we quickly put her in his SUV and drove to the emergency hospital, calling them on the way there.
When we got there the veterinarian told us immediately that she suspected a massive internal bleed from a hemangiosarcoma, a cancer of the blood vessel walls. It is usually on the spleen or lining of the heart. This cancer is more common in Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, and German Shepherds. Mean age is 9-12 years old. The first symptom is often a sudden collapse. Ellie definitely fit the profile.
They rushed her back to the operating room, but she died on the table. She had bled into the lining of her heart.
She was a lovely dog, but her looks were unimportant compared to her temperament. She was the very definition of loyalty. Quick to learn and eager to please.
The closest thing to a perfect dog that we will ever see.
She never wandered far, always stopping and looking back for us
Trying her best to look regal while holding her tennis balls.
She carried at least one ball and usually two most of the time.
Like all Goldens, she was an adorable puppy.
Ellie was the canine love of my life. We will have other dogs, but there will never again be a bond such as the one between Ellie and me. She understood my every mood. And I will miss her forever.
Today's quote is attributed to Dr. Seuss. It gives me a great deal of comfort.
Don't cry because it's over
Smile because it happened.
Our thoughts go out to our neighbors in western NC where the mountains are ablaze. The air is hazy here but none of the fires are sufficiently close to put us in danger at present. We remain very concerned because of the exceptional drought conditions (the category worse than extreme) throughout the mountains and no rain in sight. Rivers are carrying less than half their usual flow volume. The fallen leaves are very dry. The pine needles are brown and falling off, making for frightening tinder for a potential fire. Thousands of acres are burning and only one of the fires is more than 15% contained.
HAVE A WONDERFUL WEEKEND, EVERYONE
THIS IS OUR COUNTRY
WE WILL GET THROUGH IT
This is Veteran's Day here in the United States. We honor all of those who serve, now and in the past.
[You remember when I said last week I wanted the election to be over? No matter what the outcome? I LIED! It is so much worse than I feared. I'll never look at my fellow citizens in the same way again. Ever.]