02 Nov

November 4, 2016

This is the blog entry I've been eluding for over three weeks... The one I somehow, naïvely thought I'd never have to write. Mofli (aka Mr. Moff) didn't make it...

He was put to sleep on the evening of October 13, when it became clear that, no matter what the test results showed, there was to be no recovery. He had refused food for the past 24 hours and did nothing but sleep. 

It was on the previous evening when I knew I had lost him; he was in another world, albeit clearly a peaceful one. I gave him lots of massages throughout those last hours, simply because he has always loved them and I believe the sense of touch is the last to go.

The above is one of his last photos, when he opened his eyes and looked at me...

He had been showing increasing weakness in his legs - had difficulty managing the steps and walked more slowly - but I was told this was normal following surgery and that he should be taken for short, easy walks to regain mobility.  But when, one evening several weeks later,  I discovered his right hind leg was swollen, I suspected something more sinister. 

The vet said the swelling was not due to arthrosis, as she had at first thought from my description, and that the prognosis for this type of swelling was not good; she also discovered fluid retention in his abomen and removed a considerable amount of liquid from it. She took blood for a lab test and gave him symptomatic treatment, including two shots I had to give him myself the following day (it being a bank holiday). The paleness of his gums had suggested he had anaemia, but the blood test results revealed he didn't; simply, his heart was no longer capable of pumping blood around his body in any efficient manner. Moments before he was euthanized, his heart  - instead of a normal 'thump-thump' - sounded like 'water slushing around in the bottom of a bucket'. 

Some dogs have known health issues and a short life expectancy, but against the odds manage to live full and happy lives to a good old age; some, although well loved and healthy, die young from unexpected illness or tragedy; others - like Mofli - never know an illness in their entire long lives...  Until some apparently simple ailment strikes, and you see them irrevocably going downhill in spite of all the efforts and (probably unreasonable) expectations. At 15 years and 3 months, put it down to old age, I guess. It certainly could have been worse; his final hours, and days, were totally peaceful. I have known many owners whose dogs' lives have ended in tragic, traumatic circumstances, so perhaps this was, in its own way, a blessing...

I adopted Mofli as a terrified, paranoid four-month-old from SOS Rescue Centre (Mijas, Spain) on October 30, 2001. He was considered 'unadoptable'...

I'll be forever grateful to Mofli for all the insight and experience he provided which, hopefully, have enabled me to help many other dogs.

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