Sunday, 4 July 2010
I never knew Cookie's death could make me so so sad. We've had many dogs before him but none had affected me this much. Maybe it was because I was the one who brought him home 7 years ago. It was my responsibility to give him a good life.
While he wasn't as privileged as Rusty, he lead a very happy life at the farm until he developed severe skin problems recently. When he moved into my apartment, he settled in quickly and found his favourite corner in the patio.
He was recovering nicely. He had a healthy appetite and was beginning to enjoy his daily walks. Suddenly, he started refusing food over the weekend. He didn't look like he was in any pain. His body felt a little warm but he was always warmer than Rusty, so I didn't think it was anything unusual.
Last night, I brought him out for his last walk, a short one. He wasn't very active. While he rested, I stroked his head and spoke to him softly. His eyes looked a little teary.
"Are you ok Cookie? We'll go to the vet first thing in the morning ok?"
I led him slowly to his bed and that was the last time I saw him alive.
When I brought him food at 7.30am this morning, I was happy to see him lying just outside our balcony door. I thought he was feeling better and had decided to crawl out of his cubby hole. But he didn't stir when I called out his name, I burst into sobs. My poor Cookie died while we were all asleep.
My neighbour Evelyn called me on the phone. "Is Cookie ok? He's not moving." It has become a habit for her to look out for Cookie from her balcony above.
I couldn't accept his death. He died under my care and I couldn't help feeling guilty. Was the chemical bath too toxic for him? Was he running a fever? I should have brought him to the hospital yesterday. Why didn't I see the signs earlier?
Last night I had borrowed Cookie's collar and leash to use on Bodhi. I was planning to buy a new set for Cookie today. It breaks my heart that this will never happen.
Then mum called to say Bodhi broke free from his leash this morning. He sprinted into the thick undergrowth by the reservoir and refused to come out. Two bad news in one morning! I had to deal with Cookie's stiff body first. The pet cremator was summoned over.
They were professional and efficient. While they were packing Cookie up, Rusty suddenly ran over and sniffed at his best friend for the last time.
He looked so sad and was reluctant to see Cookie go. I had to carry Rusty in my arms to comfort him.
After they were gone, I knew there was someone else I had to call - Dr Bryan who treated Cookie just weeks before. He had a soft spot for Cookie. He was so shocked and sad to receive my call. After describing Cookie's symptoms to him, he suspected that Cookie could have died from pneumonia.
I had to ask if Cookie died a painful death. He said, "He could have had difficulty breathing right at the very end..."
Rest in Peace Cookie. May you continue to run free in doggie heaven. A place that is free from mites, ticks and illness. We will miss you forever.