Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Saying good bye to a faithful friend.

The trip to Vancouver and back was simply AWESOME but the return home was shadowed by some bad news. Our beloved Mini Schnauzer, Obi Kenobi, has been sick for the past week. The visit to the vet and some medicines had made her better and when I arrived home on Thursday we thought she was on her way to recovery. Unfortunately, she suddenly deteriorated and crashed with kidney failure on Sunday night. On Monday morning we made the only humane decision we could. Our family decided to put her to rest.

Obi was the best family dog anyone could ever ask for. While fiercely protective, she never made a wrong move or threatened to bite anyone. But she let everyone know our family was under her protection with her loud bark and anyone trying to harm any of us would have to deal with her first. With children she was always gentle and eternally patient enduring a toddler's prodding and pushing with the stoic poise of a lioness, never complaining or showing any sign of displeasure.

Two years ago Obi suddenly came down with SARDS (Sudden Acquired Retinal Degeneration Syndrome). We've never heard of the disease but quickly became fully aware of its devastating effects. In the span of four weeks Obi became totally blind and was constantly prone to bouts of colitis with diarrhea, distended stomach and heavy drinking of water. In the following months she dealt well with her disease and quickly learned the commands for "down" (stepping down the stairs), "up", and "ah ah" (change direction). She was able to go off leash in a protected park and enjoy relative freedom. We could still play her favourite game of "Snakey".

Unfortunately, it would seem the symptoms of SARDS hid an underlying problem with kidneys, to which Schnauzers of her age are predisposed to. When she crashed on Sunday, her blood levels were so high, they indicated total kidney failure and even though we could probably rehydrate her with a hospital stay, it would only mean prolonging her suffering as her kidneys could not be fixed.

Last night we said good bye to our cherished and faithful friend and send her off to the Rainbow Bridge, to play with her pal Yoda. She is free of suffering now, and I hope to see her some day when it's my time to pass.

Farewell dear friend, rest well until we meet again. We love you and miss you...

P.S. I will report on the trip in a few days.