Photo Comments (2)Sex: Male
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Leave a bone for Fozzy, always in my heart
Dogster stats for Fozzy, always in my heart
8 times 209
Fozzwald T. Bear, Choppers, Fozzle Tee
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October 5th 1999
Meeting new people and being fussed over. Smelling new smells. These days, he likes to go somewhere new where there are likely to be lots of people and just sit and watch. Take a pet and a kiss now and then.
Fozzy is ~*sure*~ that his sister, Honey, gets more chewies than he does.
Squishy, squeaky tennis balls. His frizzle-bee
Fozzy eats pretty good. He likes a change in diet, but fats and proteins are good for cancer, so prolly rolls with BUTTER are his favorite right now. He gets pork roast, steak, chicken, a whole turkey for Thanksgiving (along with some carbs and vitamins).
He likes to change up. But he'd take a nature walk over a city sidewalk anytime.
Fozzy thinks "SIT" means that mom pushes his butt to the ground, so it's kind of hard to say. His best SKILL is an ability to communicate by using his eyes and other signals.
I looked at about seven different litters in southwest Michigan searching for Fozzy. I wanted the biggest and the blondest golden I could find. And that's just what I got. Fozzy weighs 104 today, and that's pretty slim for him. He's been up to 120 in the past. And he's plenty blond enough for me. A bonus was his curly ears and crooked front teeth. People who show goldens see those characteristics and busily point out Fozzy's "flaws." I look at his golden curlies and his little crooked teeth and see them as precious, endearing qualities that make him even more adorable to me.
My second husband (I'll call him Mistake No. 2) and I brought Fozzy and a little chocolate lab puppy, whom we "creatively" named Hershey, home just before Christmas 1999. Fozzy and Hershey were SO best friends. Fozzy had to pay a price for his big size. He developed arthritis at age six, but even as a tiny pup, Hershey ran circles around him. They were crate trained together in the same crate, then when they got a little bigger, we put two crates right next to each other.
Fozzy and Hershey grew up in rural Michigan and got several daily nature walks. They were well socialized because all the neighborhood dogs took to joining us on our walks. Michigan is full of lakes and they learned to swim at a very young age. Hershey swam first (Hershey did everything first). Poor little Fozzy wanted to swim so bad, he'd stand at the edge of the water, whimpering, and avidly watch Hershey paddle around. Finally Fozzy couldn't stand it anymore, but he picked the worst possible place to (literally) dive in.
We were at a fish hatchery, and water levels were low. Tons of fish were swimming around. Hershey gingerly picked his way down the hill and slipped into the water. Fozzy watched him paddle about for a bit, then you could just SEE him get fed up. Little Fozzy gathered all the courage he could muster, and LEAPED into the pond, splashing fish in every direction when he made his big belly flop entrance into the pond.
But, he took to swimming literally like a duck to water, and swimming is Fozzy's favorite activity to this day. He still prefers his original faded pink Frizzle-bee (cloth frisbee) and all you have to say is, "Who wants to go swim-bling? Who wants this Frizzle-bee?" and that gets a huge smile and a big huff of pleasure every time. =)
Fozzy and Hershey were lucky pups, because mom and Mistake No. 2 liked to camp every chance they got. Every long weekend or for a week's vacation, we headed north to the Upper Peninsula -- to Paradise and the wild shores of Lake Superior. Hershey had to be leashed occasionally, he had a tendency to be a tad naughty, but Fozzy never needed a lead.
Years later, a great dog trainer and hydrotherapy instructor who I had had many debates with about the dangers of not leashing Fozzy finally watched us walk the busy streets of Salem, OR, -- Fozzy free as a bird. When we approached a curb, Fozzy would look up at me and follow my lead. I'd hold up a hand when it was safe to cross and he'd heel perfectly all the way across. But he was free to stop and sniff whatever he liked, and set his own pace. After a while, my friend the dog trainer said, "Well, he *is* leashed. He's just on an INVISIBLE lead." =)
Fozzy grew up hiking in some beautiful places, sometimes where trails had to be forged. We would lift the dogs up over rocks when we were following streams to waterfalls that were unreachable by any trail. Once I was scouting down by the river to see if we could get through, and the dogs were far up a hill with Mistake No. 2. Fozzy missed his Mozzy, and decided to head straight down the hill. The dogs had absolutely no fear -- EVER -- and would plunge over any embankment to get to the water no matter how steep it was. We had to rescue them more than a few times.
This time, however, the hill was shale. Loose shale. Fozzy started to slide and began quickly picking up speed, a big goofy grin on his face the whole time. I was standing on a rock ledge about three feet wide at the bottom of the hill, next to the river -- we can call them raging rapids due to the waterfall a short distance downstream -- watching my beloved doggie hurtling down toward certain death. I would *have* to catch him. And I did.
Of course Fozzy had no idea what a close call he'd just had, and did one of those butt wigglin, tail waggin' "WOW I'M SO GLAD TO SEE YOU!!!" happy dances while I recovered from a near heart attack.
I think that was the last time we took a risk like that, and I realized that these guys weren't capable of estimating danger. They're about like your average 2- or 3-year-old, and as his parent, it was up to me to protect him.
I didn't find it hard to do. Over the years I've stepped in between Fozzy and aggressive dogs more times than I can count. He automatically moves behind me if he sees something before I do. I've jumped into dog fights and punched out pit bulls that were latched onto his throat while Fozzy laid belly-up and whimper-yelping like he was dying (there were no puncture wounds even, but it was right on a hot spot, so I'm sure it hurt!).
Sadly for little Fozzy (and I use the term "little" loosely), Mistake No. 2 decided that I was his Mistake No. 1, and he disappeared one night when I was out and he was supposed to be with the dogs. He took Hershey with him, and Fozzy and I never saw Hershey again. =[ He emptied our bank account and took my truck, too, but as far as I was concerned, he was welcome to them had he just left the dog.
Fozzy developed separation anxiety something fierce, and I didn't know that dogs should have pals. I didn't get another dog for years. But I did take Fozzy everywhere I went. We moved to Oregon and I met my current partner, Allen, in 2002. I was able to bring Fozzy to work with us, and he was fussed over in fine fashion. =)
The Fozz was diagnosed with arthritis when he was six, though. His doctor told me he'd be lucky to make it to 10-years-0ld (remember that prediction, it comes into play later). Fozzy had a bad reaction to glucosamine, so he went on adequan -- similar to glucosamine, but larger molecules and it's primarily used on race horses. After a lot of adjustment, we found that Fozzy needed his injection weekly, or he'd start limping around like Lurch.
He took MSM and previcox for pain. I took him to hydrotherapy for swimming every week in the winter, when he couldn't swim in the rivers. He suffered through acupuncture once a month. He got three daily walks to keep his muscles toned. When he was 8, it got to be too much for him to spend all day at work with us, so we brought a rescue golden home to keep him company. I'd bring him in half days, either taking him home or picking him up at lunch.
This October 5, Fozzy's 10th birthday, we celebrated big time, because Fozzy was doing great. He was in fine shape and the vets were very pleased with his condition.
Murphy's Law comes into play in every story, and this one is no exception. Five days after Fozzle Tee turned 10, he had some kind of fit. We rushed him to the vet, and Fozzy held on for three hours while they poked, prodded, x-rayed and ultrasounded him. They gave him an injection of morphine, so I don't think he was in too much pain, but he was very anemic and very cold.
My little guy was diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma, a very aggressive blood vessel cancer that builds abnormal cells and tumors. It's carried through the blood stream to all the major organs, and the prognosis is grim. Fozzy had a tumor on his heart which had burst, filling the pericardium with blood. His heart was unable to pump blood to his body, and most dogs die within minutes in situations like that.
The vets recommended we put him down. They told us they could tap the sac around his heart to drain the blood, but that we could expect him to live 24 hours to two weeks tops.
Thinking of the vet's prediction that he MIGHT make it to 10 with his arthritis, I said, "Well, he's surprised people before. Let's go for it." Fozzy did surprise everyone (except his Mozzy!) by living nearly four months after that, and his life was a happy, quality one until the very end, and, let me assure you, he was well fed and spoiled rotten in every possible way.
A couple of weeks before the end, Fozzy collapsed again, and we evenutally discovered the cancer had spread to his bone marrow and lungs, and Dog knows where else.
I'll add here that he takes an Eastern Medicine herbal drug called Yunnan BaiYao, that the VietCong used in the Vietnam War on their wounded soldiers. It's supposed to stop internal bleeding. I've come across another wonderful lady on Facebook whose German shepherd with hemangiosarcoma and a heart tumor lasted an extra four months or so on the Yunnan, too.
The morning of Jan. 19, Fozzy woke up rarin' to go. I was so excited to see him so chipper I grabbed the video camera and posted something on Facebook about how I had such good news about the Fozz. But Fozzy wasn't better. He was just using every last little bit of energy and love, every last ounce of adrenaline he could muster to enjoy every last minute of his life.
That afternoon, Fozzy went to find his dad and led him outside. He fell a couple of times before dad could catch up to him. Fozzy collapsed on the lawn in a bit of sunlight and never moved again. We carried him inside and called the vet, who came and put him down that evening.
I'm not going to tell you about Fozzy's character in words. Pictures are worth a thousand words. Look at his face. Look at the movement of his tail. Look at his smile. Look at his curly ears and crooked teeth, and please don't see them as flaws. If you look closely, you'll see exactly what kind of dog Fozzy is.
I just need a li'l lovin' and 'uggin'
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|January 11th 2010
||More than 4 years!
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