September 16th 2006 4:09 pm
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Your mother was the cutest little puppy I had ever seen. She was a shiny, ball of black sweetness. When she went into heat, we were told to not allow her out of the house. Well we were kids and you know accidents happen. She apparently mated with our black standard poodle Hairy and our neighbor's standard American Eskimo. I can't remember his name. Suzie gave birth to 5 little puppies on the hottest day of the year in the same summer we celebrated our nation's bicentennial. Of those 5 puppies, you were the only white puppy, the only male and the only American Eskimo mixed with whatever Suzie was. She looked like you, minus the distinct plume of the Spitz tail. The other puppies were all solid black like Hairy and Suzie and all had curly or wavy fur. Their names were Fifi, Muffy, Taffy, Satin and then there was Snowball. Suzie seemed to do well caring for her pups and everyone seemed to be healthy, but one day we came home to find her outside the house, lying under a bush, swollen and barely breathing. She died later that night and we never knew why. My mom fed the entire litter with an eye dropper around the clock for the next weeks until you were healthy enough to eat on your own. We thought you all would make it, until all the dogs in the neighborhood started becoming ill. In those days, there was barely food for the humans and parvo (as we now realize it to have been) is very hard for puppies to survive. It is particularly difficult for puppies who have not had the benefit of receiving antibodies from their mom. You were the sole survivor my friend. And you were my special friend.
Snowball, you were my friend through some of my darkest days. You are what kept me going so many times. As a teenager, we often feel as if we haven't a friend in the world, but I always had you. We moved a lot and I was always the new kid. Life was tough, but I could always count on coming home to you. You never failed to greet me in your special way and run throughout the entire house like a maniac, well into your later years. If I was sleeping, you would not allow anyone to come into the room. If I was sick, you would not leave my side to eat, drink or go potty. I took you everywhere with me. We went on walks and later on car rides. When I got married, you rebelled against your new daddy. You peed in his shoes to show your dissatisfaction every time you found them outside of the closet. I thought you two would cause me a nervous breakdown before you finally became friends.
Later as you aged, you played your tricks up until the very end. You were such a wonderful dog. You were a little gentleman. You never barked unless someone was in your yard or at the door. Someone just on the sidewalk or outside in general didn't count. Many times, it was as if they didn't even exist in your world. By the time we brought Preshus home, you were 12 and had arthritis. There was no way you could keep up with her, but you played with her just the same. Instead of chasing her to get the toy, you would run to the window and bark as if someone/something was there. When she ran to the window to check it out; you ran back and snatched the toy. It was amazing years after you were gone to watch her play this same trick on Terra. It was as if you lived on by default. You patiently taught her the rules and kept her out of trouble before you left us.
When you were diagnosed with cancer, it had to be the darkest day I had ever known. You had surgery, but were too old and your heart too weak to undergo full anesthesia. The cancer appeared out of no where and was very aggressive. It was already very invasive and there was no way they could get it all with a local. They probably couldn't have even with full anesthesia in retrospect. When you came home from the hospital, I slept on the floor with you for the first couple of nights. I realized how difficult the surgery had been on you and knew then that I would not put you through that again. You managed to live for almost another year, before the tumor returned and grew to the point of rupturing. It was difficult to make that decision for you, because you had not given up on life. While I had the vet on the phone, you were stealing the toy from Preshus that one last time. She never had the upper paw on you!! I know you would have bled to death and it was too cruel for someone who had been such a devoted friend to me. Your death left such a hole in my life. "They" say these things get easier, but I still miss you immensely and the pain is still so intense and unbearable that it takes my breath away. You were my first dog and you will always hold that very special place in my heart.
Until we meet again..............
I love you Snowball
This is a special Tail of Devotion
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September 16th 2006 4:55 am
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A True Friend
A friend will listen when you want to talk;
will sit with you, or take a walk;
offers no advice, unless you ask;
will even help you finish your task.
A friend doesn't criticize or make you mad.
But will lift your spirits when you are feeling sad.
My friend has always been there for me.
So loving, patient and trusting you see.
For fourteen years I was blessed with this friend.
He was always devoted and loving me until the very end.
He told me not to worry for he would never grow old.
He will spend his days where it's never cold.
Far up in Heaven, he will lie on the grass;
drink crystal water from the sea of glass.
He will wait for me by the gates of pearl;
then we will stroll through the meadow when I, too, leave this world.
There we will be reunited, my friend and me;
and our love will continue throughout eternity.
(c) Copyright - This poem was written by Snowball's grandmother as a gift for his mother and may not be copied or republished without the written permission of the author.
See all diary entries for Snowball (7/24/1976-6/4/1990)|