tears have been shed and I guarantee there will be many more tears shed. On July 27th we said goodbye to my beloved greyhound. That day will forever be a bittersweet day as that was also the day 4 years prior we signed Doogie's adoption papers and brought him home.
To back up in the story of our life a little bit, on September 25, 2004 we adopted a very sick little beagle mix. She was to be mine. I wanted her and cowboy said okay despite how horrible she looked. A funny thing happened though, as much as we said Crystal was mine, she had other plans. From the day she came home she was cowboy's best friend and his lap dog despite being over 30lbs. Now cowboy is not a small man by any means at 6'5" tall or so depending if that's with or without cowboy boots. So Crystal has always been the perfect size to curl up on his chest on top of him on the couch. If I get up before cowboy, she immediately gets in my spot in the bed and continues to sleep until he gets up.
Skip forward to 2006. While cowboy was working a booth at the county fair he called me to tell me he had found a big dog for himself. Still claiming that Crystal was mine he still wanted a big dog to match his size. I looked at photos online and I said okay to this big dark brindle boy without seeing him. As soon as cowboy brought Doogie home, I spent most of the next few days with him getting him settled into, trying to get a routine going.
Now it wasn't always a match made in heaven. He escaped from the bottom of his crate and tore down our mini blinds in our bedroom. He broke out a hole in the side of his crate and chewed a huge hole in our lovely pillow top mattress. He pulled our bedspread and sheets into the crate and chewed holes in them. Okay, we won't put his crate near anything then. How about the middle of the living room where the crate didn't touch any furniture? He processed to break a bigger hole in the side of the crate and somehow got a hold of our couch, pulled it so it was touching the crate and chewed half of it up. So many of these acts remain a mystery at how he actually accomplished them. I would have loved to have had hidden cameras! Doogie started going to work with me for half the day and slowly he settled in at home, without a crate. He had free range of our bedroom and kitchen. There were many many times cowboy wanted to take him back but I said NO. Doogie was MINE! And that love grew stronger and stronger between us with each passing day until we overcame his "issues" of being home alone. He was such a good boy and he walked on a leash like a dream! Everyone that met him loved him. He persuaded many a non-dog people with those big dark eyes and a loving lean against them.
Two years ago Doogie started to have seizures. For quite awhile they were one every several months. Then they became more and more frequent. When we were at the vet to get his leg checked out again that was first thought to be an injury from a bad seizure turned out to be bone cancer. Osteosarcoma of the femoral head. The vet estimated no more than a month more he would be with us. We didn't even have 3 more weeks with him. We loved on him and spoiled him even more than he already was.
On July 26th, I came home from work and Doogie couldn't get up. His good back leg had given out and he wasn't using the leg where the cancer started anymore. Doogie tucked his head into me in the loving way he always did and I knew it was time. We said goodbye to him the next morning, 4 years to the date from when we brought you home. Maybe one day soon I'll pull out some of many of the photos we have of him, including the eaten mattress which by the way we are still sleeping on! There is a pillow stuff in the hole and it's duct taped on. Right now I can't look at many of them at a time.
We miss you more than anything sweet boy. We know you are in heaven with Cowboy's dad and his sweet Cleo, all three of you free from your cancer and your pain.