Tuesday, April 15, 2008



Well as many of you already know our Great Dane Miss Daisy Mae better known as Daisy passed away on Mar. 31. I used to be one of those people who didn't understand why people got SO upset over losing a pet. I have lost many pets and cried over some but I was a wreck when Daisy died and still can't really talk about it in detail without breaking down which I will probably do now. I think this blog is more for me than any of you. I am having a really hard time "getting over it" and thought maybe writing/blogging about it would help. Working in the pet business since I was 10 I have seen many people buy new pets when one dies and that is my dilemna now. Do I or don't I? But first a little background................we got Daisy when she was 6 weeks old and Elijah was just a LITTLE 17 month old. She only came up to his butt and they were so cute together. Minor attitude adjustments were made by our two cats but we were all in love with our new puppy and she was a perfect fit. Elijah and Daisy were hilarious together both sweet, innocent, wobbly and clumsy! A few months later we thought we might lose her when she started limping and completely stopped eating. After many trips to the vet fearing the worst she was diagnosed with metabolic bone disease which in short form is basically growing pains and an imbalance of minerals. She made it and grew to be the biggest baby ever. Fast forward to 4 1/2 years later............Daisy was MY dog and she knew it. She was amazing! She was always by my side no matter what, seriously. If I went outside, she went or sat by the door waiting for my return. If I was going to the bathroom and didn't shut the door completely, there she was sitting in front of me repetitively raising her paw up to my chest for me to shake not realizing it was not the best time. I would tell her to get out so she would raise the other paw just in case I changed my mind. If I was home cleaning, she would follow me from room to room. If I was in the garage doing laundry, she was right there waiting for me. She could be totally passed out on the couch that she never learned was not actually her bed and if I left the room she would pop up and follow. She laid on the floor next to the bed that is if she wasn't trying to get on the bed. She slept with us for many months as a puppy NOT BY OUR CHOICE. I would wake up feeling trapped under the covers and there she would be laying between my legs totally paralyzing me between the sheets. Not funny I used to panic! I tried for months to stop it but she would always sneak up in the middle of the night. Soon she got WAY to big to fit on our bed with us but as soon as Martez would leave for work in the morning or if we got out of bed she'd pop up there like it was hers. I never seemed to make her believe it wasn't! She learned to let herself out to pee and then learned to open the door to let herself back in. Boy that really freaked out company! She later trained our English Bulldog to do the same although there are many times I wish she had kept that trick to herself!! I always felt so safe with her! She was sweet but people were VERY intimidated by her size and I liked that to a certain degree. I always thought if someone were to come in they would probably see her and turn around and if they didn't I honestly believe she would NEVER let anyone hurt me or my family. Martez could walk by and smack me on the butt and you could hear her nails on the wood floors running to my "rescue". She did that for any of us though.......sometimes I would smack Martez and call for help just to see her run and try to stop HIM when he was just standing there the whole time! Ha! If Martez and I were playing with the kids on our bed and we got too rowdy, there she was climbing up to stop the chaos and lay on us all! I won't lie Daisy occassionally was not the perfect angel. She would often grab stuff off the kitchen counters but at least she didn't climb on them because it was right at her level for the snatching! And the number one rule in our house was NEVER EVER leave your food unattended because she will snatch it and run out the door within seconds and you can't blame her if you leave it! One time she ran out the door carry a brand new box of cheese bread left on the counter and I think she got it out and ate it whole. Boy that was a hard one for Isaiah to learn!

She liked to play in the snow then track it all in no matter how many times I would shut the door she would just open it and go play. She often got stuck in bathrooms by merely walking in then accidently shutting the door with her hiney while turning around. She would then scratch at the door periodically until someone heard her. I always wondered why she didn't just bark. The scratches were nothing some Old English wouldn't fix! No matter what she did or how annoying it was to keep everything 6ft high, how many meals she stole or just annoying me at times for always being right there........I would give anything to have her back right next to me!!

Mar. 31
4:45am Martez leaves for work and Daisy is asleep.
5:55am I get up and I normally get her to go outside then she will crawl into our bed and watch me get ready BUT I heard her go outside on her own so I just went about the normal morning routine.
6:50am Now I am making the boys lunches and notice Daisy wasn't RIGHT there in case I drop something she is the instant quicker picker upper!! I thought that was odd so I call her name with no response which is HIGHLY unusual. I figured she was playing outside but she would come when she heard her food hit the dish.
7am I put food in Daisy's bowl with no running response. I look out the back glass door and see her laying on the ground which is odd since she only does that when it is sunny. I call her name several times and I stand there thinking to myself wow she is so big. I noticed what at the time seemed to be hiccups and walked out there only to watch my big baby take her final breaths with me pleading for her to just get up. Her stomach was HUGE and hard. I felt SO bad! I was wailing and so freaked out! It isn't like I could just pick her up and take her to the vet. She was easily 150 lbs. or more! I kept calling my mom and dad with no answer. I just stood there bawling loudly wanting anyone to answer the phone. I was in complete shock and had no clue what to do, I felt helpless. I kept saying "No Daisy we have to get in the car!" I kept walking around to the side of the house so the boys wouldn't hear me and see her dead on the ground. I was so hysterical! I finally got ahold of Martez who in disbelief and total fear from me screaming on the phone left work to rush home. I then finally talked to my mom and dad and then the vet. I was so lost! I had no clue what to do. When I was younger we lived in the country and when an animal would die we would just bury it. It is now against the law to bury pets within city limits and even if we wanted to we would have to have them come out to mark the lines. Can you imagine the size of hole we would have to dig about 5ft by 5ft then however deep......we would have to have a backhoe. So I call the vet and ask what I am supposed to do and who to call.....here were my options as explained to me by the vet....1) Bring her into the office and they will arrange to have her cremated 2) I can keep the ashes in a "beautiful, handcrafted" urn or they will scatter them "at a beautiful peaceful" place for us OR option 3) you can call the city and they will pick her up and dispose of her AKA take her to the dump for ONLY $10.......I lost control spouted some unpleasantries at the poor woman and then quickly apologized. I just wanted her buried I didn't know how or where but I wanted her buried not cremated. I have problems just thinking about cremation. It is a personal decision everyone must make and people can fry themselves if they want but it is not for me well or Daisy.
We finally made arrangements for Daisy to be buried at a pet cemetary......and yes nutjobs I have some issues with that simply from seeing the movie as a teenager but hey what was I supposed to do. We load Daisy and take her to the cemetary where we are informed he can not bury Daisy because he does not have a casket large enough for her. He said in 30 years of being a veterinarian and running a pet cemetary he had never seen a dog that large. I said so people don't bury big dogs and he said he hadn't even seen a Dane get that big especially a female. (I am quite sure by the way there are many Danes larger than her that have died and been buried!) Great now what! I explained that although she was a very large girl she was not always that fat in the stomach area and he said she obviously died of "twisted gut or bloat" and was extremely bloated but he had no way to bury her. They called another cemetary for us and they said they would take care of us. So we drove to Pet Memorial Gardens......a much nicer place than the first cemetary anyway. It proceeded to pour down rain get very windy and the electricity went off as soon as we got there. At a pet cemetary in a storm with no electricity......that situation seriously made me think of the movie!! SO we had to sit there until it all subsided and then the electricity came back on...Thank God b/c I don't know how much longer I could cope with my dog dying and having to sit at a pet cemetary with no electricity and really no way out b/c of the storm!!!! The lady was odd but nice she saw Daisy then said WOW she is big! I started crying and said please say you can bury her for me! She said well let me measure her......44in long but only from ears to base of tail (basically this didn't count her head) then 38.5in tall at the shoulder which doesn't include neck and head.....it was awkward because it was still raining and we were measuring her in the back of the truck. She then she measured the caskets....too small....too small.....too small....she thought she would be able to use the next to largest casket however she wouldn't fit so they used the largest casket they had which they had NEVER used before but thankfully only charged me for the one right below it and we had to pay for two lots. I know it sounds completely crazy but she deserved it. I never buried a dog in a cemetary before and don't know if I would again unless they were special like her. I cried everyday straight for at least a week then cried sporatically after that. I looked up her cause of death and bawled as it was described as "excrutiatingly painful" and most will die of shock. You only have 1 to 2 hours to get the dog to the vet and have the costly surgery done before they will die. The guilt just kills me. I constantly think why didn't I check on her when I realized she wasn't in our room since she was in there EVERY morning, why didn't I go outside before I did, was she laying out there just wondering where I was, did she cry for help and I didn't hear her, and did she wait until I finally came outside to take her final couple of breaths? No one can answer all my questions. Now I had the painful task of telling Elijah. He actually did pretty well as far as not crying but he brought it up constantly. Isaiah wouldn't be able to really understand and that entire evening he kept saying "Daidy outside!?!?" Then the next day as I was cooking dinner I could hear Isaiah outside yelling "Daidy comere honey! Where are you? Daidy where are you?" He then came inside asking for her and I attempted to explain she had died and he just yelled at me "Daidy not dead!" and walked through the house yelling for her and then outside again. It was sad but I had to let him look so maybe it would help him understand. It broke my heart listening to him. For weeks out of habit I would call her name, yell at her to get off my bed when I walked out of the bathroom, tell the boys to watch their plates....you name it I did it. I felt so incredibly stupid too! I don't feel as safe anymore. It isn't that I think something will happen to me I think I just relied on her to protect me if God forbid someone were to break in or try to harm my children in anyway. I always felt safe with her. I am sorry this is long but the point of me writing all of this is:
Do I get another Great Dane? If so now or later? Will I constantly compare the new one to her and resent it when it isn't as good? Maybe a different color will help? Would I just be replacing her? I don't know. Then my boys saw a Boston Terrier up at the store and asked if they could hold it. Sure I said and that was it, they fell in love. I would never in my wildest dreams think of ever getting a Boston Terrier. Hello.....Angela and Terriers do not mesh well. I don't like hyper dogs. I think Bostons are bug eyed and ugly. Well we left the puppy there and hours later Elijah comes to me all sad and says, "Mommy I really like that puppy! Can I have him?"
I said, "No baby I am sorry but I think it would be too hyper for mommy. Maybe we'll go look at some Great Dane puppies this weekend."
He replies with, "but I want that little puppy!"
I explained to him that the Boston won't stay that size forever and he would probably just want every puppy he saw that wanted to play with him. He then pleaded, "I want a puppy that will stay small so I can sleep with it and play with it and it won't knock me down." I said, "Well Daisy used to try to sleep with you and you didn't want her to!" He cameback with, "MOM she took my whole bed!" I just started crying! I guess I just assumed we needed another Great Dane but that little fart made me think. We are wanting to sell our house within the next year and find a bigger house so showing a house with a clumsy Great Dane puppy could be a pain. It would be easier to get a small dog now then add a Dane later rather than adding a small dog to a Dane. I guess I never really thought about life without Daisy. She was the most gentle dog and she loved HER boys however she couldn't really play with them. You see Daisy weighed around 150 but in her eyes she was a 10lb lapdog! She would never purposely hurt the boys but sometimes through excitement she would whip them in the head with her tail (which hurts) or knock them down unintentionally of course. They could sleep ON her, play ON her but they couldn't really play WITH her. Well the next day we saw the Boston Terrier again and the smaller of the two is actually really calm, cute and not really buggy eyed. He will play for a while then go off by himself to play then just crawl up in Elijah's lap and fall asleep.

Now the bigger one of the two Boston Terriers I believe is on crack and would never survive in my household but the smaller one is unusually calm. SO FINALLY HERE IS THE HEARTBREAKING DILEMNA: Do I get another Great Dane? Wait a couple of years until the boys are a little bigger and we have a bigger house? Do I get the Boston Terrier? Or simple a smaller breed dog? Can I live with a Boston Terrier? Do I get the dog my boys can play with then get a Great Dane later? Or will the novelty of the small dog wear off and the boys will quit playing with it? WHAT DO I DO?

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