Zeus - King of the Dogs

Sunday, April 5, 2009
This blog post sucks to write.

The dog I spent the last twelve years growing up with has taken a turn for the worse.

My mother had two Alaskan Malamutes - Krystal and Zeus. Krystal was about a year older than Zeus, and they grew up together their entire lives. They didn't always get along - I remember one fight where they weren't distracted by anything, even by bacon being dangled in their face. But they still grew up together as buds. When Krystal passed on two years ago, Zeus had a certain sadness about him that he never seemed to fully recover from.

In the last six months, Zeus' health has steadily declined. He has hip problems as expected from most dogs this size, he's gone blind in one eye and has completely lost bladder control.

Today his pain seemed much more intense and constant than normal. The poor guy struggles to stand up on his own, usually getting maybe 1/3 of the way up before collapsing in defeat. When he does manage to get up, he appears to have doggie Alzheimer's - he doesn't seem to recognize people or places, and he just wanders around confused and disoriented.

I went over tonight to visit the family and say my final farewells. We fed Zeus a final meal of chicken noodle soup, and treated him with a few scraps of chicken from dinner.

I can't wait to play with you again 70 years from now.

A few more photos here.


Allison said...

I am sorry Dave. I remember Zeus and Krystal. They were good dogs. :-(

Brein said...

He is beautiful! I remember having to put our family dog to sleep. I think what was even sadder than Buffy dying was how much it affected my mom. It amazing how much a part of our families these little guys are.

Kellie & Cody said...

Dave--I'm sorry!! That is always so hard...

AuroraLeigh said...

He's gorgeous. I'm sorry for the loss. :(

Cassie the Great said...

Sad. I'm really sorry.

[lisa] said...

I am so sorry Dave. I certainly feel your pain.

Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.
There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.
There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.
The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....