I guess we all have those topsy turvy moments when we don't know which end is up... sometimes when something seems bad, it is good... and when something seems good, its really bad.
This is the story of Bosco.
Bosco is my dog. Or I should say WAS my dog, until yesterday.
He was almost 15 years old. He was having a hard time getting up in the mornings. Like most old folks, he prob had arthritis. And for the past few years he has been crying for no reason. He has had a cyst on his back for a few years now and one was growing on his neck. He had developed a skin condition on his back a spot by his tail where he would chew and the hair stopped growing there. We had treated it several times and then we knew he would always suffer from this condition. He wouldn't let us touch some areas. And he got to where he wouldn't let me brush him below his waist. When he was younger he would sit as long as it took me to make his hair clean and beautiful. But lately... he was matted up and would sometimes get his long nails caught in a mat and it was very frustrating for me to blame him for not letting me brush him there. So from the waist up he was the same beautiful boy we loved... but from the back he looked like some homeless dog who couldn't find anyone to brush him. But we knew. He was our stubborn old dog.
Bosco was a miracle dog. I met him early 2000. I had just gotten a divorce and the thing I missed the most was the dog, Saber. He was a big German Shepard mix that belonged to my X. I told GOD I would like to have a dog just like Saber but just a little smaller. And one day I had a friend here from Washington and she was on my pc and I was watching tv and I looked up and saw a dog in my back yard... I said, "Hey, there's Saber", we all got excited. But it was not Saber that time. I laughed because after the divorce Saber would jump the fence and come to my house which was just a couple miles away. So I thought he had done that again... but on second look I saw it was a smaller dog that looked like Saber. We checked his tags and saw that he belonged to a neighbor around the corner. He was about 8 months old according to our PPP vet.
We went around to their house and no one was home. We went back again and no one was home... my friend from Washington was so upset... when we took him there the first time we looked around and saw the dog food stuff in the back yard so I lifted him over the fence thinking he was OK... we started walking away and I turned to look and watched as he jumped up on the chair and then up higher on the table and then over the fence into the neighbors yard and then out their gate and into the street where a car hit him in the front and then he went right between the tires. Well my friend went nuts! She called the police saying the dog needed medical care... I tried to tell her that the city of Houston police department had better things to do than worry about that dog. He was OK... We decided to take him back home.
My daughter and my friend kept going around the corner to see if anyone was home. It was very late by the time they got home... and my friend had gotten the run around form the police for hours, saying they couldn't do anything until they were told to, by the city animal control people. Well, this wasn't good enough for my friend, she just called the police and told them to meet her at the peoples house. Like I said, my daughter was keeping a vigil out for the people... and a neighbor must of known how to contact them because when the police showed up, so did they. I stayed home but my daughter and my friend went around the corner and talked to the people about what happened. And it was close to 10:30 pm when she came home and asked if we could take him. I told her I would think about it.
That night I prayed to GOD and I asked GOD what to do. My house was filled with kids... I was a single mother... I wanted a dog like Saber and this dog could be it. So the next morning I told the kids... Yeah... this could be the answer to my prayers... so we went around to their house and again they were all gone, but we saw the dog tied to a fishing stringer, you know... the kind you use to put your fish on while your fishing... it was so short about 6 feet and was next to the water and food, but was still restricting him from the yard... I realized that... not only could he be the answer to my prayers... we might be the answer to his! So I wrote a note saying we would take him and left it on their door. Again, my daughter couldn't wait till the people got home... she was constantly walking around the corner to see if they were home.
When she saw a car there she came and got me and we went around there and knocked on the door. The whole family came to the door. The father said, "we were just talking about this." And he had my note in his hand. He told us that they were having a problem keeping him in the back yard. (Their house was so pristine they didn't allow dogs in the house). I finally convinced the boy to let us take him. I had a house full of kids who would love him... and he would be a house dog... and the kid could come over any time to visit!
He finally said OK and he led the dog to my house while the dad carried the huge bag of dog food. They were very nice people but I could see they were relieved to find him a loving home. And the boy did come visit every now and then, but after about 4 years, he stopped coming around. I am guessing these people are the sort of people who stay busy, I think they all worked. I would also see them from time to time when I would walk Bosco to the vets office. Its just around the corner past their house, half way up the street.
We has many good years...
But lately... I have been very concerned... and frustrated... poor Bosco... slowly became blind and deaf... he couldn't hear me when I would call him. He used to love going outside with us... like, in the driveway... but last week a neighbor lady complained. My daughter told her he was blind and deaf and wouldn't hurt her. He was a loving dog... loved most all people. Loved most all other animals.
And after Saber had jumped his fence so many times, my X just left him here. So Saber and Bosco... great buddies until Saber, who was about 12 years old went walking on his own... he was also blind and deaf... in his mind, he was just 'walkin'... which he loved to do! And stepped out to cross the street and because he couldn't see or hear... he was hit by a car... a neighbor came and told me... and I called my X who came and got him and buried him. He has been gone... let me see... January 16th, it was 5 years.
The last few months I have been very frustrated. Bosco was old and didn't like the kids messing with him... and by now... my daughter has 2 little boys, both in diapers... and they love to play with Bosco... but Bosco didn't love to play with them... and would always try to get away from them... sometimes nipping at them. He would seek his privacy in my personal bathroom in my bedroom. There is a dark stain on the wall where he laid in the corner there... nice and cool and quiet! He was a GOOD dog... I loved him so very much.
But the worry... it was hard seeing him have a hard time getting started in the morning.
And when he became less tolerant of the children... I prayed to GOD on what to do.
I had been talking about putting him down. But everyone said NO and wouldn't go for it. But I was worried. He wasn't hearing me calling him back from the street. We have an open house... lots of friends... and he would just walk out the door with us. And couldn't hear me calling him home.
He was also phantom barking... like barking at nothing, at odd times... like 3 or 4 am. I am a very light sleeper and can hear a pin drop. A dog bark goes through me like hearing one of the kids fall down. It goes through me like a million frozen knives all at once. I would get up and all was well.
His stomach was getting sensitive... many days I would wake up to stomach bile by the back door... and just prayed that the boys wouldn't get into it when they woke up before anyone of the adults. Nothing worse in my head than visualizing the boys playing in the dog throw up.
I think what tipped me to the edge was when he got vicious with one of the boys last week.
I called my vet and talked to them about it and they told me he was so old and has had so many shots over the years he doesn't have rabies. I was concerned about the small scratches he had put on one of my grandsons... and knew he didn't have rabies. Well, they said they didn't do the euthanasia and gave me some numbers to call. I took the day to talk to a few friends. And got some very good support.
Like my brother said... I am doing him a favor. And to my dad it is just the cost of a bullet. But he is country folk, that's just the way its done out in the country. But I couldn't let anyone do that to Bosco. I was torn between the grandchildren and the dog. It was the worst position ever. But I knew what I had to do.
I didn't want to do it... but I had to.
I finally decided to take him to the City. I mean... if he would of bit a neighbor the city would come and take him. So we decided to go to the city. But I didn't choose the city of Houston... we chose the city of Pasadena. I must say... The city of Pasadena, Texas has some GREAT people working there!
When I went in I was greeted at the door by a VERY nice lady... I didn't even get her name.
But she was a small middle aged Mexican American... Her hair was long and permed and she had on make up... very lovely lady... she was so understanding and so helpful! I just wanted to hug her, but I didn't. I cried the whole time. I did have to pay... but I didn't mind that. I just knew that Bosco wouldn't have to suffer. He would never walk in front of a car like Saber did and get hit and be in pain for an hour or so until he died. He would never have to suffer the pain of a heart attack... he would simply 'fall asleep'... this gave me comfort.
And there was a beautiful young girl who came out to get him... I wonder if he thought it was my daughter? Well she stood there for a few minutes... we all talked... I didn't get all into a long goodbye... because I had been saying goodbye for a while now... and I was already crying silent tears... I would of broke down if I would of gotten down in his face to say anything... but they knew... and Bosco was just so happy to have all these lovely ladies make over him... he WAS a GOOD dog!
Even now... as I am finalizing here... tears are dripping from my eyes...
But like that lady said... I gave him a good life!
And I allowed him to die with dignity...
RIP little buddy Bosco...
I will see you when I get there!