when dogweight fades away
February 6, 2019 10:22 AM   Subscribe

I have two old dogs that are starting to slow down and I find myself consciously checking dogweight several times each day.
posted by flyingfox at 11:07 AM on February 6, 2019 [5 favorites]

brought fresh to my mind the first time, some 4 months ago, that I enpetted my late cat in the usual way and found her to have undeniably less volume than normal, and it stabbed me direct in the heart and from that minute I knew.
posted by We put our faith in Blast Hardcheese at 11:08 AM on February 6, 2019 [7 favorites]

I was so sad looking at Murphy's last video on Instagram last night so thank you for this.

ESPECIALLY since it brought me back to the Toast archives, which are back on the internet omg why did I not know sooner.


I am sad about Murphy but also am gleefully re-reading Movie Yelling With Mallory and Nicole about Captain America: Civil War and I am very happy about that.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 11:14 AM on February 6, 2019

with this and his instagram post about Murphy today, I have definitely cried twice about this dog I've never met.
posted by wellifyouinsist at 12:15 PM on February 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

I have lost a dog a year for the past 3 years, the last one on Thanksgiving, I don't think I can read this.

Also after the first 2 I have only adopted older dogs so it's going to keep happening. I feel very bad that I am the reminder of dog mortality in my friend group.

In conclusion, dogs are the best and I know Daniel Ortberg is too good of a writer for me to get though this post unscathed.
posted by Duffington at 1:35 PM on February 6, 2019

Thank you for this. I was thinking of posting it myself. Little old Murphy, God love him.
posted by Countess Elena at 2:02 PM on February 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

I know Daniel Ortberg is too good of a writer for me to get though this post unscathed

Yeah, I posted it not because I got sentimental over (yet another) stranger's dog--I did, but that's not of particular interest to Mefi--but because the essay, while short, is beautiful and touches on a particular aspect of dog loss I hadn't before seen addressed in quite that way.

I feel very bad that I am the reminder of dog mortality in my friend group.

I suspect that if you become a serial senior dog adopter you come to look at their lives in a somewhat different way. Not loving them any less, but accepting their mortality as a given that most of us deny throughout most of our relationships with our puppers.
posted by praemunire at 2:43 PM on February 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

Yeah, didn't need that today. (Recent ERU flare appears to be taking the last of my filly's eyesight. Vet is not hopeful and it's likely I'll have to put her down by the weekend. She is a week short of seven months old, a lovely, well-made filly out of my beloved mare who died when the filly was three months old. Her registration papers arrived in the mail last week. A keepsake, I guess.)
posted by which_chick at 4:13 PM on February 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

I can not say with perfect certainty that this essay is why I decided not to go back to work after my dentist appointment this morning. I can say I decided I would take the afternoon off, bought a new bag of dog treats, and took my puppy to the the dog park. Her little muddy feet needed to be washed afterwards but she loves water so much much more of her got wet than intended. Later, after she was dry, she snuck back into the bathroom and rolled around in the wet tube. My house now smells like wet dog and she is happy and full sleeping on the most uncomfortable floor surface we have, as is her want.

Thank you for posting.
posted by lepus at 4:43 PM on February 6, 2019 [6 favorites]

We made the mistake of getting three young dogs all within a year, now 14ish years later they're all winding down and one of them's got at least two kinds of cancer. Heading into this past weekend I thought we were about to have to call it; there were some cheeseburgers, and he got to walk around in the *front!!!* yard for a bit, as a special treat. He rallied, but today he got startled by the lawn service and I found out he doesn't have the lung capacity to bark anymore. It won't be long.

He hasn't been able (and eventually lost interest) to sleep on the bed with us for a year now, almost exactly. That was the dogweight I knew the best: the shift of the mattress as his 80 (now 50) pounds re-settled, maybe flumping up against me or his dad. The way we nicknamed him Spot Stealer not only because of the blue ticking on his white chest (and in his long invented dog history he stole them from a guy in Canada this one time) but how he would wait for me to get out of bed and lay down in my spot, head on my pillow. Or we called him Buttsnuggler because he would curl up in the back of his dad's legs...or lay between us with his actual ass on my pillow (in fact, one of the last times he slept in the bed, he did that and pooped in his sleep, none of us were super thrilled about it). He sleeps on a mattress at the foot of the bed now; we wake up the instant we hear a toenail click on the floor because he's up, and he might fall or he might be having one of his spinning attacks, or he might be pooping. We put light-colored towels or sheets on the rug now, so you can avoid stepping in it in the dark, and I know she's spying on us but "Alexa turn on the bedroom lights" comes in handy when he suddenly cries or thumps.

My husband's downloading all our photos off Flickr today, dozens of puppy pictures of the three of them. GIR was a teeny little thing that was like one of those little sponges you put in water, he grew up to be a handsome fella. I'm going to miss him.
posted by Lyn Never at 5:16 PM on February 6, 2019 [10 favorites]

I've loved seeing Murphy in Daniel and Grace's posts, and I love their posts in general, and I love love love LOVE small dogs. Reading the news about Murphy has made me so sad. I hope Murphy will know, in his next phase of consciousness, how good he had it. It would be cool if Murphy gains a kind of reading comprehension that will let him see how much he was loved. I have a lot of sincere high hopes for Dog Afterlife, and it's a fun thing to think about when the grief is so much.

I have an elder chihuahua in my lap right now and he smells like warm garbage, but in a really good way. I love how his breath smells. Thinking about his eventual death feels too overwhelming, like looking at the sun.

Lyn Never, your GIR looks like such a sweet friend. I'm sorry for what you're going through.
posted by witchen at 6:37 PM on February 6, 2019 [3 favorites]

GIR looks like a very advanced boy to me.
posted by praemunire at 7:25 PM on February 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

You would think that after a couple of years I would be able to read a post and comments about old dogs without bursting into tears, but obviously it is still too soon.
posted by Dip Flash at 11:38 PM on February 6, 2019

Oh, darling Murphy. I remember when Danny adopted him and the toastariat was so delighted (self included). I was thinking recently that it must be soon or maybe it had already happened and Damny hadn’t mentioned. Poor buddies, all around.
posted by librarina at 12:12 AM on February 7, 2019

Lyn Never, I’m sorry and so so empathetic. Sending y’all love.
posted by librarina at 12:13 AM on February 7, 2019

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