Monday, November 4, 2013
This evening we had to say goodbye to our beloved companion, MacDuff. He was a courageous fellow, but he had come to the end of his road. He was 13 1/2 this September, and he lived longer than either of my previous Scotties.
We had been treating him at home for some health issues; our vet was very good and dedicated to work with us. MacDuff had basically gone blind over the past year, and he had arthritis in his hips and some liver problems. But late last week he took a bad turn for the worse; vomiting, diarrhea, and labored breathing. In addition, we discovered a lump at the base of his throat, which the vet said almost certainly indicated lymphoma. Some further tests would have confirmed that diagnosis, but at his age, it would not have made a difference. He was not a candidate for surgery, and we would not subject him to treatments that would have briefly prolonged his life, but not given him a better quality of life.
The vet's office was kind enough to wait until our son could get home from Greensboro where he is working, so we were all three there to say goodbye. Will was ten years old when we got MacDuff, so they literally grew up together. We used to refer to MacDuff as Will's "little brother." :)
Geographically, the furthest MacDuff ever traveled was to the North Carolina coast, but metaphorically speaking, he traveled many miles with us. He followed us quietly around the house each day because he always wanted to know what we were doing and he wanted to be with his people. This weekend, that was not the case, which was a big indication of how badly he felt.
In the evenings, our big routine was to "greet" Will and Pops (Mr. Forest Manor) at the top of the basement steps when they got home from work. When Will came home to visit from college, MacDuff was always so glad to see him. When Will was in high school, he and my husband went to Philmont Scout Reservation in New Mexico for two weeks. I felt so much better knowing that MacDuff was here to keep me company and protect me while they were gone.
One of the best things about MacDuff is that he was blessed with the "happy gene." He truly was the best-natured little chap. It is true that some dogs smile, and he seemed to smile and grin all the time. :) Oh, how we will miss that! Once again, I am so grateful God created dogs in such a way that they can be wonderful friends and companions to us, and all they ask from us is food, water, exercise, and lots of love. In return, they give us so much joy and loyalty.
Rest in peace, MacDuff, and I truly believe we will see you again one day. You were the best.