Sunday, September 7, 2014

Off Topic - Hardest Day

This one isn't fitness related or health related, but it's love and family related. 

My husband got Porter about a year before we started dating. For 2 years before we were married and 4 years after, he was our only "baby."  

When Ellie came along, we were nervous how he would react - going from an 'only child' to sharing us. Of course he did famously. He tolerated a lot through her toddler years - from being fed one piece of dog kibble at a time to being chased around by a tiny person with a bowl on her head. And he handled it all with ease and grace. 

Another little person came along. This time, he was different. He wanted to sleep in AJ's room, outside of his door.  They were instant buddies! 

In the last year, his health has declined. Our formerly 90-100 lb dog was tipping the scale at 85, 75lbs. By Christmas of 2013 we knew it was our last Christmas, but Porter fought!  We were told in March that the vet was SURE he had cancer, he just couldn't find it.  We chose not to put the pup through tests and prodding, and to just watch him closely. His weight continued to go down, despite our efforts to give him more food.

When I saw the injury to his foot on Friday night, I knew we had to take him in.  And I had a strong feeling that I knew what the vet was going to tell me. 

And she did. Unrelated to his foot, she said his gums are white, he's only eating enough calories to continue breathing and he had lost so much muscle tone she was surprised he could stand up. 

But he did stand up. Every morning.  Every single morning he greets us, he still wags his tail, brings us toys. I think we have been in denial because he was still caring, kind and loving. His demeanor hadn't changed, which I had always heard was a good sign it was "time." 

Saturday, I was able to bring him home to say goodbye to the babies. Or for the babies to say goodbye to him. For us to say goodbye. 

Thankfully, Jen was available to love on my kids while my hubby and I took Porter back for the last time.  It was peaceful and I'm so thankful we got to say our goodbyes. We miss him desperately and not a day goes by that we will not think about him.

He never barked. Ever.
He always put up with the kids crawling all over him, poking his eyes and pulling his ears.
He loved to eat watermelon and corn just like a people :-)
He always had a stuffed animal in his mouth, most of the time a giant dog we called Ralph.

There are so many other things to remember about him. We will be taking time in the next few weeks to make a memory book about him to keep. Hopefully that will help our hearts begin to heal! 



  1. beautifully written! love the pictures. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'll miss that doggy!

  2. It's obvious Porters love for his family is as strong as your love for him. I'm sorry it was his time to go, I know he will be missed terribly. Sending you love and comforting hugs.

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  4. I went through this earlier this year. It was awful. I suppose I am less emotional about it now, but I still think of Jeri all the time.

  5. This post absolutely BREAKS my heart...I am so sorry for your loss. That picture of AJ at the end hugging him...oh my. Thinking of you guys!