8.12.2005

good news, bad news

and the good is really good and the bad is really bad.

the bad news: my stepmother and father put down my childhood dog, wally. without telling me. granted, it's not like they removed wally from my house and had him put to sleep - wally lives with them and has lived with them since I was 18. I got wally for my 16th birthday, so I spent 2 years caring for him while my dad and KKKathy had him for 12 years. kathy was the one who taught him all the tricks he knew, and took him for walks, and groomed him, and fed him, and later in life she would carefully wash him and clean up after him as his entire back end was paralyzed from arthritis. so it's not like they had to consult with me. clearly wally was kathy's dog after all this time. but I loved that dog, too, and I would have liked to know that they were going to do it - or at least that they had. I found out by sean telling me after kathy had mentioned it IN PASSING on the phone regarding something else entirely.

the last time I saw wally was this past sunday. kathy said that this could possibly be the last time I saw him, and I said I knew. he was gray, and old, and deaf, and blind, and couldn't walk. my dad had wanted to put him out of his misery a few months ago, but kathy firmly said she wasn't ready for that yet. and as of sunday, kathy still wasn't ready. in fact, she said she wasn't sure that they could go on vacation at the end of august because she didn't want anyone else watching wally. so you can imagine how I felt finding out the way I did that it was this past tuesday, 48 hours after her telling me she wasn't ready, that wally was put down.

like I said, it wasn't my decision. he was hardly my dog. but I told sean - I think it would be evident by the way I cried when my dad told me that they were even considering doing this; that when I was finally able to, I bought a dog EXACTLY LIKE WALLY, same breed, same coloring, same goddamn BREEDER as wally, because I loved wally so much; it would be evident that I did, in fact, love wally and would care deeply when he was gone.

I took pictures of wally on that last day, and I'll post them here when I download them. wally is much grayer and broader and has bigger paws than maggie, but when wally was a younger dog, he was almost indistinguishable from maggie:

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it's not the greatest picture, but it's one where I think maggie resembles wally really closely. from what we know of our breeder, it's entirely possible that maggie is actually related to wally.

I haven't talked to kathy or my dad yet. I don't know what I'll say. they had no obligation to me, and I'm angry, and they're probably very sad, so I don't know what's appropriate. for now, I'm going the avoidance route.

the good news, and I wish it were timed better: bella can crawl. she crawled clear across the room for sean yesterday, and again for me when I got home. she pushes herself up to sitting and can get up and down while holding onto furniture like it's no thang. gone are the days when we could plop her on the floor and quick let the dog out, or keep a fan on the floor, or put her in the middle of our bed while we get dressed. now more than ever, we have to get stuff done with our house. babyproofing, but more importantly - new carpet, new pergo in the front room, and a new kitchen floor.

12 validations:

grody jo-dee said...

i'm so sorry about wally. my parents put down my childhood dog when i was away at college. they "thought it would be easier if i didn't know until it was done". WRONG. still to this day no other dog compares.:(

isn't it amazing how new crawlers make you want all new flooring? everything seems so not new and potentially infected or something.
but, congratulations! i'm sensing that you know crawling is a double-edged sword (a lot more running around for you!).

NME said...

Very sad for all of you involved. Maybe it would be appropriate to wait for all the emotions of the moment - yours and theirs - to calm down before you subtly let them know you were hurt they didn't let you know before they had him put down. That is if you can do that given the amount of disappointment you are feeling.

I'm glad you got to see him on Sunday though and at least they let you know that it might be the last time you saw him so you could say goodbye.

So excited for mobile Bella. I got all paranoid about floors and dirt and stuff when Noah started moving around - and now I just remind myself constanly that many children are raised in much more precarious situations and still turn out well if the love is there even if the floor is dirt.

Missuz J said...

Oh Patrice. I'm so sorry. Even though Jimmy is a huge pain in my ass, i've already grown to love him and can empathize on a small small level with what you're feeling. That totally totally sucks.

KATIEmagic said...

I can't imagine. I'm sorry. I'm sad for all of you.

Except baby Bella, yay for crawling!

Jen said...

I am so sorry to hear about Wally. My parents did something almost as unforgivable when I was a kid- they gave away my dog, Pokey, without telling me. My little sister had bad asthma, so they were trying everything to help her, but I could never fully forgive them for that. I cried and cried.

We had to put down a dog in 2002, and it was one of the worst things I have ever had to do in my life. I don't wish that on anyone- it is truly heartbreaking. One of my dogs now is 17 and a half years old, and I pray that he will one day go in his sleep (not anytime soon), because I never want to have to go through that again.

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Katy said...

First, what the hell is with all the ad-bloggers. Grr. Second. I'm so sorry about Wally. When (ahem) Boobecca had Buddy (the family dog) put down, I found out at work and had to go sit in the break room and cry.

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M.Thom said...

So sorry to hear about Wally. It's so hard to lose a dog...but those of us who know that all the great years are worth the pain of their loss are the ones who know the joy of having a dog in their lives.

Also, yay for Miss Bella! Do you also have baby-proofing issues?

Missuz J said...

OK--Just for the record--Buddy was seriously seriously suffering when I made that decision, and if I hadn't taken him in to live with us when my parents moved, my dad would have had him put down for the sake of convenience. We tried to do the best thing--and after he lived with us for a year--without any help from mom and dad for the medical bills--I felt like that was our decision to make.

Sorry to hijack Patrice--but I felt a bit attacked there.

Jen O. said...

Poor Wally. Losing an animal is akin to losing a human. Do you think that Kathy told Sean, so that she would be relieved of the burden of telling you herself? She's sad, and telling you would be living it all over again. You might be more sad than angry, but sometimes angry is easier?