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Good boy, Logan, good bye.

Logan the Dog died yesterday afternoon. We’d known for the last six months that this day was coming – the writing was on the wall – but it still seemed to come too soon, too abruptly. That whole thing about one human year is the equivalent of seven dog years, it means that dogs age and deteriorate very rapidly once they start. All you can do is watch helplessly, and keep paying the vet bills and hoping for the best.

In Logan’s case, it started with the diabetes diagnosis in February, accompanied by lethargy and weakness and a stretch of vet visits.

He went blind. He still had a little peripheral vision, but he was mostly blind. And he was still lethargic. He’d lie around all day and barely have the energy to go for a pee. But some days were better than others. Some days we half convinced ourselves he was getting better.

One evening, a few weeks ago, he peed blood red. It wasn’t blood-tinged urine; it looked like he was peeing pure blood. You see something like that and your knees almost buckle. We rushed him to emergency, where they did some tests. Based on the test results, the vet said he was ruling out the more common and benign possibilities, like infections. The next step would be to look for something “more sinister.”

But the next day GC took him to his usual vet, and she looked over the test results and said she thought it might be an infection. She put him on antibiotics, and things seemed to improve. He started peeing urine instead of blood.

Yesterday morning, he was sick. He didn’t want breakfast. He was very thirsty, but he threw up his water. GC went and got him some pediolyte solution, but he threw that up too. He just lay in GC’s back yard for hours. We sat out there on the grass with him. If we held the water bowl and lifted his head, he would drink gratefully. His tongue was white, but it would return to pink while he drank.

In the afternoon we took him to the emergency vet. Peter and Julia helped carry him to the car on a blanket. The vet techs met us at the back door of emergency with a stretcher.

The vet, Dr. Betty Szyngiel, is a lovely woman. Compassionate and practical. She told us his blood sugar was off the charts, his pulse was rapid and irregular, he was anemic and extremely weak. She didn’t know exactly what was wrong with him without doing expensive diagnostic tests, but whatever it was, it was bad. Her best guess at this point was a bleeding tumor. Cancer.

She was very supportive of GC’s decision to euthanize Logan.

Logan died at 4:45 Sunday afternoon, while we wept and stroked his head and told him what a good dog he was.

And he was. He was a sweet and gentle boy with big brown eyes and beautiful long white eyelashes. He had the cutest face and the most wonderful disposition. All his neighbours loved him. Little children adored him. Whenever they asked what kind of dog he was, GC always said he was part Golden Retriever and part teddy bear.

He and GC knew each other so well and loved each other deeply. They had a good twelve years together. Life expectancy for Goldens is 10-12 years, so they squeezed as much time as they could out of life. But it’s never quite enough, is it?

Rest in peace, Logan…Logie, Mandingo Warrior, Legolas, Shmelly, Mr. Canogie. If there’s a heaven, I know you’re young again and running free in fields of dandelions, and there’s always cheese and oatmeal for breakfast, and peanut butter for lunch. There’s no thunderstorms or fireworks, no salt on the sidewalks, no visits to the vet, no need to have your ears cleaned. There’s all the time in the world for checking out interesting smells and taking naps and waiting for squirrels to come back down out of the trees you chased them up into.

You were a good boy and we’re going to miss you a lot.

57 comments to Good boy, Logan, good bye.

  • mosprott

    I’m so sorry to hear about Logan. You were good companions, and he loved you very much.

  • Thank you for asking us to help carry Logan to the car. It gave us a last chance to say goodbye to a much loved dog. I always liked dog-sitting Logan because he was so easy to care for – good disposition, always happy to see me, easy to walk around the park, never any trouble finishing his dinner!

    We remember when Logan for arrived in the ‘hood. Our Lab was queen of the block (or so she thought anyway) and she told Logan how to behave. He never had any problem with her being in charge. Now they are both gone but not forgotten. Dogs break our hearts but make them whole too.

  • Kathleen

    Zoom, what a wonderful tribute to Logan. I am sure that Duncan will be looking for his little friend. Thank you for posting this wonderful tribute to Logan and GC. They were really alike.

  • Connie

    Oh, I’m so sorry for your loss, GC and Zoom!! My Lily is going on 10 and is also diabetic and blind. Pets really become like one of the family, and it hurts alot to loose them. Hugs to both of you…

  • I’m so sorry for your loss and for GC’s as well. When we lost my golden, Emma in 2006, my son said he wanted to imagine she was in a place where meat grows on trees. Xoxo.

  • I’m so sorry to hear the news Zoom, and please pass on my regrets and sympathy to GC as well. I’m shedding more than a few tears for Logan…he sounds like a sweetheart.

  • what a heart-pounder when the body starts to misbehave like that.

    aw, sorry to hear about Logan. sympathies to you and GC.

  • So sad! Pets are our trusty familiars. It’s hard to let them go.

  • redfraggle

    all my love. beautiful tribute.

  • I’m so sorry to hear about Logan. It doesn’t matter how long you have them for, it’s never long enough.

  • lucy

    Sorry to hear this. My condolences to you and GC.

    Yes, Logan was a cute puppy!

  • Gillian

    What an excellent post. Sympathy to you both!

  • kelly

    I am so, so sorry to hear about poor Logan. From all of your stories on your blog it was obvious that Logan was an absolutely outstanding dog and he was surrounded by people and animal friends who loved him dearly. I completely agree with Valerie’s comment that no matter how long they are are around it will never be long enough. My sympathies to you, GC, Duncan and everyone else who knew and loved Logan. He will be missed.

    • Thanks Kelly. Yes, he was an absolutely outstanding dog, in all the ways that dogs generally are outstanding, and in his own special ways too.

  • Awwwww, I am so sad to read this. My deepest condolences, having been there more times than i care to count.

    I am just feeling sorry for those heavenly squirrels.

    • It’s okay Antonia, the fun is in the chasing of squirrels, not the actual catching, so the heavenly squirrels are always just beyond grasp.

  • future landfill

    I’ve two friends who’ve recently seen their old pups go on, and now my old gal skitters around and fumbles up the back stairs that were only last year a couple of bounds. No more the graceful leaping twists after a snowball lofted just above her head. In his book “The Dog and I”, in a chapter called “You Will Know When It’s Time”, Roy MacGregor relates the bittersweet feelings we succumb to when we see the ol’ sweetie stirring to the life-force just one more/last time.

    The critters deserve heaven even if the rest of us don’t, and I expect Logan’s already sniffed ol’ Sam’s butt and vice-versa, like dogs do.

    Bless you, Zoom…

    • future landfill, I found it quite comforting to imagine Logan and Sam might sniffing butts up in heaven.

      And you’re right, dogs deserve heaven; they’re so good. Please give your old dog a hug for me, and a bit of cheese.

  • It broke my heart to read this this morning. We know that we’ll probably outlive our pets and that we’ll be grief stricken when they die but we love them with all our hearts anyway. I think it says a lot about us as humans that we can give our hearts so easily to creatures as fragile as our pets.

    I think for dogs, heaven is filled with squirrels who let themselves be caught and then get up and run away to be caught again.

    • Thanks Donna Lee. I think it says a lot about people that we get second and third and fourth dogs after experiencing such loss.

  • I hope he’s gone to a place with millions of dandelions to roll in…

  • Linda Anne

    Zoom and GC – My sincere sympathies. I am writing this through my tears. Logan sounded like such a wonderful fellow. I am sure all of you including Duncan, will miss him terribly. We love and treasure them when they allow us to come into their lives and miss them so much when they leave ours, but we are left with wonderful memories as I am sure you are. He is definitely in animal heaven.

  • Gwyndolyn O'Shaughnessy

    I am so sorry for your loss. Animals are so much a part of our lives; they are love in a fuzzy suit. Logan sounds like a Good Dog.

    We had to let go of THE Gwyndolyn about three weeks ago. I hope life never gets harder than that.

  • Oh, this brought me to tears. I’m so sorry for your loss!!!

  • Oh goodness – such a lovely tribute to Logan, who always seemed like such a sweetheart. Much much love to you and GC.

    • Thanks Roro. Maybe you could give your dog a hug for us. (At first I typed ‘hog’ and it occurred to me that she might appreciate it, but you might think it a bit much to ask of you.)

  • I’m so sorry for your loss. I’ve been there. It’s so, so hard.

    This was a beautiful post for a beautiful dog. It brought tears to my eyes, too.

  • Yes, it’s never enough … they are gone too soon. What a lovely, touching tribute — Zoom and GC, I’m so sorry you’ve lost your friend. {{hugs}}

  • Oh, honey, I am so sorry for your loss. You were lucky to have had one another and it’s obvious you loved one another very much. Hugs to you all.

    • Thank you toni. Logan and GC were so well matched; it was like they were made for each other. They were very lucky to have shared that connection.

  • grace

    My grand dog Rudy was in surgery yesterday. He is only 10 months old. I aged several dog years!

  • Rachel

    I am so sorry to hear about Duncan, Zoom and GC. What a sweet soul. Thank you for sharing him with all of us.

  • Thank you all so much for your kind words and thoughts. GC and I were touched and comforted by them.

    GC has started putting together a book of photographs of Logan over the years, along with all the condolence messages.

  • So sorry to hear of your loss. It sounds like Logan was very much loved and a special part of your family. It’s so hard losing an animal friend…