…and then there was one

Our dog Maxi.
Our girl Maxi. February 28, 2001 to September 26, 2016

One week ago today we said goodbye to our dear old Maxi girl, she was almost 16 and it was the hardest decision I have ever had to make. We have had Maxi since she was a tiny pup with huge ears and a dangerously happy tail. As a pup she loved to pull washing off the line and dig up plants, destroying garden beds and leaving unseen holes in the lawn. We called her the ‘Diggingest Dog’ after one of my favourite childhood books. As an adult Maxi loved going to the beach and bouncing through the waves, she still loved digging holes, we have several still to prove it. She had a phobia of storms and refused to walk through doors or gates if she thought there was any chance of them touching her. Her snoring was loud and so was her bark, she kept many a salesperson and religious door knocker from our yard. I loved her soft fur and her friendly, happy face, she was a beautiful, sweet natured girl.

Maxi had been struggling with arthritis for a few years yet still loved her walks and always had did a happy dance at dinner time. The memory of her goofy smile and dancing feet as she impatiently waited for dinner always brings a smile to my face. Recently her struggle intensified, her evening walks reduced in number and distance until she was restricted to sniffing around in the park next door. She loved that park. Hubby and I were preparing ourselves for the inevitable however it happened sooner than we thought and it makes me sad that we did not even get a chance to take her to the beach or let her eat all of her favourite foods.

I was not ready but I don’t think you can ever be ready to make a decision that will end the life of someone you love. Maxi was in pain, she was distressed after falling and not being able to get up again, it was heartbreaking and it was time. The vet came to our house and we took Maxi outside to her favourite spot in the yard, the spot where she can see everyone coming and going. It was a beautiful day, she had some roast beef and with her head resting on my lap I said goodbye as the tears rolled down my face. I kissed her forehead and closed her eyes, it was peaceful and quiet. Maxi was gone, she was no longer in pain. I sobbed for hours.

One week later and I still can’t believe she is gone, her absence all too real when I enter the house and see her empty bed. Maxi had been with me for a good chunk of my adult life, she was with me through many ups and downs, sensing sadness and knowing just when to rest her head in sympathy on my lap. Such a beautiful, sweet natured dog, everyone who met her fell in love and she loved everyone. Bundy still looks for Maxi, he is not anxious but will seek her out and he occasionally sniffs her bed and checks for leftovers in her bowl. I do not have the heart to put her things away, it makes our house feel empty and I’m still not ready to say goodbye.