The Worst Birthday Ever/Good Bye Chomsky

I had planned to pop over yesterday and leave a list of 35 things about being 35, but ended up not really feeling it after the day I had had. Let me back up.

Our 7.5 year old lab, Chomsky, has had a few ailments the past month, like some arthritis struggles and a bad ear infection, but nothing that we couldn't manage. Monday he had a slight upset stomach, but was acting okay, so we just chalked it up to "one of those dog things." Tuesday, he was fine, except maybe a little less into food and a tiny bit sleepier than normal. But still, no red flags (he even happily took a short walk). Wednesday was a different story. He was sick to his stomach again and incredibly lethargic- I called the vet and took him in that afternoon, putting all my Thanksgiving prep on hold (I had actually made an appointment for early that evening but then called back and insisted they get me in then). After over two hours at the vet we weren't really sure what was wrong- they gave him some fluids and anti-nausea medication through an IV, and gave us a round of antibiotics. His heart rate was quite fast and he also had a fever. They took blood that showed his organs were fine, but that there was definitely an infection that was altering his platelet counts and some other levels of the blood. 

We went home and he was absolutely miserable. He ended up getting sick again and it was probably then that he ended up aspirating. I talked to my sister, who is a vet tech, around eleven that night and she agreed with taking him to an emergency vet, which I did. I had to practically carry him in and they took him back in a gurney- it was heartbreaking. The vet was very concerned, since his blood pressure was half of what it should have been and he still had the symptoms from earlier. They did an x-ray and it showed he had pneumonia, due to aspirating when he got sick a few hours before. She wanted to keep him for a day (it was 2:30 am at that point) and run more blood. She promised she'd call me and sent me home to get some rest.

I finally crawled into bed and managed to go to sleep by 4 when they called back with the blood results, which indicated he was septic. His blood pressure had gone up a little bit, so we decided that we'd keep treating him and hope that he'd get better. Two hours later, at six, they called back and told me his heart was stopping- by the time the vet joined the call twenty seconds later it had stopped and he was gone. I then drove to say my good byes, settle the bill (yup, I had to pay almost $2,000 for my dog to die, plus $600 earlier in the day to our regular vet... if your dog dies shouldn't they call it even? Sorry, but, just... damn), and make arrangements. 

And then I left. I went to the store to pick up rolls, since I knew I wasn't going to make them from scratch after all. I went home. I remade my pumpkin pie that turned out horrible from the day before. I finished cleaning. I put the turkey in. I curled my hair and put on seventeen pounds of makeup to hide my exhaustion and sadness. 

Our guests were definitely a welcome distraction- it ended up being eleven of us total, so my house was noisy, lively, and I had plenty to do. I'm so glad we opted to keep to the hosting plan (not that I would have ever in a million years canceled, I would have just driven over all the food to my sister-in-laws or something). I once again successfully proved my ability to compartmentalize. 

So, that was my 35th birthday. And Thanksgiving. 

Luckily, there will be other birthdays and other Thanksgivings (I hope, anyway...). There will never be another Chomsky. He was the best dog I've ever had- he was so sweet, protective, and handsome. He was incredibly patient with Sawyer and won over everyone who came into our house, even if they confessed to "supposedly" not being "a dog person." The whole thing is even more difficult since we lost Cordie, our golden retriever, just six months ago. We've always had a dog, so there is a huge void in our home right now. This is always inevitble when you own a pet, but he was too young to go. I was confident we would have a few years left with him, at least, but boy was I wrong. 

I guess that's the biggest take-away from this. Things can happen so fast to totally turn your life upside down. While I'm thankful my human family members are healthy and well, my heart hurts for my sweet Chomsky.


  1. I am so, so sorry to hear about your loss. Chomsky sounds like an amazing dog, and you sound like an incredibly caring and attentive person, who loved him very much. Lots of well wishes to you in this difficult time.

  2. I'm so sorry to hear about your lost and how unexpected it was, too. To not even be prepared and have time to say properly goodbye is horrible and I wish it could have ended better for you. Chomsky (and Cordie) both sound like they had a really wonderful home to live in, though, and they were very lucky dogs to have you as their family! I hope, after healing and time, you're able to add a new doggo into your life, if that's what you want, and provide that loving home for another lucky pupper. But if not, I hope the memories are wonderful and time helps them to hurt less!

  3. I'm so sorry to hear about Chomsky. I always loved seeing pictures of what an amazingly patient and sweet dog he was.