Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Nurse Eddie

One Sunday morning I looked out the front window and saw a large black dog across the street. He was walking slowly in the direction of a somewhat major cross street. I knew something was not quite right so I went outside and got hold of his collar and herded him across the street to my house where he then collapsed on the ground leading up to my front steps. 

I've never had a dog of my own as an adult so I called my friend Kim up the street because she would know what to do. I thought maybe the dog had been hit by a car. I don't know how we did it but we managed to get the dog into her car and off to an emergency vet. They brought out a gurney, placed the dog on it, then took him into a back room to examine him. I had to explain the dog was not mine, I knew nothing about him and that I'd take care of any medical bills until I found the owner. Meanwhile, Kim being an animal lover who has it really bad for dogs, was working in her head on how to adopt the dog if we could not find the owner. We waited nervously for the diagnosis. When the vet came out to talk to us, he told us we had a really, really old dog. Gawd.

So we drove the dog back to my house where he got to stay inside because it was 100+ degrees outdoors. I left a message for the lost dog registry and then called in a found dog description to the paper. There was nothing else I could do but wait for Monday to see if anyone would call about this lost dog.

Monday morning I went to work, Monday afternoon I came back from work......... to find the dog dead beside my parrot's cage. Yes. Completely dead. When I opened the door I could see the dog lying there on the rug facing the TV set but I could also see Eddie hanging upside down trying to get as close to the dead dog as possible and saying as loud as she could.......... 


Oh, it was very Twin Peaks to walk into that.

We eventually were able to locate the owner and he was so relieved to find out what happened to his dog. He loved that dog and although he knew it was the dog's time to be put down that week, he just couldn't do it. He could not believe that Augie (that's what the dog's name turned out to be) managed to get himself up and then go walking (for Augie to be able to walk, you had to put a towel under his stomach and pull him up). The owner was tearful and thankful that he knew what became of his Augie (he and his neighbors had spent that Sunday driving around the neighborhood looking for him) and in appreciation, he sent both Kim and me flowers. And I suppose as an ending to a dog's life, it wasn't too bad. He was facing the television (which I leave on for the birds), comfortable on a persian rug, avoiding 100+ degree heat by enjoying air conditioning indoors and in the company of a bird who expressed her concern the best way she could. She just could not get him to answer back. And I know she tried.


Mental P Mama said...

That is funny and sad all the same. Augie was one lucky dog.

Maria said...

It's usually a very funny story when I tell it out loud because I can tell it in 4-5 sentences. But I then follow it up with a quick epilogue of how Augie was reunited with his owner because once people stop laughing about that silly bird, they then start thinking about that poor dog. When Augie passed away, it was from old age and it was his time to pass. He wasn't hit by a car or dying from something equally tragic. In any case, an old dogfriend dying is a sad, sad thing but for some reason, a concerned loud bird at his side is so not.

Eddie is a very good bird. I remember one time I was really sick with something and was half-sleeping on the couch while she sang me a long lullaby...out of tune and off-key, but still a lullaby and since she knew I could hear her, it was in her quiet voice. :-)

abb said...

Eddie sounds like a character.
Lovely story.

Country Girl said...

It was Augie's time to die, plain and simple. What a relief for the owner to know what happened in the end rather than worry about it for years to come. And the dog died in comfort and caring.

Eddie sounds really cool.

Deedee said...

Ooooh. Sad that he has died, but it sounds like he was done living.
It was so wonderful that you made his last hours nice. Thanks for doing that.

Mair said...

that had me in total stitches when i read it - i could just see the scene you walked in on! I was giggling so hard i had to close the door to my office at the high school...

Twin Peaks, definitely!

I am glad you were able to let the owner know what had happened :)

45+ and Aspiring said...

Touching and tickling tale.

The one about the lullaby was also terrific.

Tami Weingartner said...

It's amazing how animals will take themselves away from their packs/herds to go off and die.