We picked her out of a big litter of little squirmy, Jack Russel puppies. She had a brown circle right on her backside, which stood out on her white fur. I remember asking the woman whose dog had the litter, if they shed. She looked away, and said "no". HA! Small white needles of hair have become my daily cleaning chore here. Liar!
We took Sophie home, and she ate her way through her puppy hood. Lost were pillows, and beloved shoes, that I spent too much money on in my frivolous single days. We took her everywhere with us. We even gave her a Christmas stocking. In the winter, she had a red jacket we put her in...after all...she was our baby. (She ran like the wind each time we broke that jacket out)
After we got married, (and seriously considered Sophie being involved in the wedding) we still babied her. When I went to the hospital in labor with Olivia, I even took a photo of her along with me, to concentrate on through the excruciating pain. (Didn't work!) I even called my newborn baby Sophie a few times on accident. She was my first little commitment to caring for something.
But then suddenly, the baby came home, and Sophie, who had been our baby, became the dog. She had never been the dog. Suddenly, she was banished from rooms. Walks became less frequent. She got yelled at when the baby slept, and she decided to go nuts when the UPS truck barreled down the street. Treats, and runs at the park weren't a daily event anymore. Now when we went for a walk, it was with our new shiny baby, in her stroller. Sophie left at home.
That is how it has gone for the last decade or so. And now, Sophie, with her whiter snout, and rounder belly, and inability to jump like she used to, is really turning a corner. This week, she was very sick. So sick, that David and I didn't think she would make it through the day. Even worse, was that a trip to the vet was just something we couldn't afford this week. It made me so sad. I sat and pet her, and felt just awful. Awful. I made a wish she would hang on.
So far, so good. She has returned back to her old, crabby self. Snarling at the girls if they come too close, and barking at every deer and chipmunk, like she has never seen one before. Her appetite is back, and she is back to her post, standing underfoot, while I prepare meals.
I feel relief that she is OK, but frustrated that if it comes down to groceries to feed the girls, or a canine blood test, the choice is not good for Sophie.
I hate that more than I can say.