Clearly I am on edge after losing Abi. That I am paranoid that something will happen to Charlie.

Yesterday afternoon I was sitting on the couch with Charlie and happened to feel a mass on his neck. I’m glad I got his hair cut or no telling when I’d have found it.

I knew if I called the vet’s office I probably couldn’t get an appointment till next week. So we just went in and waited to get worked in.

squirrel

Once I sat down with him to wait I noticed another weird growth on the edge of his ear.

Dr. Poteet aspirated some of the mass on his neck and will test it. He said he’d let me know today if it looked problematic.

Lordy Pete, what next? Abi got sick and was gone so quickly. I sure don’t want to miss something with my Charlie boy. I am on full alert.

***

I just now caught this squirrel out on the patio. I keep my camera next to the couch so I can capture photos like this before Charlie is aware of the squirrel action.

If he figures it out he’ll be off the couch in a second and barking at the patio door and the squirrel will take off.

squirrel

The squirrels and birds are all over my patio. There are so many things to land on, climb on, and explore.

Much of my daily entertainment is watching them when they don’t know I’m watching them.

squirrel

squirrel

When I get up, Charlie gets up. I opened the patio door for us to go out. Charlie saw the squirrel and the chase was on.

Of course the squirrels are faster than he is. But I figure he’s been eating so much lately that he needs the exercise.

Yesterday evening my neighbor was out on my patio with me as I snipped some chives, tomatoes and a cucumber for he and his wife.

He was looking at all the clusters of green tomatoes and said: “My wife just loves fried green tomatoes.” So I gave him some of those too.

I told him I’d never eaten fried green tomatoes.

About an hour later he showed up at my door with freshly cooked fried green tomatoes.

They sure were good. However I paid for eating them later with acid reflux. So I don’t know about eating them again.

But I’ll be happy to supply them with my tomatoes and other veggies until they move the end of August.

tomato

I will sure miss them. I know I’ve said that many times here. We’ve come to depend on one another. I really don’t know anyone else. It will be another kind of loss.

They’ve been so kind to me since Abi died. They’ve brought me food and called and checked on me.

All it takes sometimes is someone saying kind words to me and I’m crying again.

Oh, how we love them. The pets that are such a huge part of our lives. And oh, how we miss them when they’re gone.

I have cried every day since my Abi died. I’m crying now writing about her. Sometimes it feels like I’ll never stop mourning my baby girl. As though part of me went with her.

“Although it’s difficult today to see beyond the sorrow, may looking back in memory help comfort you tomorrow.” – Author Unknown

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38 Comments

  1. I truly empathize with you, Brenda. I hope the test results will be negative. I just found this on another blog – forgive me if this isn’t the right time to send it.
    The Power of the Dog
    Rudyard Kipling, 1865 – 1936
    There is sorrow enough in the natural way
    From men and women to fill our day;
    And when we are certain of sorrow in store,
    Why do we always arrange for more?
    Brothers and Sisters, I bid you beware
    Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.

    Buy a pup and your money will buy
    Love unflinching that cannot lie—
    Perfect passion and worship fed
    By a kick in the ribs or a pat on the head.
    Nevertheless it is hardly fair
    To risk your heart for a dog to tear.

    When the fourteen years which Nature permits
    Are closing in asthma, or tumour, or fits,
    And the vet’s unspoken prescription runs
    To lethal chambers or loaded guns,
    Then you will find—it’s your own affair—
    But … you’ve given your heart to a dog to tear.

    When the body that lived at your single will,
    With its whimper of welcome, is stilled (how still!).
    When the spirit that answered your every mood
    Is gone—wherever it goes—for good,
    You will discover how much you care,
    And will give your heart to a dog to tear.

    We’ve sorrow enough in the natural way,
    When it comes to burying Christian clay.
    Our loves are not given, but only lent,
    At compound interest of cent per cent.
    Though it is not always the case, I believe,
    That the longer we’ve kept ’em, the more do we grieve:
    For, when debts are payable, right or wrong,
    A short-time loan is as bad as a long—
    So why in—Heaven (before we are there)
    Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear?

    We’ve lost beloved dogs, with one left now in our old age – she’s in her old age, so we try to prepare for her leaving us, too. It’s what we do when we take them into our hearts! Wishing you all the very best.

  2. Hoping that it’ll come back as normal lumps and bumps that come with aging. There are so many lumps and bumps that are harmless. I can relate to how you feel though. This week my Lab, who just had surgery for malignant melanoma and a mast cell tumor in January, had a new lump. This time it is a benign melanoma but the vet advised having it removed anyway because of his history.
    I happen to love squirrels and so do my dogs. Too much… If there’s any wildlife I want to observe, I get up very quietly so as not to raise alarms. If I pop up suddenly to look out the window, there’s a chorus of barking before they have any idea what’s out there.

    1. Yeah, same here. Sometimes just by picking up my camera Charlie thinks I’ve spotted something and he gets up and runs to the patio door.

  3. Good to hear that Charlie is OK. Love the squirrel photos. We watch squirrels, birds and deer from the back porch and the squirrels certainly are the ones who act like clowns. I eat fried green tomatoes about once a year when we stop in a certain restaurant that has them on the menu. I like them just fine, but prefer a juicy slice of a red or yellow one. I love an heirloom tomato called Cherokee purple.

  4. Ben has more tumors than I’ve counted and they are fatty tumors that are common in older dogs. It might just be that. Harmless. Have a good weekend, Brenda –

  5. I think I might cry for two years at least about losing my dear Tavi. Just some little memory or encounter will set me off.

    I sure hope Charlie is alright. My daughter has a friend that she went to school with who is now a vet. She says that almost every dog will get some type of tumor, some malignant, some not. I wonder what that says about our environment. I tho’t that some breeds were more likely to develop tumors than others but she says not, that all dogs or all breeds are at risk. Hmmn, why is this the case?

    Cute squirrel pictures. They are such mischievious little animals. Tavi would always try to catch them when they would come up onto the deck to eat the bird food. But off they would run, quicker than quick and he was left in the dust looking a little perplexed!

    Hope you and Charlie have a good weekend and his reports all come back negative.

  6. I agree with Patrice. When my doggy Jocques got older and was a little chubby he developed a fatty tumor on his back near his neck that I also discovered after he had come back to me from a trip to the groomer. I also had it checked out and the vet did the same thing, took some of it to have tested. Dogs get the same diseases and can also get obese in old age just like humans do. In so many ways they mirror us. Maybe it’s because they’ve been our canine companions for 16,000 years, maybe even longer. We don’t have a relationship with any other animal in the world for that long, not even the ancestors of modern-day cattle. As for grieving for Abby, it hasn’t been that long. Indeed, you won’t ever forget her although the pain will lessen with time. For each of us it’s different. I am still moved to tears when I think of my much loved three canine companions, the last of whom went to the Happy Hunting Grounds in 2004. You’re not unnatural for feeling as you do. I wished a lot more people, millions of them, had your depth of emotion and sensitivity. Maybe the world would be a much better place, particularly right here at home right now, than it is today.

    1. I think pets make people better and kinder. I like to hope it brings the best out in them. I know there are bad apples, because my daughter always gets her dogs from rescues where they’ve been abused.

  7. I do hope you get a good report on Charlie’s test result. I too enjoy watching the antics of squirrels, never seem to tire of them. The heat here in Florida is making things grow like weeds. My Yorkie mix, Dixie, likes chasing lizards in the back yard, but it’s too hot to do much of that these days. Take care, Crystal &Dixie

  8. Like all your readers, I dearly hope Charlie is alright. I know it would be too much for you to have to deal with more right now. These losses can be so painful. I personally find even that word “recovery” to be a quasi notion most days.

    I find even if I’m not physically crying Brenda, I’m always crying in my heart. Experiencing pet loss is not the same for everyone but for some it is completely life altering.

    I find the loss of joy the hardest at times and because joy is so elusive to begin with. We can feel so fortunate when we find joy and know we were blessed but in the same breath losing that source of joy may be one of your hardest overcomings.

    My daughter commented the other day that it’s almost as if you are forced to keep re-inventing yourself. I thought it a good and wise comment but even at that l felt a strong note of rebellion. Don’t want to re-invent I thought. So hard to do and especially when you were so happy right where you were before!
    God bless you … and most definitely Charlie too …
    Congrats on the new job.

    1. The loss of joy just comes along with grief. There is such a hole in your heart that you can’t imagine being happy again. Of course time helps with that. We all go through these phases differently.

  9. For starters, I pray that Charlie will be just fine. And I’m sorry that you are still grieving so hard for Abi. I hope that lessens as time passes.

    Sorry, too, that you are losing great neighbors. In the 15 years we are living here, we haven’t had any. I miss that. I hope it’ll be better for us when we move to AZ next year.

    Cute squirrels. And fantastic photos of them!

  10. Good afternoon Brenda and Charlie!
    I hope the vet has good news when he calls. My munchen had fatty tumors for years and they never turned out to be anything nor did we have them removed.

    Your squirrels are so sweet. I have one that is almost a pet, he comes and looks in the windows if there is no food out for him and then if I do not move fast enough he runs up and down the screen making a racket. He also loves to come and take a nap on the railing of my deck, sometimes he stretches out like he is sun bathing other times he sits up with his tail curled over his head and eyes closed.

    I hope you have a good day,
    Elizabeth

  11. My Lily girl has fatty tumors in a few places – they don’t bother her, and the vet doesn’t think they are worth putting her through surgery for at her age. She’s nearly 16 so we just let her be. Praying Charlie’s are nothing….xoxo

  12. My little Dixie, Yorkie, is about 15 and basically eats, with an attitude, sleeps and poops but if she wasn’t around, I’d be lost. It’s so nice to count on another presence and look after her little body. She isn’t overly affectionate, but I know she loves being held. She’s a rescue and I’m sure she was neglected and mistreated, horrible.

    I can almost hear her saying, “Pick me up, mama, pick me up” . We have our little routines and she stays on the couch in my library while I’m on the computer and beside me on the couch when i’m watching tv. A nice comfort!

  13. Fingers crossed that Charlie is just fine; older pets just seems to have their own issues that come along with age. I hope that’s all it is. but I know how hard it is not to worry. He otherwise does not act sick, right?

    I am sorry you are losing such good neighbors. I don’t know what I would do without mine. She is an awesome cook and makes large quantities and frequently shares with me. He has helped me fix little things around the house too. When my ex left and took the car they took me on errands and even loaned me their car on occasion. They have been so good to me. I hope someone great moves in next to you!

    The squirrel pictures are so cute.

    1. Charlie seems to feel fine. He loves to eat. Abi would hardly eat their kibble dry food. But Charlie with two teeth gobbles it down. I give him about a tbsp of canned food twice per day. All prescription food prescribed by the vet. He likes to eat when I do.

  14. I’ve got my fingers and toes crossed that these growths are just benign cysts for the little guy; he’s too adorable for words. Oh man, I love fried green tomatoes and I hope you can give them another try. My Molly will occasionally chase after a squirrel but has zero chance of catching one, so I just figure it’s good exercise for her. Your patio is flourishing!
    Carol and Molly

    1. It’s become a jungle! I keep going out and trimming things back and in a few days, I have to do it again.

  15. I have had fluids removed from lumps on my dogs too and thankfully they didn’t show any cancer cells. I will hope the same is for Charlie. He’s pretty active and not laying around like he’s tired so I want to think he will be okay. It’s Normal to worry like we do and I fret like you do so you aren’t alone. I know just how you feel about losing Abi and crying. It’s what happened for months with me. Till I rescued another dog which rescued me actually. So keep on petting Charlie and savor all the moments you can with the dog who is thankful to have you love him and care for him.

  16. I do like fried green tomatoes but do not eat them often; I try my best not to eat too much fried food but fried green tomatoes are sure good. I know that you will stay in touch with your neighbors once they move but it will not quite be the same.

    The photos of the squirrel are great; looks like the squirrel is busy checking out the patio. And your tomatoes are beautiful.

    Keeping my fingers crossed that little Charlie is fine. Maybe it is just fatty tissue; my terrier developed a few of those masses as he aged.

  17. Romeo had fatty tumors and most of them were harmless. But then he got the one on his anus and it was difficult to find a qualified doctor to operate on him. Good thing you discovered them, and most likely they will be harmless.
    Sorry for your crying over Abi, but I cried for a couple of years every time I thought of Romeo. You lost your baby, and that is not a little insignificant thing. Of course you will cry, but with time it will not be as often but I don’t think the pain ever totally leaves.

    1. Of course I’m hoping it’s just harmless. The vet doesn’t come in until 1:30 on Thursdays, so I don’t know yet. I called and there was nothing on Charlie’s chart yet.

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