I’ve already shared this news on Facebook and Twitter, but couldn’t bring myself to blog it until now.
Our little Max died Thursday morning, July 14, 2016 at the age of 14-15ish. I was his for one month short of thirteen years. He chose me on August 11, 2003 and I brought him home a little less than a week later.
Let’s just say that Max wasn’t the most obedient dog in the world. He was super-smart and had a mouth crammed full of giant teeth – two factors which sometimes lead to trouble. After a very bumpy first year, he finally trusted that he had a forever family, and settled down. He fiercely loved WM, Ollie, and me and we loved him back.
I miss his grumpy growls. I miss his fangy smile. I miss his expressive ears. We three are gutted.
Max was diagnosed with Diabetes almost 2 years ago, and went blind shortly after that.
We took a trip to Seattle a week ago. It was the first trip WM and I took together since Max lost his vision in late 2014. He and Ollie were taken care of by an ace team of petsitters and pet snugglers. When we came home Wednesday night Max was happy and waggy. The next morning, he was gone by 10:30am. This only means to me that he waited for us, and I am grateful for that.
“You gave him many more years,” the veterinarian said to us Thursday morning as she glanced over his very thick medical file and I shakily signed the last paper. “You did good.”
No, Max was the one who did good. Max was with me through some of my lowest lows in those early/mid 2000s and snuggled with me as I rebuilt my shattered life. He welcomed WM without reservation and later became a fantastic big brother to Ollie. After his bumpy start, he warmed up to being pet by strangers, and was his most gentle with children — many of whom called him Toto on our walks.
Max moved house 5 times. He took road trips to Michigan. He jumped into the lake at Knight Park. He always had to pee. He liked mustard.
In a hotel room in Michigan. Smaller than my overnight bag. The chair was to help him get on the bed with me.
A few months after we moved into the house, WM and I were working in the garage and the backyard. We inadvertently left both the door to the garage AND the garage door itself open.
We were looking at our ravaged yard when we glanced toward the street and saw a brown terrier walking in the middle of it. “That poor dog looks a lot like Max!” I remarked.
Max managed to navigate to the garage, through the garage, down the driveway and across the street. Dog owners of the year, right here. We were outsmarted by a blind, diabetic, geriatric dog who by then spent about 20 hours a day asleep.
And that, right there, was Max in a nutshell.
Maximus Decimus Meridius, Commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions, my loyal mini-direwolf and tiny fangy beast: you will be missed by all who knew you.