Thursday, January 28, 2010

Lacey was my first "baby"

How can I even put into words my feelings towards Lacey. I'll start off by saying she was our Belgian Sheepdog that we got after being married for a few years. We had been trying to conceive for several years till John suggested we get a puppy. Once we got her home, I'll never forget thinking "no way can a baby be more work than a 12 week old puppy!!" She was a little black fur ball, we nicknamed Lacey Bear because she looked like a little bear cub. She had her moments for sure, destroyed a couch, carpet, school books, and countless amount of household items. But she was our baby still, that's the wonder of owning pets, you realize you have a greater capacity to love more than you ever thought.

Kids came and she didn't know what was going on, them approaching her was not her favorite thing in the world. Especially when they started to become mobile. That reminds me of another lesson she taught me, how important it was to instill certain values in my kids. That they had to respect her boundaries and how to show affection in a respectful manner. And I'm so proud of them now for what animal lovers they've come to be.

Lacey was incredibly loyal to me and to John. We could be in a room of 100 people and she knew dern well who her mommy & daddy were.. She just tickled me pink every time we would play hide & go seek. Her ears would go up as I yelled to her "where's daddy?" and she'd be off running. Found us every time of course!

She was & we were so emotionally attached that for years we never took a vacation because we knew she'd look for us no matter who we left her with. The thought of this now just breaks my heart. I mean for Pete's sake anytime we went to my moms house God forbid if John had to go to the car for something she would go crazy jumping up trying to look out the window to see where he went. Then, she'd just sit there by the door and cry until his return.
We finally decided when Maddie was 2 1/2 years old that we could venture a vacation to Busch Gardens VA. Under much hesitation we left her with my Brother in-law for a 4 day trip. She didn't eat the whole time she was there and was very distressed. It's hard to rationalize that going on a simple vacation with your family could actually do harm to your pet. And I'm sure she was sick all along, it's just that I can't help the feeling that I failed her in some way...At first I figured OK, she lost some weight from not eating for a few days, she'll be fine.. months went by and she never gained the weight back. It was only a year later that we discovered that Lacey had kidney failure and she only had a few months left to live. "What, she's only 6 years old, this can't be happening, not to MY Lacey?" Boy I never cried so much in my whole life! This is insane, how can I be so distraught over a dog! She's just a dog! A dog whom I loved more than words can say.

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