Friday, September 02, 2011

Six years ago, a most handsome, elegant and refined fawn colored greyhound came into our lives. He was wonderfully proportioned with nary any scars from his racing career. He had come from Ft. Myers and it was quickly apparent that he had been well loved all of his life. He always tried to get into one's lap even though he had long ago outgrown that possibility, but he took to standing over one's legs and pressing close to one's body. He loved chest rubs that lasted 15 minutes and always wanted more. He could charm the devil himself. He was a bit of a sneaky thief, stealing the last two bites of my sandwich off my plate when I went to answer the doorbell, and quick to sneak a lick off a plate when you weren't looking. He wasn't satisfied with mere kibble, he wanted left-overs added to it. He took to the couch and love seat, snatched pillows when he could thinking they were large throw toys. He was a lazy greyhound and only ran when the other greyhound got him going. He was content to be retired and a beloved pet and companion. He was even tempered and delighted in having the underside of his chin and neck stroked. He had one small flaw - he didn't like being disturbed when he was lying down and would growl and lash out. One greyhound rule is, never disturb a sleeping greyhound. Two greys we had didn't like to be disturbed and two don't mind at all. You just don't know with them. Jett, had been returned to USADOG after a family adopted him even though the organization didn't think it was a good match, the family wanted Jett. Understandably, because he was such a good looker. They had a small child who couldn't resist petting a sleeping greyhound and Jett growled and bared his teeth. The family returned Jett. How fortunate we were to take him home and give him the home he deserved. It was hard to ever be mad at him because he oozed charm. He moved with grace, light on his feet and with his size, his long tail carried elegantly. He charmed us with his good looks and endearing personality. He was easy to live with and a joy in our lives.
Yesterday, Jett crossed Rainbow Bridge. His cancer had tired him out, his leg wound oozing and bleeding with a stench that even daily cleaning could not erase. He wasn't eating much even when tempted with rice, and canned dog food and left-overs, although he greedily munched on Milkbones.
He was becoming thin and it wouldn't be long before he wouldn't have the strength to go out or stand up. His eyes were sad and said, "I had enough." He had problems getting comfortable lying down and even with some pain medication to ease the pain in his leg which he favored some, the delight was gone from his eyes. I knew it was time. I knew I couldn't let him waste away and lose all dignity. It was just a matter of days.
Thankfully, he waited until I returned home and was so joyed to see me. I know he missed me and Momma's rubs, hugs, and kisses.
And so, LH and I, had our beautiful beloved Jett put to sleep, and spared him some really awful last days.
I suppose that is the salve to my grief - that we spared him a few days of additional misery and that each day, each year he was with us, was a gift and grace and gave him a second chance at life. He was trusting and good with the doctors and all that he endured the past year and three months - two surgeries and recuperation. It's just that cancer couldn't be eradicated and his wound after this last surgery couldn't ever heal properly. I know we did the right and good thing by him and it eases the hurt just a little.
He graced us with his elegance and beauty and goodness and I am forever grateful. He rests in my heart and now bounds across heaven with Earl, Baruch the Beagle and Benny.
Perhaps, eventually, we may get another grey. For now, it's just LH, I and Jazz - our wild child grey, who has lost his buddy. Now, he'll get all the attention and all the left-overs!
Thanks, Jett, you were beautiful inside and out. Love you forever.

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