Fifi’s Story

Several years ago, when I was working at a local veterinary hospital, a woman brought in a little toy poodle. The dog was 12 years old and had been used a breder her entire adult life. She carried the dog in because it couldn’t walk. Also, just wasn’t acting right. It turns out the dog couldn’t walk because both of her kneecaps were slipping out of place. She was also in the beginning of a pyometra (infection of the uterus) common in unspayed dogs and frequeently fatal. She also had severe dental disease. At this news, the woman started making noises about euthanasia, or maybe “if I could find a home for her.” “I’ll take her!!” The woman handed her over with no qualms. Even at that time, as sick as she was, I was getting little tip of the tongue kisses. Her name was Snowball. As I held her close I told her she was now Fifi; that she deserved to be treated like Fifi dog for once in her life. Her spay was scheduled for the next day and the doctor repaired one kneecap at the same time. A week later came the dental. The infection in her mouth was so bad that it had eaten away the madibular symphysis, the connection at the chin where the left and right jawbones meet. We extracted ten teeth. Actually, they mainly fell out with a little help they were so loose. I can’t describe the smell.

Anyway, the point of Fifi’s story is that she was grateful. From the time I first held her in my arms she was saying “oh, thank you.” Having Fifi was the most humbling experience I’ve had. Her love and appreciation knew no bounds. Can dogs experience gratefulness, knowledge of lfie saving help? You should have asked Fifi. As for me, I promise you, she was aware. We had Ffifi for two years, until she was fourteen. Sixteen would have been a good age for a toy poodle, but I figure the first twelve years of her life took a toll. Losing her was the hardest thing in the world – I loved her so much – and the time had come when I could no longer help her. When I think of Fifi now, I smile. She became the happiest dog in the whole world. She always had a grin on her face and a smile in her eyes. She had this funny little stiff-legged-wiggly-prance-walk that she would do when she was especially happy. Her tail going a mile a minute. I can still see her, and I smile. I have no doubt that we will see each other again. I’m counting on it.

Holly from VA