Max, Penny

Dear Readers,
I have just finished reading Rescuing Sprite. This book touched me in ways I was surprised about. Like Mark, I had to put my male boxer, Max, down in April of 2006. Max was sick for a long time with cancer. He started with a tumor on his right hind leg when he was about 5 and a half. We had just brought home another boxer puppy we named Penny. From the first day he adored her and soon she became “his puppy.” They were inseperable. They slept together in a cooning position every night in “their House.” We refinished our house shortly after Penny came home and under the back stairs we made a “den” which they LOVED! It has a big huge soft bed and they would frequently go in and snuggle together keeping each other warm and company.

After Max was diagnosed with cancer we began the long process of removing the tumors and watching him recover, only to discover another tumor a few months later. But each surgery allowed him to keep going and be with us. He was NEVER unpleasant-always amazing after surgery! What an attitude and I know it had to be uncomfortable. He also suffered with arthritis when he was about 7 and couldn’t sit down in a normal sitting position like most dogs. It never stopped him-whenever he heard the basketball bouncing it was as if the “puppy fairy” threw puppy dust on him and he ran around ignoring the pain chasing the ball.

Finally, when he was almost nine, he became sick to his stomach alot and had many episodes of unstoppable diiarreaha. We would take him to Oradell Animal Hospital and they would give him pills that would stop him for a week or so but as soon as the medicine would run out he would start again. Finally, I knew it was just time. I took him and Penny to our vet after giving him his favorite breakfast, cinnamon toast. We all went in together and they were very kind. As Penny and I sat with Max on the floor I felt panicked and tremendously sad. I realized for the first time I think how final death is. His head was in my lap and Penny, seemed to know-amazingly-and stopped being hyper-my dogs both LOVED the vet’s office-and laid down next to us. It was one of the worst and best things I ever did. Worst because it hurt SOOOOO much and still does! Best because it was probably the kindest thing I could do for him. He would have suffered tremendously. He was almost 9 when he died-not long enough for the kind old guy with the big brown eyes. We still miss him. In fact Penny’s favorite spot in our backyard is right where we buried his ashes. I appreciate Mark’s book, it made me feel better about what I did and leaves me with great memories in my heart of my dog, Max. Thanks for letting me share too.

Jennifer from NJ