I was just reminded of the dog I had before Dexter. Queen. She was a border collie that was the pick of the litter. She was on a ranch, and turned out to NOT have enough balls to herd the cattle, so they were going to put her down. My (then) sister-in-law drove her to NY from CO to give her to us. She was the smartest dog in the universe.
But, she was sketchy during storms and didn’t like really little kids. She also hated little dogs.
They say our dogs are our soulmates, and I don’t doubt it for a moment. She could feel all of my feelings. I got her in the divorce.
She was acting strangely one night, so I took her to the vet. Turned out that she had a tumor on her spleen, bigger than the spleen itself. They figured it was cancerous, wanted to do surgery right away and put her on chemo. Chemo. For a dog. A dog that hiked for 10 hours and still didn’t stop to shit. She would truck through any task, and wouldn’t stop until it was done. The meds & surgery would give her 6 more months to live.
6 months or not being able to hike. Or run. Or do much of anything. I chose to put her to sleep and made an appointment for the next morning. I needed one more night with her. That night, she slept on the bed with me all night long. She had never done that before, because she had to constantly keep an eye on the cats. I knew that she knew that she was dying.
Queen was a lot like me. She focused on the task at hand and wouldn’t let anyone get in the way of her work. She wasn’t unfriendly, but she was choosy about which people got to develop a relationship with her. She did, however, shower “her people” with a shitload of love and admiration.
She would have donated her kidney.