This past Sunday night I posted on facebook that our dog, Mason, passed away. I know this was sudden news for friends, it was for us too.
Thanksgiving is hosted each year by my husband’s aunt and uncle in Maryland. This year, since relocating to Charlotte, we decided to make the trip up there to spend the holiday with family just as we have since before my husband and I were even married. We knew we couldn’t take Mason and were so grateful when our good friends in the neighborhood offered to look after him. We felt he would be happiest at home rather than a kennel and typically we’ve had to hire a dog sitter in the past. We felt bad leaving him but knew he would be just fine, or so we thought.
We had a wonderful fun-filled time with delicious food, drinks, and I kept up with my yoga visiting my old studio (sweating with yoga sculpt- thanks Nanci!) and even trying a new place (and dragging my husband with me :)). All was going well except for hearing updates from our friends about Mason.
First he wasn’t eating his dog food. We figured he probably missed us and told our friends to supplement with people food which seemed to work… until the day before we were set to leave to head back home. On Saturday our friends said he wouldn’t get up. We called the vet and after a couple of conversations we all decided there wasn’t much that could be done that day since there didn’t seem to be any real emergency and we would be home to take him in ourselves the following day for blood work. However when checking on him again our friends tried to physically get him up and he really couldn’t stand. At all. So we had them take him to the vet. After blood work it was pretty quickly determined that Mason had a very rare autoimmune disorder that the vet had never seen in large breed male dogs. Mason’s prognosis was poor and treatment would be expensive with absolutely no guarantees. We opted for them to go ahead and give him a blood transfusion and steroids so he could at least live so we could all be together again. The treatments went well and had immediate positive results so Saturday night we were feeling hopeful. And hey Auburn beat Alabama in the Iron Bowl- luck was on our side!
Sunday morning we got right on the road to head home and see our pup. We called for an update and got heartbreaking news. Mason’s red blood cell count was back to extreme low levels, they discovered a mass on his spleen and he still couldn’t get up. They still couldn’t explain the reason he couldn’t get up and said it was either depression or a blood clot and if it was a blood clot there would be nothing they could do about it. I cried silently off and on the whole way home. We couldn’t get there fast enough but of course everyone else was traveling too and a normally 6 hour trip took 10 hours. We drove straight to the vet and once we saw Mason my husband and I just knew it was all over. They wheeled him in on a table and once Mason saw us his tail thumped as it wagged and then he just laid his head down and closed his eyes while we all pet, kissed, hugged and cried on him. We said tearful goodbyes and my daughter’s sobs broke my heart as did my little boy’s questions. He wanted to stay at the vet to see Mason fly up into heaven. I took the kids with me and Jay stayed with Mason until the end. He was and is heartbroken. We all are.
3 years ago we said goodbye to our dog Maggie and now with Mason gone too we are all quite lost. It’s the first time we’ve ever been without a dog since Jay and I started dating. I keep looking for dog fur to vacuum up. The floor and my dyson even seem lonely. I know that sounds silly but oh the dog hair I’ve spent much of my adult life complaining about is now POOF gone so suddenly! Jay looks for him when he gets home out of habit and catches himself thinking he is going to walk him before bed. The kids point to where he slept on the porch and talk about how much they miss both Mason and Maggie.
Mason had never been the same since losing Maggie and recently we had been contemplating getting another puppy. Not only for us and the kids but really for Mason- to bring a spring back into his step. I talk to the kids about how Mason and Maggie are reunited in heaven and Maggie is chasing squirrels and they are both swimming. I am sure Mason is back to annoying the heck out of her cleaning her mouth all the time and I just know they are sleeping snuggled up right now. We miss them both and will always love them but I find solace knowing they are reunited.