Monday, October 17, 2011

My dead dog.

I dreamt of my dog last night. It has been exactly six months since I made that awful decision to put him down. He was deaf, crippled, and going blind. I had spent the last months of his life in denial of his condition and constantly cleaning up his incontinence. When I went to work I would have to line the floor with newspaper and still would come home to messes. Finally, when all he could do was eat, sleep, and spin in circles, I decided it was time. It took everything I had to walk into the vet’s office and hold my dog as the injection was administered. I would have been okay if all my dog did was go to sleep peacefully, but he didn’t. He whined and cried as the medication took effect. He hadn’t uttered a whimper for two months previous. Finally, after what seemed like minutes, he went limp in my arms and I put him onto the table. I looked at his lifeless body with his blind eyes open wide, and then went outside to sob. It was only the second time in my ten years of marriage that my wife had seen me cry. I spent the remainder of that day throwing away my dog’s things, except for his collar which I put away in a box.

So, why am I telling you this? Because I just wrote that scene into my latest book, turning that negative into a positive. Although my dog of fifteen years is gone now, his memory will live on.