Hubby and I want to thank everyone for the kind words and prayers and energy from everyone. Unfortunately, when the vet did surgery yesterday, he found Gidget had several masses, the cancer was in her lymph nodes even, and there was actually a section of her intestines close to perforation from one of the masses. This was in addition to the aortic aneurysm she also had. He called us during surgery with our options, but the prognosis, even if he tried to remove what he could, wasn’t good based on what he was seeing. This was in addition to other things they’d found on the ultrasounds they did on Monday.
We opted to have him close her up and bring her out of sedation so we thought maybe we could at least bring her home one last time to have a couple more days with her. But when he showed us pictures of everything he found, we knew that would have been cruel to keep her suffering, and possibly risk her intestines rupturing which would have been horrific.
They let us have as much time as we needed with her to love up on her and tell her what a good girl she was. She gave us several kisses, and we told her that she’d succeeded in her efforts for wurld domynayshun, and that she was elected in a unanimous landslide and the whole world was now her minun. (That was a running joke we had, that she was going to dominayte the wurld.) We held her in our laps and cuddled with her and talked to her and were able to get my son on FaceTime so he could talk to her, too, and get to see her.
And they’d kept the catheter in her leg from surgery, so they didn’t even have to do another needle stick. As we held her and told her what a good girl she was and how much we loved her, we sent her to the Rainbow Bridge to join our other furbabies there.
We’re devastated, even my dad was in shock because he was here most of the weekend fixing our window sills and except for puking a couple of times, Gidget was bouncy and active and had energy. But she’d started refusing food totally Sunday night and vomited pretty bad. So she’d hid her condition from us pretty well, which the vet told us sometimes with small dogs, it’s almost like they’re cats in that way, so you don’t know something’s REALLY wrong until it’s too late.
She was part of my morning “G-Team” of when I’d get up, she and Grimmy would come greet me in the bathroom and tell me good morning. She was Hubby’s morning buddy before I got up, sitting in his lap or curling up by his desk. She laid with us at night watching TV. She was very expressive and would even stick her tongue out at us. She knew where the cookie jar was and would sit there, staring up at where it was on the counter, even though she couldn’t actually SEE the jar from her angle on the floor.
When we first got her, she was a rescue, and her name had been Gigi. The woman showed up at our door, basically handed her to me, and said HERE. And then…ran. That was in August of 2007, and she was about a year, less than two, at that time. She curled up in a tight ball on the back of our couch and fear growled at us for the first forty-eight hours. No biting, just terrified. I was able to track down a previous owner who said she had separation anxiety and would destroy stuff.
But we worked with her, I took her through training classes, and she was an incredibly smart dog. Even took to agility amazingly well. And one of the first things I did, within forty-eight hours of getting her, was rename her Gidget. (Which she took to immediately, as if she knew she wasn’t a Gigi.) After the training classes, the instructor, who’d seen her go from a growling, bristling ball, to a happy, sweet, loving dog, said she couldn’t believe Gidget was the same dog and wouldn’t have believed it if she hadn’t seen the transformation with her own eyes.
She’d just needed the right home and family. (And I’d tracked down that she’d had at least three or four owners before we got her.)
She was my writing buddy, curled up in her sock monkey bed here in my office every day with me. In the early days, she’d sneak up onto my desk and drink coffee out of my mug when I was out of the room. (I finally caught her doing it one day.)
She was brilliant and loving and adorable. Sweet, amazing. Our first Christmas with her, she watched Hubby decorating our tree. Then we had to go out and he didn’t get her crate locked and we came home to find she’d dragged two strings of lights, a bag of ornament hooks, and a box of ornaments into her crate.
She knew what they were for but just didn’t have a way of putting them together to decorate her crate.
She was my little “ventriloquist dog,” and I’d do the voice for her while “she” talked to Hubby and son (or even sometimes Sir got sucked into it) and it was like she was really talking, her facial expressions and how perfect she was.
She was Hubby’s Buckeye buddy, going nuts and eager to put her OSU jersey on when it was game day, her and Hubby both wearing matching ones. She LOVED dressing up. If I had a Petsmart bag and she smelled something in it, she’d dive into it and pull out HER costume. If you held up one of her outfits, she’d go nuts like she was saying PUT IT ON ME NOW!!!!! My mom knitted her sweaters for when it got chilly and she loved them. It was a fight to get them off her. None of our other dogs enjoyed costumes or “clothes” so we never did that to them.
Gidget LOVED outfits. LOVED them.
And I based Chewi, Rebecca’s dog in my book Chains, on Gidget. The conversations Rebecca has with Chewi are similar in nature to the ones I had with Gidget.
When Hubby had to go out of town to visit his mom in Ohio, Gidget would (if she hadn’t slept in bed with me) rise up on her hind legs and peek at me over the edge of the bed when she sensed I was awake. Then she’d get up on the bed (if she wasn’t already) and always stand there, staring down at me. “Wumman, U are my hooman while my daddy is gone, U must walk me. Get yer ass up.”
At least with most of our previous dogs, we had time to prepare for the end. We knew it was coming, it was still sucky, but at least it wasn’t a gut-punch shock when it happened. We’d had sometimes months to prepare until we could tell it was time to make that heart-wrenching decision.
We didn’t have enough time with Gidget. It wasn’t nearly enough time. We only had just under ten years with her, and she was our baby. I thought we’d have years more with her. We can’t bear to take down her crate yet, and I won’t move her bed from my office.
She was our last dog (now we have the six cats, two birds, and Sheldon the wonder minion tortoise). I’ve never in my life not had a dog, but honestly, right now, I don’t know if I even can. Hubby’s getting up there in years, and with my health, I don’t think it’d be wise for us to get another one, not even a small one. Maybe one day, I don’t know. I know people always say give it time, you’ll find another to love, but right now, no, I can’t.
Right now, our hearts are shattered and I don’t have the energy to do much more than breathe, and that’s only because I’ve loaded myself full of Xanax so I can stay vertical and function. Everything hurts, not just physically but spiritually and emotionally. We opted for private cremation and they make a little ceramic pawprint too, so we’ll get her ashes back in about a week or so and she’ll join all the others on the shelf.
We love you, Gidget. Our little Gidgey-goo, Gidge-midge, and Wurld Domynayshun Dawg. Princess Gidget. Our sweet little baby girl.
I know our other furbabies greeted her with wags and licks when she arrived at the Rainbow Bridge.
And if the Universe is kind, hopefully, one day, we’ll be reunited with her and all the others.