Monday, October 19, 2009

Bubba the Boxer...

Daddy Brown and I moved into our 1st home 8 years ago. We closed on our house, moved our stuff and the next day, went to the Boxer Rescue in Brentwood and adopted 2 boxers to be apart of our family. Bubba and Sissy Brown were our "children" for a number of years before we produced our two legged children. When we adopted them, we didn't get a lot of history. We knew Bubba came from Oak Ridge and Sissy came from Clarksville. They were estimated to be around 3 and 2 years of age. If this is true, they are around 11 and 10 now. This is an extraordinary lifespan for a Boxer. Typical lifespan for a Boxer is about 8 years.

They have seen many years of the good, bad and ugly. I remember when we brought them home and they were so skinny and unsure of this new palace they had been brought. They were afforded the benefit of sleeping in our bed, and eventually had their own couch in their own room. During the day, we would put them in the garage, because of the MANY mishaps of leaving them in the house. For some reason, Wednesdays were the day they would trash the house, eat plummers putty, string VHS tape all over the house, bust into 100 rolls of toilet paper and paper towels, as if it were snowing and the list goes on and on.

Since we now have actual children, Bubba and Sissy are treated more as dogs than children. Daddy Brown built our fence about a year and a half ago and so now they have more freedom and the opportunity to roam outside than ever before. They don't get nearly the same tender loving care as before, and they LOVE the Brownies.

Just over the last year, our Bubba has really started to show his years. His muzzle has began to gray, he has slowed a bit, which has made him a little overweight. Now, I fear, he has began to have little strokes. Today, he had his 2nd episode and it scared me. The Brownies were down for their naps and Sissy started barking in the backyard. Of course, I ran to the door to let them in and reprimand them for barking. Sissy came running up the steps and into the house, but Bubba couldn't find the steps. Although he was standing right at the foot of the steps, he was temporarily blind. I ran down the steps and put my arms around him. He was sniffing and was low to the ground. Shaky and unsure of his surroundings, he used his sense of smell to walk it off. I walked on one side of him and Sissy walked on the other. We walked all of the backyard until he finally came out of it. I considered picking him up and bringing him inside, but having a dog as a child that had seizures, I wasn't sure if he would lose control of his bodily functions, as she did, so I decided just to keep him in the backyard for the time being.

As quickly as it went. He finally saw the steps and came inside. My heart is broken. I know what is to come in the cycle of life...and I dread it. I have really only had 2 prior dogs in my lifetime and both had to be put down after many years of joy they brought to our lives. Bubba and Sissy have a special place in our family. I called Daddy Brown in near tears to tell him Bubba had a little stroke. Unfortunately, there isn't a lot we can do for him. But I can hold him, I can talk to him and pet him more often. I can give him GOOD food for as long as he remains with us. I decided this week that we have been relatively good with feeding them just dog food and making sure they were healthy and happy.

In what might be his last year or two, I'm going to let them enjoy life to the fullest. Tonight for dinner, we had pork roast and green beans. Rather than throwing the leftovers out or putting them up in the fridge, it was a feast for Bubba and Sissy. The Boxer wag of the "nub" was all the thanks I needed. So much joy packed in such a little non-human, unconditional love giving, four legged friend...our Bubba the Boxer.

Update 10/20/09...he is still Bubba. Today, the door bell rang and it was a new FedEx lady, who didn't realize she didn't need to ring the doorbell. Not thinking about the dogs being inside, I opened the door with Big Brownie to accept the package. Bubba pushed his way in front of Big Brownie to get between the lady and Big Brownie. He started barking and growling in defense of his family. Maybe old, maybe slow, but ever the protector!!!


Team Martins said...

What a sweet post to your Bubba! I love the update at the end... that is one loyal firstborn you have there. I hope he stays healthy and strong for as long as can possibly be!

FarmWife said...

Our weiner dog, Andrew, had seizures occasionally. They were caused by back spasms & they scared me half to death. I can imagine how you felt when he had his stroke. We had to put Andrew down this summer. It was horrible...he was nearly 12.

I hope Bubba hangs in for a few more years to keep an eye on all hsi Brownies!