My name is Muffin. I guess I am an old lady. I am somewhat of a miracle. At least that's what my humans keep saying. At 18 years old, with an enlarged heart and liver, blindness and lack of hearing, I should have already passed. I don't accept it. I can still hear a little my ears raise when I hear my name or a loud command. I just can't tell what direction it comes from. When I'm in the car, I insist on being up to the window so I can see. Not that I can, but is make me feel younger and more assured. I don't want to be an old lady. My nose still works just fine and my Mom adds veggies and stuff to my vet food and I also get toast wedges and hard boiled eggs and mango applesauce on occasion. I still love having company, although it does tire me a bit I guess I nap lots more than I used to. I trust Mom she takes me to my vet for regular checkups, makes sure I take all the medications my vet prescribes, supplements those with holistic vitamins and minerals and she won't make me leave before I'm ready. I hear her pray that I'll go painlessly in my sleep when it's my time.
My life isn't as exciting now. I can't do much of what I used to. I can still chase a ball if someone rolls it slowly and directly at me. Then I run around a little while Mom chases me and bury it under a pillow or blanket where she can't get it just like I used to. I'm still proud and don't mess in the house even though it's a long flight up and down steps to get outside. I still don't let other critters mess with me either. Mostly I rest and sleep a lot and enjoy my walks down Commercial Street where I can still "strut my stuff" or a trip to Lowes where Mom lets them give me half a cookie.
It wasn't always like this. I used to have 2 speeds 90 mph and asleep. This is my story…
I was pretty small when I was given to Mom as a gift. In fact she had to sneak me into a grocery store in her pocket to pick up dog food the night she got me. The checkout girl noticed, but I was so cute she didn't turn us in. Actually I was so adorable that Mom would have happily paid for me if my breeder hadn't felt she wanted to give Mom something really special-ME!
I grew up in the country with three really big dogs and two cats. The cats were a little touchy at first, but one of them became my best pal. Even though the other dogs were all 100 plus pounds I made it rally clear from Day One that I was the boss and they respected that. Well actually the two boys did, their mother only tolerated me in short doses. We two had some pretty interesting struggles for dominance in a manner that wouldn't get us in trouble with Mom.
There were lots of vacations in the motor home, trips to the coast and all kinds of interesting adventures right at home. Mom's friends came to visit me a lot and they all thought I was pretty cute, even though they tried not to show favoritism. Life was great. Then my brothers and sisters started leaving. I guess those big guys don't live as long as we more compact versions and the cats were a lot older than me. When my last brother passed away about 5 years ago it was pretty sad and lonely for awhile. I wouldn't admit it 'cause I had always acted real independent, but Mom knew I was feeling a little lonely and not quite as safe without my backup. She thought about getting me a friend for company and I actually considered it but decided that being the only spoiled child was a pretty good way to go and made my feelings real clear.
We moved to Salem and I finally got to be a city dog. Sidewalks are so much nicer than fields when you are really low to the ground. Mom says I'm a dirt magnet and I guess she is right although I happen to think that scruffy and a bit dirty is beautiful. Humans waste a lot of time trying to stay clean. I just enjoy my life. It's not as fast paced as it once was, but as long as I'm loved and cared for, can sniff out old and new smells and wake up looking forward to something every day, even if it's just a good meal and a nice nap, I think I'll stick around as long as I can.
Muffin eventually became so ill that she had to be euthanized at her home. Dr. Surroz put her to sleep on her Mom's lap in her favorite chair. She had a good day that day and passed peacefully with her special person right beside her as always. Muffin was an inspiration to all who knew her including the staff of Vitality Pet Hospital. She had such a zest for life even in her old age and with her illnesses she will be missed.