the best impromptu decision i’ve ever made…

was when I adopted this sweet little dog Chloe in 1996.  She was originally named Donny and that simply didn’t fit her.  So I changed it the minute I got her home to my college apartment. I’d always had dogs and so it seemed to make sense when my friend and I were sitting over lunch and we thought…’let’s go get dogs!”.  When you are 20 – that sounds like such an easy, carefree decision and you don’t imagine that it’s possible that this animal could be come a part of you, a lifetime responsibility and one of the greatest connections you’ll ever have.  But that’s what happened.

Chloe really was the best dog I could have asked for.  She didn’t really bark or beg, she wasn’t a ‘licker’,  she did fairly well on a leash, she knew how to sit, shake and stay (I probably could have taught her more but she loved those 3 tricks), she traveled well in cars, everyone loved her and for the past 3 years she’s sat right by my side in my office at home.

I’d like to think Chloe lived one of the greatest lives and had some of the greatest adventures.  She use to have legs that were springy like bunnies.  She’d jump up and down to get your attention.  She use to chase and taunt geese at a local pond in college (and much worse as one of my roommates might remember).  She jumped into trees like a little squirrel, she’s jumped on a dinner table on Thanksgiving day and ate the dark meat on the turkey,  she’s sneaked an entire loaf of bread one time (that really freaked me out as I discovered she ate the entire thing).  She ‘ran away from home’ once – but ended up sitting on the front porch about 30 min later.  She knew where she was meant to be.

Over the past few years I was convinced she had 9 lives like a cat.  She was hit by a car (not going too fast thankfully), she threw herself out of a car, she was misdiagnosed with throat cancer and I was told she had a week to live (that was 3 yrs ago) and this past year has been touch and go with various ‘old dog’ issues.  But nonetheless she kept trucking and convincing us that she was perfectly fine.  She wasn’t ready.

Yesterday however, she was ready.  I now understand what people mean when they say ‘you’ll know when it’s time’.  She was so tired, had no appetite and simply walking was becoming her biggest challenge.  We would carry her from room to room and for the first time in her life she became a lap dog.  Over the past few days she would just lay in my arms and rest.   If I could have found a way to keep her here with us forever – I would have.

Yesterday (8.18.11) at 6pm we had an in-home vet visit and she was peacefully put to sleep.  It was hardest thing I’ve ever done and I miss her more than words can say.

I don’t keep a journal or anything like that – just this blog.  And this morning when I woke up and Chloe was the only thing on my mind,  I wanted to talk about her and look at pictures of her.  So I thought I’d make a place for her here on my blog so that I could come back and see her sweet little face.  Below are some of the many photos I have of her (Most are iphone photos so pardon the quality).

I could list so many words to describe Chloe – but SWEET is the biggest one that comes to mind.  She was just the sweetest dog and I’m thankful for every single moment I had with her.

sweet dog chloe sits in house at horseshoe bay

the image on the left was about 5 years ago – the image on the right was about 3 months ago.  in the same spot, different perspectives at my dad’s house.little chloe dog and her big brown eyes and blonde eyelashes

seriously could you love those blonde eye lashes anymore?chloe dog loved the lake and car rides

Chloe didn’t get to go out on the lake that often but she loved it when she did and oh my gosh did she love car rides!!!chloe dog makes her bed and sleeps peacefully

I adore this photo of her.  it’s one of the few times she jumped up on a bed – we caught her sleeping and we just couldn’t bear to wake her.sweet chloe dog sits at front door and with her moms

The photo on the left I love.  During pretty days I would leave the front door open sometimes to get some fresh air and she would just sit there.  She knew life was not nearly as good for her outside that door.  The photo on the right is last fall.  Angela loved her as much as I do and I know her heart is missing little Chloe too.

Thank you Chloe for living 19 wonderful years.  I’m thankful to have had 16 of those with you by my side – you will be missed (1993-2011)

  1. […] our newest member of the family…My sweet Chloe would have loved her!! (well at this stage she might have been slightly annoyed by her […]

  2. Lacey R says:

    Jenny–I’ve been busy and thus haven’t been out visiting in the blog world as much, but had to make my way to your blog today and was super-impressed, as always, with all of your latest work! Love your style, processing, etc.! Also, I just finished reading this post and looking at your photos of Chloe. What a lucky dog to have had such a long, wonderful life filled with love!! I can only imagine how much you miss her. Thanks for sharing her with us here on your blog!!

  3. Susan Portwood says:

    Thank you for sharing your stories and pictures of Chloe, she has a most special place in heaven. We’ll remember her with much love.

  4. Oh Jenny – My heart goes out to you. She was so sweet and now she’s at peace and is so thankful for the life you gave her. You did the right thing. I’ll try to write more once I stop crying.

  5. Amy Lucy says:

    I’m in tears for you and your sweet Chloe. I’m so, so sorry for your loss. I’m so glad you were able to share all those years with such a special best friend.

  6. I wanted to share this with you.. I give it to my clients when they are faced with having to face saying goodbye… the author is unknown.

    The Last Battle

    If it should be that I grow frail and weak,
    and pain should keep me from my sleep,
    then will you do what must me done,
    For this, the last battle, can’t be won.

    You will be sad I understand,
    But don’t let grief then stay your hand,
    For on this day, more than the rest,
    Your love and freindship must stand the test.

    We have had so many happy year,
    You wouldn’t want me to suffer so.
    When the time comes, please, let me go.

    Take me to where to my needs they’ll tend,
    Only stay with me till the end
    And hold firm and speak to me,
    until my eyes no longer see.
    I know in time you will agree,
    It is a kindness you do to me.

    Although my tail its last has waved,
    From pain and suffering I have been saved.
    Don’t grieve that it must be you,
    who has to decide this ting to do;
    We’ve been so close, we two, these years,
    Don’t let your heart hold any tears.

  7. Oh Jenny I am so sorry to hear about your loss. It is so hard to lose a pet we love so dearly. I am so glad you have so many wonderful memories you can keep alive!

  8. Ali C says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss of your precious pup. Your post is such a beautiful tribute to her and is inspiring me to take more pictures of my two furry babes. May your memories of her bring you comfort.

  9. kara jo says:

    aww, what a sweet dog:) They really are the best. Love this sweet post.

  10. Dad says:

    Chloe will be missed by all of us. She was always at your side, your best friend for half your life. Not only did you see her through a lot of life’s challenges, she was supporting you through quite a bit of your own. You’re right the best description is Sweet, she knew she was loved and in the right home at all times. So be happy for her and also for you being lucky enough to have had her.

  11. Sara T says:

    I am so sad for you gals. My deepest sympathies. Chin up.

  12. Aimee says:

    What a wonderful tribute to your sweet Chloe. I know you will miss her very much but she is in doggie heaven now enjoying her peace.

  13. Nicki says:

    i am so sorry about the loss of your dog :(, very sweet post.

  14. brenda says:

    I’m so tearing up right now…the love you have for her is what everyone should have if they have pets. She obviously had a wonderful life Jenny and you gave her a home she was proud to be a part of….you saved her and she saved you. Remember that!!

    I posted this on your facebook page but I’ll posted it here in case you don’t see it or any of your readers would like to use it because it helped us so much and it keeps our memory of our first fur baby alive. We had Tubbers (our border collie) cremated and decided we wanted to bury him in the backyard. Gracie was about 5 at the time and we wanted her to remember him but not be to sad he wasn’t with us anymore…in sorts a way to celebrate him too. So we all picked out a little tree at a local nursery and we planted it over where we buried him. We call it “Tubber’s Tree” and every time I look out our kitchen window I remember him and how at our first apartment we was tortured by a mockingbird and he would lay flat as a pancake on the ground because of him, how he would play the game hot and cold with us and peek out and see where we hid his toy, how he would sneak up in the bed when his dad wasn’t home and I would let him stay there, how when we went out to the farm he would instantly jump out of the car and head for the horses and when he would get hot, jump in the water container for the horses water to cool off and how when he had a cat come up to him, he would stand perfectly frozen but his big bushy tail would wag a mile a minute. It keeps his memory alive and I’m so glad we did it.

    Hugs to you all!!

  15. rebecca says:

    So sorry for you. Sounds as if she had 16 wonderful years with you. There is nothing quite like the loyalty and companionship of a dog.

  16. Elizabeth Tombs says:

    I love your stories of Chloe! Made me tear up. Such special relationships are to be cherished. Thank you for sharing.

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