Final Post for Cyrus

I told him there was a squirell in the field. As many of you already know we lost our shop mascot and a member of our family, Cyrus the dog, on the afternoon of Friday, October 14th. He had numerous problems with both the vertebrae as well as the discs in both his upper and lower back.  In addition to this we learned last year after a couple of MRI’s that he also had Syringomyelia, which basically means there was fluid in the cord that had formed sacs and damaged his spinal cord. If all of that was not enough, he also had problems with his heart (tachycardia) this was causing fluid build up in his abdomen. Even at rest when he was not excited his heart was beating over 190 beats per min. That caused him to be panting all of the time.

Despite treatment his problems progressed to the point that he was frequently falling down. Thursday night we called our wonderful veterinarian Dr. Kim Krivit of NorthStar Veterinary Hospital. In spite of the fact that she was not on call, she immediately woke up and told us to meet her at her hospital.  By the time we arrived Cyrus "marking" NorthStar as his property. After midnight.she had the doors unlocked and was waiting for Cyrus. I cannot say how much that meant to Betty Jo and I. Cyrus really liked Dr. Kim. Over the years he has bit a few vets, he really did not like them for some reason. But Dr. Kim and Rob were always buddys to Cyrus. He was a good judge of character.  She did a series of X-rays, ran some blood tests, and some other tests. She let us know how much pain he was in even though he never would cry out.

The next day here at work he seemed okay for most of the day. During the afternoon Cyrus walked out to the field next door. On the way he fell down and he never was able to stand again.  We called Dr. Kim, and within just a few minuites she and Cindy were at our shop. She explained to me that he was in much pain. She also reminded me that the only thing he ever wanted in life was to be with me.  Any of you that know Cyrus know that was so true. If I was leaving my office, he was coming with me. Period.  Sometimes if I wanted to go to lunch alone, I would sneak out the back way.

This photo was taken the morning of his final dayAnyway, without the ability to walk, he never would have been happy. We put him on his bed and carried him over beneath a pretty oak tree. Fortunately my parents just happened to be here at the time so he was surrounded by everyone he loved. One close friend (Rob) was driving in from an hour and a half away with a fractured foot to try to get here in time but unfortunately did not make it.

We gathered around, I lay on the ground and whispered to him, told him how special he was, how much I loved him, and how much he had enriched our lives. The last thing I said to him was “I love you buddy” . Finally it was time. He put his head on my shoulder as Dr. Kim gave him the final shot. Slowly his head got heavier and heavier. Then he was gone.

After he was gone I stroked his soft warm ears and wept. What I was weeping for was not “just a dog” anymore that you could say “just a wife” or “just a child”, he was a family member.  I wept for the years he had been my constant companion. I wept for the time we kayaked together, for all the walks we took, for all the squirrels he chased. I wept for how he bonded so strongly to me the very first day we got him. How he always rode with his chin on my shoulder in the car. I wept for how he “purred” when I rubbed his ears and how he always seemed to know where you were going to be two minutes before you did so he could lay down right there and be in the way.  

Now,every time I go through a door I don’t close it immediately because I am so used to him just being there right behind me. Knowing if I did close it, he would soon remind me with a loud bark. The big goofball never did learn how to whisper. If he “talked” to you, you would know it. He was LOUD. As we drive to work, the car seems empty, at work the shop seems empty and at home our bedroom seems empty. Most of all, my heart seems empty.

 I have had many dogs over the years, several Great Danes, two German Shepherds, and others, but none gave me the pleasure that Cyrus did. He was a true credit to his breed. For 6 years he was my friend, a true and constant companion. Some people believe that all things in life eventually balance out. If that’s true, then proof of all the pleasure he gave us is felt in the misery and grief Betty Jo and I feel on his passing.

This photo was from before we adopted Cyrus from Southern States Mastiff RescueI would like to thank all of you, his “Facebook Friends”, many of you know him through visiting us here at Image Graphics. As you can see from his photo album he often took photos with little children that more often than not were fascinated by the “big doggy”. 

There have been occasions when Betty Jo and I were on vacation, and we arranged for him to be brought into work because he was more comfortable here with people than home alone. Upon returning we found more people had been here to visit Cyrus than to see us for work. I thank you all for that. 

With time perhaps we can find it in our hearts to have another Mastiff, but no dog can ever replace Cyrus DaDog. He was the best.

In conclusion I would like to share one of my favorite quotes:

"Dogs are our link to paradise. They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring--it was peace."
Milan Kundera


Rest in peace Cyrus - I love you buddy!



PS. Experts reccomend talking about your loss to help get over the grief of losing a pet. That is part of the reason I wrote this post. They also recommended a photo album or collage. I will be doing that and posting it on YouTube. When I do I will let everyone know through his Facebook page.

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