I have often felt that Daisy and I have a lot in common. She likes purple (in fact, her collar is purple) and so do I. She likes ice cream and so do I. She’s eats red meat – and guess what? – so do I.
Today, however, we have now another thing in common. We have both lost our fathers.
The phone call came through this evening. Shaka was ill this morning and with very low blood pressure. The vet thinks he may have had a tumour that finally overwhelmed his system and she said that he wouldn’t recover. There was really no choice but to put him to sleep.
When I told Daisy about it, she went out in the yard and wouldn’t come in for a while. This was most unusual for her, particularly because it had started to rain and she doesn’t like getting wet. I think she understood but some people will say I am anthropomorphising her behaviour. All I know is that I was upset and, usually, if I am upset then Daisy wants to be at my side. This time, I think she needed some time to herself.
I am grateful that Daisy only saw her Dad two days ago; he was a kennel dog and she was in kennels thanks to a business trip. As it turned out, it was their last chance to play together. I am also grateful that for the better part of the last three years, Daisy was able to visit Shaka every week for day care. Her day care arrangements ceased earlier this year when her day care provider moved farther out of town. Still, she and Shaka saw each other whenever Daisy needed a kennel stay or when I massaged another dog at the kennels.
Shaka was a ‘cool dude’ and I’m certain that Daisy inherited her placid nature from him.
Here are photos taken in 2007, at Daisy’s seventh birthday party. We both think he was a very handsome and distinguished dog.
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand