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3 October 2002, 01:00

He’s walking funny these days. Not funny ha-ha, but funny strange. It’s hard for him to get around. He’s a very, very old dog. He’ll be 12 in October. I’m worried about him, and I think the worry has manifested in my subconscious as worried dreams where the vet notifies me that he has to be put down, and after a lot of crying and fussing, I gave him the death pill and rocked his head in my arms till he fell asleep and died.

After all this time, after all the miles I’ve traveled, after all the crust that has formed on my jaded soul, just thinking about his passing reduces me to sobbing.

He’s lost some weight, and is tremendously more crabby than he’s ever been. But, aside from the reluctance to move around, he’s seem to be doing adequately and doesn’t seem to be in pain. He doesn’t pee in his sleep, like Afga did (and got expensive hormone therapy to fix it) but he does walk around the backyard peeing. It must be liberating to just let go like that. Sometimes I’ll find a zig zaggy little pee trail on the side walk to the backyard.

He’s also now very neurotic about his bears (stuffed toys) and put up no pretenses toward Milo, our newest and dumbest dog – he hates him.

I love this dog. I would compare my love for this dog with anybody else love for their children. I saw on Comedy Central a comedian who mocked people who love their pets enough to call them their children. Its sad that he can’t imagine having… well…. pet love? And its sort of insulting and sad that people who love their pets so completely as that are looked upon as kooks or nuts. I think its a testiment that one can love so completely, even if it is an animal. I’m happily surprised that I can. It is reassuring that I can.

He’s still got that light in his eyes, even though his beautiful jet black hair has turned into a dry ratty afro that looks like it has a bad, bad streaking job done to it. He is turning into a light brown dog. Its almost like the collie gene in him has suddenly decided to switch on, and turn the ends of his black hair red and blonde.

He’s my best friend. And there are times that I owe it to him that I acknowledge and celebrate all that he’s given me, my best friend. It’s hard to see him struggle, and its hard to know if I’ve done my best by him, and I do so much want to give back just a little of all he’s given me.