Lydia, a large mix breed, came to Bob’s House for Dogs from Chippewa Humane Association. Lydia was quiet, somewhat shy and kept to herself. She preferred to stay off the furniture and was very easy going. She had been hairless on her mid back and had scarred hardened ears due to flea infestation and allergies. She had some mild arthritis and with some good vet care and appropriate medications she became more comfortable. Her hair began growing back, she could get around better and became a happy girl. Then one day a group of people came to Bob’s House to visit and one of them fell in love with Lydia. He quickly filled out an application and was approved.
Lydia’s bloodwork came back with some abnormalities. We were nervous that her new Dad may not want to adopt her, that was not the case. He stated he would follow up with his vet and he couldn’t wait to get her home. So off Lydia went to begin her second chapter with her new Dad. It was a match made in heaven. We don’t know who was happier, Lydia, or her new Dad! I spoke with Lydia’s Dad several times because we’ve been friends for 25 years and I love to hear updates on the dogs once they’ve been adopted. He told me how wonderful she was and how he just loved being with her and hoped to take her to the river this summer and do some fishing . They had daily walks and spent endless hours chilling at home. He even lifted her on the couch to let her know it was ok at his house. He bought a ramp so she could get into his bed at night and get down as needed. He adored Lydia and she adored him.
Then I received a call that Lydia’s Dad had some medical questions. As a responsible dog owner he had taken her into the vet with some concerns. They did a work up and sent them home with some new medication to help her, and things seemed to improve. Within a few days Lydia’s owner noticed a swelling around her neck and face and her appetite had decreased. He took her to the vet for an exam and it was noted that all of her lymph nodes were swollen. With some further testing Lydia was diagnosed with lymphoma. Lydia’s Dad wasn’t ready to let her go yet, so the veterinarian offered some steroids and pain medication to keep Lydia more comfortable. We talked and talked, I suggested wetting her food, using a sling to help her walk and many other creative ideas. Lydia’s owner knew her time was close and asked Lydia to let him know when her time was. Mothers day I received a message from Lydia’s Dad to please call. We chatted for a long time, about her failing health and he just needed reassurance that it was her time. Monday morning Lydia crossed the rainbow bridge with her owner holding her tight. He called me after she was gone. He was able to take the day off work to mend his broken heart. I cant believe how a dog that was only in his life 4 months could touch a person’s soul in such a way. During that call he asked if he could come and spread some of her cremains at Bob’s House. Lydia’s Dad knew Lydia did not have an easy life before she came to Bob’s House, but he knew that she was happy here and knew she was loved in the end. Lydia’s Dad came to Bob’s House the following week and was loved by all the dogs here. He took some of Lydia’s cremains and spread some of them here at Bobs because he knew how happy she was running here with her friends and how because of Bob’s House she was able to be a part of his life too.
Heather Muller, Bob’s House for Dogs Medical Coordinator