Lady was a very special girl! She was found as a stray by the Oshawa Humane Society and I was asked by Westies in Need if I could get her and foster till a forever home could be found...so off I went to Oshawa!
After filling out some forms the receptionist went into the back, but when the she came back I completely deflated, I'm not sure what she was carrying in her arms, but that pathetic mass of matted fur and dirt couldn't be a dog let alone a Westie? The girl handed her over and the poor little thing just quivered in my arms. I took her outside and put her on the ground so she could go to the bathroom before putting her in the car. She could hardly stand but she did her business and off we went.
She lay on the front seat and I finally got a real good look at her, dear God what a mess, I couldn't really see her face her hair was about 6 inches long and matted over 80% of her body. I stroked her and my hand came away filthy, but she seemed to need the contact so I kept it up all the way home.
Once I got into Newmarket I made the decision that she desperately needed to be shaved, so I took the chance that my groomer was free. Chantal took one look at her and said bring her through. It was obvious that this poor wee thing had been through the mill… literally, she had lumps in her teats and her vulva was extremely swollen, but it wasn't until Chantal shaved the fur from her head that we realised just how badly she had been treated.
The left eye had completely collapsed like a deflated balloon and the right was swollen with a massive ulcer in the middle of the cornea. We didn't realise how small she was weighing only about 10lbs. It was then and there that I decided to call this little one Lady, because by God I was going to make sure that for the rest of her life she was going to be treated like a lady in every sense of the word.
I got her home and made an appointment with my vet for the following day, Lady eat a little and seemed to be very thirsty, unfortunately every time she drank a few moments later she would vomit. In the end I had to give her tablespoon of water every 15 minutes so that she could keep it down. I took her out into the garden and set her down on the grass, there she did the strangest thing; she kept lifting her feet off the grass as if she had never felt it on her feet before.
That night between crying for lady and swearing that if ever I found out who did this to her I would string them up by the you-know-what's sleep didn't come easy. The next morning off we went to see Dr. Bob; he took one look at her and shook his head. "Bring the poor thing in, and let's see what's going on". After a full exam Dr. Bob felt that she had been "badly used indeed", and was very sick. There was nothing to be done for the left eye and the right was on the verge of collapse. He put her on antibiotics and drops for her eye to be given every two hours. He didn't even want to take blood he felt she was just too sick; they gave me a bottle for a urine test and made an appointment for Monday.
On Saturday I got a urine sample and dropped it off at the clinic, later that day Dr. Bob called to say there were high sugar levels in her urine and to bring her in first thing Monday morning. The rest of the weekend was spent giving her small amounts of water and putting drops in her eyes, and letting her wander around the garden. She lay down on the grass and seemed to snuggle into it. We were afraid that she may get sunburnt so an umbrella was found to put over her. The pampering had begun.
Every time I picked her up she quivered, so I would kiss her three times on the cheek, by the end of the weekend when I picked her up she would lean in for the kisses. On Monday morning off we went to see Dr. Bob again. This time a small amount of blood was taken and it came back with a blood sugar of 39.9!!! The norm is between 5 and 10. He decided to keep her in, rehydrate her and stabilise her obvious diabetes with insulin. I stayed with her a couple of hours then went home with the understanding that they were not to hesitate to call me.
I called that evening and already her sugar had come down to 18 and she was drinking and eating small amounts. The next day I went in and took her out into the large gardens that surrounded the clinic, Lady seemed to love the outside laying on the grass and lifting her face into the breeze. We spent a couple of hours together then back to the clinic. Laura the nurse bought some appetising tidbits and Dr. Bob even went to the local KFC for some chicken, which she loved, and ate it all.
For the next three days I went and took Lady out into the gardens and sat with her on the grass or watched as she wondered around sniffing and investigating everything she came across. I think she enjoyed herself and every so often she would come back to me and lean her face into mine for her three kisses. By Friday Dr. Bob and the girls had done a wonderful job of stabilising Lady and after a quick lesson on how to give an injection I was allowed to bring her home. The van window in the front was open and Lady placed her two front paws on the armrest and leaned out the window. She had the look of pure bliss with the wind in her face. Once we got home she found her way around again and settled down in her favourite place under the shelves.
With two shots of insulin a day Lady seemed to settle in with us, spending most of her time outside in the garden, or sleeping under the shelf. I would offer her small amounts of cooked chicken every couple of hours which she would think about then eat. She was always very gentle, until the morning Buster tried his luck and steal some of Lady's chicken. I heard a little growl and Buster started to bark, when I looked at Lady closely there was a tuft of Buster's fur hanging from her mouth. He got the message; Lady was no push over when it came to her food!
That week consisted of pampering and loving Lady with all our hearts, she enjoyed having the back of her neck gently rubbed and cuddled with her head on my chest. I was confident that the worst was over and Lady was on the mend, unfortunately my optimism was short lived. Thursday night she started to throw up again and lost interest in her food, I called the clinic and took her in the following day. Dr. Bob rehydrated her, and I took her home, where she quietly started to leave us. She had no interest in food or drink and only went outside if I took her. Sunday she slept all day either on her bed or in my arms, she was slipping away and there was nothing I could do.
My heart broke on Monday morning when I took her out for her morning pee and she collapsed. I got a towel and wrapped her in it hugging her to my chest I gave her three kisses; she laid her head on my shoulder and didn't move. I drove like that to the clinic, Dr. Bob was in the barn feeding his animals when I drove up and came out to see who it was. He took one look at Lady then just looked at me, I nodded and we both knew it was time. He went into his house to change and I sat with Lady for the last time in the garden, it was grey and overcast with a slight misting of rain as if Mother Nature knew. Dr. Bob came back and we went into the clinic, I laid Lady on the table and gave her three more kisses on her cheek and I think I felt her lean just a little into them.
The injection was given with me by her side; she didn't flinch or cry out but went to the Rainbow Bridge in peace, taking with her a little piece of my heart and love.
I truly believe that Lady knew that she was loved at the end, it was as if she had struggled all her life, and once she had felt caring and compassion it was OK for her to let go of this world and be at peace, and really all it took was three little kisses Most importantly she will always be REMEMBERED.
I would like to say a very big thank you to Dr. Bob and Laura for all the wonderful care they gave Lady and myself. To Westies in Need for giving me the ability to give Lady the care she needed for the little time she had left in this life, without them she would never have known what love was. My heart felt thanks to you