Hard To Say Goodbye


A few weeks ago I posted about my dogs in honor of National Adopt a Shelter Dog Month. In the post I mentioned how well our 17-year-old dog Schmoopie was doing despite her age. Unfortunately, that didn’t stay true for long.

17 year old Schmoopie is a gray dog laying down on tan carpet

17-year-old Schmoopie is just chillin’

About 10 days ago she started to take a turn for the worst, and a week ago we had to let her go. It was the right thing to do, and as pet owners that love their pets, it was the responsible thing to do. It doesn’t mean it wasn’t hard as hell to make that call and take her on her last trip to the vet.

As I’ve thought about it over the last week, I realized that I’ve spent more of my adult life with her than without her. She was there to welcome both of my daughters home from the hospital, and fussed over them every chance she got (she would stand on her hind legs to look in the bassinet when they would start to cry and snuggle against them when they were in reach).

Dog in a bright colored kerchief and Steeler collar.

Schmoopie look dapper in her kerchief and Steeler collar.

When we talked about our loss on Facebook we got a lot support, especially for our daughters who couldn’t imagine life without her. A lot of people said we were lucky to have had her so long. I have to say, I’m not sure about that.

Don’t get me wrong, it was a blessing to have as much time with that sweet fur ball as we did, but I think that makes saying goodbye even harder. My husband and I can’t really remember a life without her. My daughters never knew a time without that fuzzy face checking on them. 17 years is a long time to love and be loved in return.

I know in time we’ll stop looking for her when we walk through the house. We’ll stop reaching for her dish to feed her. We’ll get used to saying dog and not dogs. But right now it’s hard to say goodbye.

Schmoopie: friend, snuggle buddy and forever loved.

Lorie’s List for 10/17/2014


I’m bringing back Lorie’s List this week in honor of October being National Adopt a Shelter Dog Month! I have two shelter dogs myself and can’t imagine our lives without them. Schmoopie and Princess have made many move with us (Schmoop moved seven times, Princess six), have been there when we had a bad day and made our lives better all the way around. In honor of all our shelter dogs do for us, I’m listing some of my favorite dog related stories and indulging a little by talking about my two fuzzballs.

17 year old Schmoopie is a gray dog laying down on tan carpet

17-year-old Schmoopie is just chillin’

        • Schmoopie is a 17-year-old terrier mix – that’s right a 17-year-old medium-sized dog who is doing really well all things considered; she doesn’t take meds, can still see fairly well and has selective hearing (she can hear when you talk about food but seems to go deaf when you’re trying to get her to do something). Yes, she slower than she used to be, the arthritis in the hip she had surgery on as a puppy to fix a birth defect slows her down, but she can still do her thing including dancing in the snow and bouncing around the house when motivated (did someone say bacon?). At her last check-up the vet said, “Well she looks pretty good for 12.” When my husband pointed out that was our other dog and that she was 17 the vet said, “Are you sure? Well then, for 17 she looks great!” (Bonus points if you can figure out what NBC sit-com we got our dog’s name from! See below.)
Princess is a brown and black dog sleeping on blankets

12-year-old Princess proving she’s blanket hog

        • Princess is a 12-year-old cocker spaniel mix whose legal name is Pretty Princess (named by our then 4-year-old daughter) – my husband and I decided we didn’t want to be standing out in the yard late at night calling for Pretty Princess so we shortened it. Princess tried to set fire to the house when she jumped up towards the stove trying to get at a 12 inch sub my husband sat there – instead she turned on the gas burner and caught some mail also left on the stove on fire. Luckily I was doing the dishes about a foot away and it was quickly put it out, but we invested in child safety locks for the knobs so we didn’t have any more incidents. She’s redeemed herself by waking the dog sitter and helping to scare away someone trying to get in the door in the early hours of Christmas day a few years ago – she got an extra snack from Santa that year!
        • Pit Bulls in a Photo Booth I’ve been saving this article for just such an occasion! These are some adorable pictures of Pit Bulls that will melt your heart. I don’t know that they’re all shelter dogs, but I’m pretty sure there are a few rescues in the mix.
Dog with the Washington Monument in the background

A cutie from a post on the Fairfax County Animal Shelter’s Facebook page

      • Who Loves A Shelter Dog? A whole lot of us! According to this article, more and more people are adopting pets, and more of them are bringing home shelter dogs!
      • Great Fundraisers Every shelter can use a little help, so consider making a donation to the shelter that helped you bring that furry love of your life home. If you’re looking for other ways to help, Anne Wheaton (and her celebrity nerd/blogger/host Wil Wheaton) have put together another celebrity pet adoption calendar for 2015! It looks awesome, and there are faces you’ll recognize so make sure to check out the video too. You can get all the details on Mr. Wheaton’s blog, or visit teamwheaton.org.
      • Things on My Dog If you’ve ever put something on your dog just to see their reaction, you’ve got to check out Stuff On My Mutt. My kids and I love this site. If you’re looking for a giggle, or ideas on ways to embarrass your dog, this is the place to go. Make sure to check the sister site that’s of the feline persuasion.

Go adopt a shelter dog, it will change your lives and theirs. If you have a shelter dog give them a big hug and an extra snack. They can try our patients, drive us crazy, steal our food when we’re not looking, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

If you have any ideas or if you’d like to Guest Write The List, I would love to hear from you! Send me a note here and we’ll get you on the blog!

17 year old Schmoopie laying on blue blanket

Schmoopie is laying on the porch and enjoying the day as I write this post

Think you know what 90’s NBC sit-com Schmoopie got her name from? Leave the answer in the comments below. I’ll let you know if you’re right, and keep an eye out for the upcoming post, “Did I Ever Tell You…How Schmoopie Got Her Name?”

I would love to hear about your shelter dogs, leave a comment below and/or links to information about your furry friends!