Happy 16th Birthday Kalayna

Asleep on the couch 11-28-08

My dog turned 16 today.  She celebrated by napping on her blanket on the couch where I put her, a day like any other.  She hasn’t jumped onto a couch in maybe 18 months; she can still jump down and hasn’t broken a hip yet, although the landing often looks a little rough and painful on the slippery wood floor.  Last week when I wasn’t home, the man of the house said that the dog woke up and announced her desire to get off the couch — “Bark!” she called out, one single bark — and then jumped anyway before he made it to the living room.

She often sleeps by me on the sofa when I’m using my laptop.  (The picture of us both on the couch is from last November.)  If she gets antsy and seems like she’s done napping, I’ll place her safely on the floor.  One time last year she seemed like she would sleep for only a few more minutes then get up, and I said, “I might as well put her down now” as I lifted her to the floor.

“You might as well put her down now?” he repeated.  It became a joke: “Well, we might as well put her down now, I’m about to watch a movie and now’s as good a time as any…” we’d say.  “Has the dog eaten dinner?  Yes?  Might as well put her down now, I have a thing later tonight anyway…”

I’ll be making the actual, non-joke appointment in a few weeks, probably the first week of October.  He might have to make the appointment, actually, since I’d probably sob through the call with the poor receptionist.

September 11, 2009. Tags: . Dog, Pictures, Words.


  1. Mom replied:

    Awww. Happy 16th + one, little black dog with the white tip on your tail. I usually have to go in person to make the appt. so I can do the check ahead. No way to write the check at the time as I just want out of there. She,and you together, and I with her babysitting for those 4 college years and going into classrooms, had a good run. I doubt I will ever understand the life being limited concept…that it ends.

  2. Victoria replied:

    Such a bitter sweet time. Hang in there and trust your heart. xo

  3. Sandy replied:

    I am fascinated with the thought and love put into end-of-life choices for our pets.
    Put in a larger context, how do we deal with humans? Would we ever “put them down” as we do animals? Perhaps we should not “put down”pets but give them hospice care (morphine, etc.) as an alternative, as we do with humans. One thing for sure, “life” has a beginning and an end for the individual, if not for the species.

  4. Carol replied:

    Amy, it is a painful decision to make, and hard to let her go. Kalayna has been in your life for many years. I know Steve and others will be there to support you when the time comes and we’ll be sending good thoughts your way.

  5. Mom replied:

    The countdown is soooo difficult this week, but a way to be able to say goodbye to each day as her last Monday, etc. arrives. But I’m at peace, in theory, with the concept she had a fantastic life, as you enriched each other’s. I am confident they hear our silent thank you’s and understand.
    For me, it was very important that Lassa meet all 4 of you, and she did live a few months past Mark’s birth, altho Kalayna lived one month more than she. And I still ask Lassa to escort and comfort and be there as other dogs of mine pass over to the other side, and it feels like she does.
    Hang in there, thoughts going out to you both
    Love, Mom

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