In Praise of Elder Dogs

This blog is created in celebration of the elder dogs, of any breed, who've touched our hearts. You are invited to add your own reflections, or, if you wish, track the progress of your own elder dogs. ("Elder," BTW, is defined here as 10 years or more, except in breeds known for shorter lifespans, such as the Great Dane.) Send your stories and photos to me at branta(at)

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Location: Hunt, Texas, United States

I've been privileged to share my life with five unforgettable Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. This blog was inspired by Cooper, my first, whose indominatable bright spirit triumphed over his limitations. Every day of his life, till the very end, he woke joyously, happy to greet the day. I would wish the same for all of us!

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Another Interesting Day?

Looks like today (Sunday) will be another interesting day. After a day in which Cooper got up spontaneously and walked, twice, he slept till about 1:00 a.m. I woke to hear him panting loudly and rapidly and picked him up from the bassinet, which sets next to my side of the bed.

It wasn't clear what he wanted or where he wanted to go. He drank some water, but became more agitated and began barking loudly. I set him lying down on the cool, tiled bathroom floor, where he quickly evacuated the contents of his lower GI tract in a single shot. It was quite a bit, but fortunately landed at some distance from his body so cleanup was less onerous than it might have been. Some attention to the floor, a quick hygeine bath for him, and we were done.

For a moment there I was alarmed, because as my beloved black Lab lay dying years ago, he too lost his bowel contents in a mighty display of involuntary muscular activity. So with Cooper I naturally wondered, "Is this it?"

Well, apparently it's not. It's almost 2:00 a.m. and Cooper is sleeping soundly in my comfy wheeled office chair next to the hard wooden one upon which I now sit on at my desk. I, of course, am wide awake.


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