08 Dec Dog Statue
I am watching the aging process progress at a rapid rate for Pickle. He is sixteen, an octogenarian Jack Russell. Sometimes he stands looking bewildered and we wonder what is going on in his head. He is deaf enough to ignore the postie, the slam of the front door and fireworks. His sight is obscured by terrier whiskers and cataracts. He bumps into furniture, the glass partition at the vets, and occasional lamp posts. He is on his ‘last legs’. All four are stiff. He falls up steps and is grateful to be carried up full flights of stairs. I notice with anticipation the collection of memorial thank you cards on display at the vets for the animals who have recently expired. For me the death of a pet is painful because I load them with so much love. Each pet becomes a recipient of my boundless affection. In return they are loyal, generous, reciprocate in their own way, and accept the weight of my emotional projections. It is precisely because there is only body language between us that their death is for me so hard to bear. I can’t explain the process to them, we can only feel. For now, Pickle’s shiny black nose twitches at the smellorama of our daily outings, and he lifts his muzzle with joy to take the air on bright days.