Goodbye my Sweet Bruce
I have had so many people contact me, telling me how touched they were by the story of Bruce, my yellow lab. Unfortunately, about a month ago, Bruce earned his angel wings.
For those who are not aware of Bruce's story, here it is.
We purchased Bruce through a breeder in January 2012. We was a teeny tiny peanut. Within 4 days of having him, he was hospitalized because of parasites. The next couple of months he was at the vet more times than I can count. We was not gowing, going through spurts of not eating and lost his vision (temporarily) at 4 months. We were faced with putting him down, or going to Tufts Animal Hospital to see if they could figure it out. My husband and I couldn't even think about putting down a 4 month old puppy. At Tufts they discovered that he had a liver shunt. Basically his liver was being bypassed to process his waste and sending the waste product directly into his main artery. He was responding to meds and fluids and was able to come home a few days later. He had to go on a low protein diet and be on numerous meds to control his condition. His site came back and he was for once a thriving happy puppy. In May 2012, he had surgery to try to correct the shunt. He made it through the surgery and was seeming to be on the mend. We starting weaning him off of the meds and gradually increasing the protein in his diet.
That August, he was bit by a tick and had lyme disease as well as become anemic. He had trouble walking and refused to eat again. We put him on high doses of antibiotics and he started feeling better within a couple of weeks. After this set back we was doing great, able to take a 3 mile walk, playing like a puppy should.
Until December 2014 Bruce seemed to be doing great. We got him up to 50 lbs! He started refusing food, so I started making a homemade low protein food for him. He absolutely loved it and couldn't get enough. Once I started making the food, end of December, he seemed back on the road to good health. He had a check up at Tufts, just to check the liver levels and monitor his progress. A couple of weeks before his check up, he started throwing up his food and refusing to eat again. I did so much research on the best food for dogs and started changing his diet. He was slowly wasting away. We went into tufts thinking we needed to up meds and maybe change food again.
Well the good news was his liver was holding it owns. The bad news was his kidneys were failing. There was nothing they could do. They kept him for a couple of days to get fluids in him. He was down to 37lbs. His levels stated to improve, then shot back up again. We brought him home in hopes to keep him comfortable and prayed for a miracle. Well some days he would eat nothing, others I could get him to eat a banana and a handful of cheerios. He still got excited to see us, followed me around like a little shadow and would occasionally play with our 3 year old lab Rosie.
On April 7, 2015 after not eating much for a couple of days, we decided it was time to let him go.
Bruce loved taking rides in the car. He had his front paw hanging over the side of the car out the window like he was Joe Cool! I could see people smile and laugh when they saw him hanging out the window. He was such a love. He was definitely MY dog. It is funny how a dog attaches to one persona in a family. If I was in the room, he only wanted to be with me. He would lay all over me and stare at my husband if he dared sit next to me!
There is not a day that goes by that I don't miss his sweet face. I know he is not suffering anymore and look forward to the day we are reunited. We have had many dogs but Bruce was by far the best. I loved all of my dogs but he had a special place in my heart.
Bruce and Rosei
Bruce at 3 months Bruce at 1 1/2 years Bruce at 2 yrs old when he was the healthiest
Keywords: Mansfield photographer, dog portraits, dogs, liver shunt, pet photographer, sick dog, yellow lab
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