On February 9th we said goodbye to our girl Quincy.
It was a heartwrenching decision to make. We had watched her health deteriorate. We didn’t want her to experience immense pain. We didn’t want her to be in a crisis situation. She was having breathing spells that were scary for her and us. She was noticeably slowing down.
It was the hardest thing we’ve ever done together (my husband and I). I’m writing this several months later and we still miss her every single day.
The day that we took her in, she chased a red squirrel under the red shed and was frantically trying to get at it. She was so much herself and yet not whole anymore. Cancer robbed her of her golden years. Cancer robbed us of her golden years. Cancer sucks.
When we took her to the vet, she was glad to be there. Her tail was wagging. But, she knew. She had known the time was coming for over a month. While she had brief moments in time that she sparkled with her former youthfulness they were fewer and further between and every day that passed we ran the risk of having her in a crisis situation at a time that we would have limited options for how to help her. We knew it was time. People ask how you know. I thought that I would say goodbye to my dog on a day that she wouldn’t be able to lift her head to my lap, or walk outside on her own. But, because of the nature of her cancer, that wasn’t meant to me. Every vet told us that ultimately it was going to be up to us to make the decision if she was to have any dignity.
In the end, it was a never-ending eye infection that took our girl from us and put us over the limit in what we were willing to put her through. We tried everything to improve the eye infection, but because the tumor was blocking proper drainage it was only going to get continuously worse. It bothered her every minute of every day. But, she still found a way to run and play and show us love. She still had her mind. She still had her fierce independent streak. She was still our dog.
I didn’t want this to be a sad story about the mechanics of her death which was sad to the max. Instead, I wanted this to be a tribute to my friend so I have to get back on track.
Mighty Quincy, Queen of the Ozarks. It is the name we gave you before we even loved you. You weaseled your way into our hearts and became our beloved weasel girl. You taught Steve how to love a dog. You loved us so well.
I remember the first day you came home with us. I remember holding you in the car, bringing you into our yard. Your little ears were a mess and you were filthy dirty. I fell in love with you right away, from the first moment you stepped on your little ear. From the first day you were at our home, you were independent and free spirited.
Steve was none to sure about a dog when you came to our home. He worried about you on the couch and on the carpet. You were hard to potty train. You knew you were supposed to go outside, but you were pretty sure it was our job to figure out when.
I remember when you learned to lay down and how excited you were to get treats put between your paws just for lying there. That was when your training really became effective. You learned that it could be fun to do what you were asked.
Some things I didn’t have to train. Quincy was always gentle with other dogs. Never hurt another dog or person in play. Quincy would lay and let children play doctor with her. She was gentle with dogs smaller than her and bigger than her, with kids and adults. She was a gentle, caring soul.
She was also a firecracker. She could run and give chase to squirrels, rabbits, ground hogs, you name it. She dug up and flung moles from the ground. She once chased a flock of ducks through a snow storm. Yep, you heard that right. She would bury a bone either outside or in my dirty laundry.
More than anything though, she loved me and Steve and she listened to us. She knew so many words. She knew words for specific toys. She knew people’s names and other dogs names and would notice when they were brought up in conversation.
She had dog friends and people friends. Her pack was bigger than just our little family.
She was so special and I miss her so much. I believe in God and I believe that God loves me. If it is true that God restores what was lost to us, then I believe that God will restore my relationship with this dog. It was one of my most important and influential relationships in my life and yes, it was with a dog and maybe that is a little pathetic, but she made me a better person. She taught me patience and self control as much as I taught them to her. She gave me unqualified, unconditional love up until the very moment that she took her last breath and passed from this earth.
Her little pawprint is embedded on my heart and I will always miss her.
Rest peacefully, weasel dog. Until we meet again.
Mighty Quincy, Queen of the Ozarks
January 18, 2008 to February 9, 2017