Rest In Peace, Sweet Bandit

Last Thursday our 35 pound heeler mix, Bandit, became ill. We took him to his vet on Saturday. She said he had a 104.5 degree temperature, his left knee was out of place (she popped it back in) due to probable arthritic changes, but nothing showed up on xrays. Diagnosis was probably a UTI. She gave him 3 prescriptions and said if he wasn’t better to bring him back on Monday. We never made it back. He steadily got worse, more unstable on his feet, more painful in different places and in obvious distress. By Sunday morning we knew he was in real trouble. We took him to the local animal emergency center. By the time we got there he was barely breathing, and was drooling; he’d had a seizure before we could get him in the car. They took him right in and started an IV, ran blood tests and told us they thought he either had meningitis or a brain tumor. His blood looked good and the fever was gone. There was no definite diagnosis because there was no neurologist at their clinic or on call. While we were deciding what to do he had a grand mal seizure; instantly there was no decision. We had to euthanize him. We told him goodbye and held him until it was over. We’d just lost the best dog in the world.

DH rescued Bandit and his 2 sisters from a shelter to keep them from being euthanized. We found homes for the sisters but couldn’t part with our sweet Bandit. He loved every rescue critter that passed our doorway for the next 9 1/2 years of his life, including a 92 pound mastiff that tried to kill him. He let puppies crawl all over him and lick inside of his mouth just because they wanted to taste him. He’d never move. He protected and stood guard over all his Chihuahuas and any other animal we fostered. He was always the big brother, the guardian, our residential alarm system, DH’s fishing buddy, and everyone’s best friend. More humans than us cried Sunday. I want to remember him like he was and pay homage to the Good Boy I always told him he was. I don’t have room for all the pictures I took of him in 9 1/2 years but here’s a few I like.

Bandit’s Shelter Photo

Puppy Bandit

In the Chihuahuas bed

Bandit with Daddy

DH and his fishing buddy

 

 

Bandit’s 8th birthday in the car

The Chihuahuas are so quiet.  They don’t know why we are so sad and why we cry from time to time.  They don’t know why their brother isn’t here; Mimi roams the house looking for him.  Bandit was always Mimi’s favorite even when he had no time for her.  She would rub her body against him and her tail would wag so fast.  She wanted to play with him but didn’t know how to begin.  She’ll be 16 on January 30th; we’re hoping this doesn’t push her into leaving us, too.  Our normally happy, slightly noisy and messy energetic pack is on hold, silent but on guard watching us for cues.  I keep expecting him to come in, put his head in my lap and look up at me with those liquid brown eyes with all the love in his heart there.  I wish that could be again.

 

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