Monday May 13 was the day I had to go back to the place where Chandi died. It was exactly two months until what should have been her fifteenth Birthday.
I had made an appointment with my Vet for Grace to be checked over. I had checked her for umbilical hernia, jaw alignment, discharges, signs of worm infestation, and felt her pulse before I brought her home, but I wanted to make sure her heart was okay and no sign of a murmur or anything else.
The farmers that bred her hadn’t bothered to find out if she and the other nine puppies they were selling were healthy. I guess it would have eaten into their profits – if you don’t spend anything on the puppies you breed other than feeding food that has a reputation of being the worst on the market you’re going to make a packet! They were only interested in money – the type of home was irrelevant.
It was what I was expecting when I made the decision to look at the puppies in the first place, so I wasn’t surprised, just saddened that breeding pups (and any animal) is just seen as a way of making money. At least Grace landed on her feet when I picked her – I hope she feels the same way too…
Arriving at the Vet’s made me feel so upset. I carried Grace in – no vomit in the car after a 16 mile journey – and sat on one of the few chairs in the tiny reception area. Grace was on my lap, lying on her back, legs in the air with me gently stroking her soft pink tummy.
Helen, the lovely, sensitive vet nurse was busy manning reception, but she came to sit next to me when I came in. The tears were rolling down my face as I cuddled Grace – the memories associated with the place were too raw and fresh and they all ganged up on me in a rush. I couldn’t hold back the tears. Neither could Helen.
Chandi enchanted everyone wherever she went – even people who confessed to ‘not really liking dogs’. She was gentle, sweet, perfectly behaved in any situation, and all around her was an angelic aura of loveliness. There are no words that anyone can say to me that mean anything at all, but tears shed over Chandi’s death, by someone other than me, touches me in a way that is so utterly pure and comforting.
Grace has an inbuilt knowledge of human emotions, even as an eleven week old puppy. It seems to be as finely tuned as Pepper’s and Chandi’s was. How could she know that I needed comfort when she heard me crying? Why would she understand the difference between crying and laughing? (Although those two can be inextricably linked even in the most dire of situations.)
Whatever the explanation, Grace knew and understood and would run to me, climb my leg until I sat on the floor, trying to get to my face to lick my tears and share the sadness. I tried to hide the majority of my grief from her, but on occasion I would break down in front of her, particularly when I called her Chandi instead of Grace.
Grace was very good standing on the table while the Vet listened to her heart, checked her pulse and felt her all over. Thankfully no problems were detected, which was a relief.
I had already decided not to vaccinate Grace – both Pepper and Chandi had been vaccinated before I rescued them but I never gave them a single booster vaccination – there is too much information about the damage vaccines cause and I had read it all and made an informed decision. My Vet agrees with me.
If you are still being told by your vet that yearly boosters are necessary to ‘maintain immunity and protect your dog’ then you are being misinformed. Please take a look at Canine Health Concern, one of many wonderfully informative sites on the internet dealing with canine health related matters, not just vaccination. You might also like to read more truth here.
I am using Homeopathic nosodes with Grace, along with the organic, species appropriate raw food diet (that I talk about a lot due to it being so very important), and some well-chosen supplements, to help keep her immune system functioning in peak condition. No decision is ever without consequences: if I vaccinated her and she becomes ill I would have done the wrong thing (and all manner of illness is now being attributed to vaccine damage – it’s not just an immediate reaction after being vaccinated that is a problem); if I don’t vaccinate and she becomes ill I will have again done the wrong thing.
Damned if I do, and damned if I don’t? Both my heart and head tell me I’ve made the correct decision for Grace by paying close attention to every aspect of her health and diet, and putting in the effort to always maintain these vitally important elements.
After the consultation, I was very glad to be back out in the fresh air and heading for the car with Grace happy in my arms. I drove while she snoozed. At that point I didn’t realize that today was the day Grace conquered her car sickness once and for all, whether travelling on a full, or empty stomach.
The journey home was uneventful and the car was quiet apart from the hum of the engine. I hadn’t been able to listen to music of any kind since ‘that night’. I still can’t.