Sheba crossed the Rainbow Bridge friday, 10/26/07 at 11am. She was 13.5 years old. I think Mike and I are reeling in shock since this was rather sudden. Sheba's been feeling poorly on and off since tuesday night. On tuesday evening she suddenly stopped walking, she could only take a few steps before collapsing and refusing to get up. On wednesday we called the vet but that evening she started feeling a lot better and by thursday she seemed to be almost back to normal. She was alert, walked around outside, and even fetched the ball a couple of times. Unfortunately by thursday evening she was suffering again, her stomach was a bit bloated, she didn't eat dinner, and seemed a bit out of it. We made a vet appt for fri afternoon, but took her to the emergency vet on friday morning because she had gotten significantly worse.
Sheba had a cancerous mass in her spleen that had ruptured and was leaking into her abdomen. The vet guessed that it started around tuesday but the body tried to clot the leak which is why she was feeling better on wednesday. After doing an ultrasound, they found a mass of tumors (hemangiosarcoma) on her spleen, major part of her liver, and on her abdomen covering. Even if they removed her spleen and patched her up, another mass would burst within a few weeks putting her back in the same situation. We had no choice but to let her go.
We were able to spend time with her until we were ready. She seemed more alert and curious about her surroundings. She even gave me a couple of kisses while we were all together and then it was over. I have no regrets, not even about waiting until friday morning because it gave me that much more time to spend with her.
I miss her terribly. I see her ghost everywhere I look. I see her lying on the ac vent cooling off, on the couch with her front legs hanging off and eyes watching for a hint of food, and laying on the dog bed with her head hanging off the end. It's strange not to hear her tail wag in the morning when we come downstairs or have her follow me into the bathroom.
I've had Sheba for almost 12 years, longer than I've even known Mike. Right out of college I wanted a dog and my sister's friend had a lab she could no longer take care of. When I first got Sheba she was the perfect little robot. She didn't beg, she heeled without a leash, didn't got into rooms without permission, extremely submissive--the perfect dog for some. It took me over 2 years to turn her into the mercenary spoiled diva she became. Everyone loved Sheba and she knew it. She had a wonderful face, great personality, and she was gentle with everyone. She shared her home with her brothers, Quinn then Max, and all the fosters that came into her house. Sheba was responsible for several small kids getting over their fear of dogs and learning to love dogs.
While all our dogs are special and wonderful, she will always have a special place in my heart.