Jennifer D. Wade Journal

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On Sunday, May 27, I took my dog, KT, to the Animal Emergency Clinic.  I didn't bring her home.  She had been seizing for a good part of the day.  Given her age (mid-teens), recent blood tests which showed serious kidney and liver problems, and a significant weight loss over the past few months, I opted to let her go.

Where KT was concerned, things always seemed to happen rather quickly.  For example, one day in 1999, I went to work and didn't have a dog.  When I went home that evening, I did.  She was the featured pet that day on the station's pet adoption segment, and I adopted her on the spot.

One of the first orders of business was to give her a name.  The people from the shelter didn't know what her original owners called her, so I had to find something suitable.  I looked through a list of names and came across Teagan.  I liked that, but it didn't sound very good by itself.  So, I thought some more and decided on Kinsey, after Sue Grafton's fictional PI Kinsey Millhone.  Put them together and you get Kinsey Teagan - KT.

About three years later, KT went blind.  Again, it happened rather suddenly, over the course of about two weeks.  I noticed her having difficulty jumping onto the couch or the bed, and going down the stairs became an adventure.  She was running into furniture.  I thought that maybe it was temporary, caused by a virus or something, but a specialist said, no, it was permanent and not out of the ordinary for dogs her age.

Despite her blindness, the rest of her years were relatively healthy.  She lost a few teeth, and had some benign tumors, but, overall, she was fine.  It was only in the past few weeks that I really noticed her start to struggle.  She wasn't eating as much, and was more finnicky about what she did eat.  Favorite treats were suddenly being rejected.  At the same time, she drank more water, often lapping it up as though she couldn't get enough.

She also seemed to have lost her bearings.  She got into places that normally she managed to avoid.  Twice, for example, she found her way into the small space behind the washer and dryer.  And, a couple times, I had to free her from among the tangle of chair legs and table legs in the dining room.  I had a feeling she wouldn't last much longer.

Last week, I took her to the vet for a check-up.  He drew blood and discovered the kidney and liver problems.  I was considering what to do when KT made the decision for me.  The seizures left me with no other option.

Thanks, KT, for eight great years.

KT sleeps.  May 13, 2007

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