Friday, October 3, 2008

Good Bye, Clarice -- Our Special Girl


We lost Clarice yesterday morning. I have been writing and rewriting this posting for two days, and I am still not sure I have the right words for what I want to say.

First, I apologize to our regular readers who come to this blog every day, expecting a new post. I have not been faithful with my posts, even understanding the importance of writing regularly, daily, about our babies. We have been so preoccupied with trying to find the magic cure for Clarice these past couple weeks, that I have just not been able to focus. I am really sorry.

Second, I want to thank the many, many people who read this blog and have offered helpful ideas and suggestions and prayers for Clarice. Many of those ideas were tried.

Clarice fought valiantly up to the end. The day before she died, we took her back to Dr. Stern yet again. She had lost more weight and was very weak. Her white cell count was still climbing.

One of our friends in rescue had said that perhaps Clarice had stomach cancer, and Dr. Stern said that could well be it. That would certainly explain the spiking white cell count and her inability to keep anything in her tummy.

Clarice kept her IV in this time, right up to the very end. We were able to keep her hydrated and give her vitamins and glucose in her IV. Our good friend Adele Mirshak connected us with a doctor and veterinary consultant in Illinois who practice holistic medicine for dogs. Laura Loder send us an entire box of holistic treatment materials for Clarice.

And Ricky and I both continued to hold Clarice and talk to her and stimulate her. We took her for short walks around the bedroom several times a day, believing that it was good for her to keep exercising.

But at the end, we both told her, separately and individually, that we loved her and that we did not want her to continue to suffer for us. We told her it was ok to go now if she was hurting, and we would always love her and feel her special presence with us.

We wanted her to live, if there was any miracle that could make that happen. She had a special little dance she did when she got excited, and Ricky always called Clarice his little hula dancer. We wanted so much to see her dance again.

But we also wanted to give her permission to leave, if that was the best thing for her. We loved her too much to ask her to keep suffering here.

Clarice left us at 10:37 yesterday morning, October 2. The pain and sorrow of her loss is etched indelibably on our hearts. This is a hurt that never ends.

Jay Hellerich, executive director
smiling dog farms
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wharton, texas

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