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Kasha's Story

This is Kasha the day her ears stood up in 1989 at
13 weeks old. 
 


 
We brought Kasha home on the Saturday before Mother’s Day in 1989. She was the cutest puppy, with floppy ears and paws so big that she was tripping over them. Over the years, and after the "puppy" years, Kasha settled into our lives, becoming the best friend and protector that anyone could ever ask for.

Kasha was quite large for a female, weighing 87 pounds at 3 years old. But her size never slowed her down. That is, until January of 1999. After returning home from a 5 hour car ride, Kasha seemed to be favoring her hind leg and she seemed stiff and uncomfortable. We had the vet examine her and found that she had arthritis in her back end and the laying down in the car for a long period of time, made her stiff.

Over the next few months, Kasha had some good days and some not so good days, but being the stoic dog that she was, never led us to believe that she was in any type of actual pain. By April, the limping started to get worse and the vet put her on a new anti-inflammatory medication that didn’t agree with Kasha’s stomach, so after a few weeks, we had to take her off of it and go back to buffered aspirin. The vet was very helpful in trying to find an anti-inflammatory medication that would agree with Kasha’s stomach, but nothing seemed to agree with her. 

After returning from a long weekend, I noticed that Kasha’s limping had gotten considerably worse, but she still greeted us at the door and showed no indication that anything worse than arthritis was bothering her.

At this time, along with our vet, decided that it was time for Kasha to visit an arthritis specialist, which we did. And on that day, we found out something that we had never imagined could happen to our dog…Kasha had bone cancer, that is what was causing her to favor her back leg.

The specialist was very compassionate about the situation and offered us three options. One was to euthanize, another to put her on chemotherapy, which he didn't recommend at her age (Kash was ten), because it would make her sick and she wouldn't really be enjoying life, and the third was to amputate the leg. He would not let us make a decision until we let it sink in and really gave it some thought. He told us to call him after the weekend. That weekend we cried, talked and came to a decision. We were going to let Kasha tell us when it was time to give up. We looked at it as: she was ten years old and had had a wonderful, loving life so far, she was very spoiled and we really didn't think she would be happy. It's not that we didn't have faith in Kasha to pull through, but amputation is a pretty big surgery for a ten year old dog and although the specialist had told us that it would add 4-6 months to her life, we wanted her last days to be happy, comfortable ones, not uncomfortable.

Kasha was the best friend a person could have asked for, she was loving, protective, fun and most of all she had such a wonderful personality. Kasha braved it for almost 4 more weeks, still picking up frisbees on her way out the door into the backyard, still greeting us at the door when we came home.  She wasn't showing us that it was time to give up yet, so we just enjoyed her for the time that we had.

The wondering if every day was "the day" was very, very difficult, but everyone told us that she would let us know, and she did….

Kasha will never be forgotten, nor will the fun we had with her. We have many, many pictures to remind us of her, especially the mental pictures, they are the best…

We have since brought home a new puppy, not to replace Kasha but to fill the emptiness in the house we felt so deeply after losing Kasha. Bailey is a German Shepherd puppy and although very different from Kasha, she has filled our lives with love.



 

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