“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.”
–Roger Caras (photographer and writer)
It is hard to write this but I want to tell our story, as it is today. We have learned that our pup Joker is very sick. He has tumors in his liver and spleen, and based on the ultrasound, the cancer has spread throughout his body. He is struggling and so are we. Joker can’t sit or lie down without a whimper. When he is down, it takes him a long time to get his body up. When he stands, he holds it as long as he can so that he does not have to go through the pain of this motion. Joker wakes us most nights with either a bad dream, or an attempt at movement gone wrong. Our other dog Lincoln does not know what to do, he knows his brother is ill but is also eager to play. It is heart breaking and emotional for all of us. We know we do not have much time with him so we are taking in every second.
On the positive side, he still gets excited to see us and wags his tail when he has the strength. He still loves to be touched and loved. Joker is still eating and loves treats… so, that’s how we get him to try going down the stairs. He can no longer go our our back door but the front is still an option. When he gets there, he is thrilled to go to the bathroom. These things might seem minor but they feel huge to us right now.
So, I write about this on my Rendition Studios page because I think loss has defined my work and is an important part of why I do what I do. I use this as a reminder to you all to take pictures, lots and lots and lots of pictures. (With or without me behind the lens.) Our memories fade and those images grow in value with each passing year. Thank you to my friend Emily for taking this wonderful shot of our best buddy Joker, just last week.
Almost a week later, on September 21st, we had to put Joker down. It is and was devastating, but he was ready to go. He is so very missed by each of us.