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I keep a list of ideas for blog posts.  At present I have about a dozen in my notebook and I even knew which one I wanted to use next.  But then Kai got sick.


The day I first met her.


Kai and I are ready to make the trip home to Texas.

Kaimana is our 4 month old puppy.  An exuberant bundle of fur, razor-sharp teeth and tenacity, she is contagiously adorable.  I brought her home from North Carolina when she was 7.5 weeks old because that’s the latest a rottweiler puppy will fit in a carry-on crate.  In the short 9 weeks she has been a part of our family, she has wiggeled her way into our hearts.

Friday night she was fine.  She rode with me to pick up Steve and two of my children as they returned from Wilderness Trek in Colorado.  She made a stack of new friends as she greated everyone in the parking lot.  When I laid eyes on her the next morning, I knew something wasn’t right.  Lethargic puppies are an oxymoron.  So are puppies who don’t dive headlong into their food bowls.

After 2 days and as many trips to the vet, the worst was confirmed.  Kai has parvo.

Kai the sleepy head at 3 months.

Kai the sleepy head at 3 months.

Despite vaccinations and freakishly over protective owners, Kai has the toughest thing a puppy can get.  There is no treatment.  None.  No magic medicine, no surgery, no cure.

The torture of wait and see began yesterday morning.  From the outset the vet and tech have been very honest and I like honesty, it’s what I’m all about.  But honesty hurts when it comes in the form of “She will get worse and then she will either get better or she won’t.”  That kind of honesty stinks.

We left her with at the vet yesterday and have been back to visit 3 times in the last 24 hours.  She is worse.  Her pitiful face crushes my heart.  I swear I won’t go back to see her; it’s too hard.

But then I get home and think about how terrible she is feeling.  Nothing there is familiar; she is without her toys, her bowl, her people.  And I find myself walking back through the door for another bleak visit.

Why do I do this to myself?  Why do I keep going back when I know I will most likely leave in tears?  Because that’s what love does; it does the hard things.  Whether the hard things relate to puppies or people, they are done because we love.

My family and I will go to bed again wondering what we will find in the morning.  We earnestly hope that this is the turning point.  We are painfuly aware that it could get worse, much worse.

My love for a chubby puppy named Kai compels me to do what is hard, even though it breaks my heart.  If you’ve ever loved someone, or owned a dog who stole your heart then your get it.

I hope that next week I’ll be writing my post with a cuddly puppy laying beside me.589