Monday, 12 January 2009

Poca, Santa and Wibble

I decide to give a short history over the next few days of my last 3 dogs from Tenerife as their photo is at the header of the blog.


Small hairy in the middle in the main blog photo. She was the first of the trio. We went to help some folks who moved onto a banana finca (farm) in Tenerife. The farm worker who also managed it moved out and left her. He could not afford to look after his family let alone the dog. We arrived to see this little dog sitting miserably by the gate. I fell for her from the start although never a “small dog” person she got to me. I used the water on rock technique on hub to get him to agree we could adopt her.

She was a fantastic ratter and we would sit and look at her after rats in the banana groves very fast and the rat was dead. Because the finca worker was so poor he did not feed her other than the odd scraps so she had had to forage for food. She would hold her own against any dog that wandered into her territory. When we got the other dogs they fell under her protective remit. Heaven help any animal that scared her pack.
Like me she did not think much of children or babies but she was not biased Poca added animals to the list she just did not see a reason for children or babies, human or animal to be on earth.

We had her when we moved from Tenerife to Lanzerote. On the boat trip over she ambled to the side of the ferry looked over and her eyes went as wide as saucers, she shot to the other side to be confronted by the same site and moved into the middle shaking. I had to chuckle while l gave her a reassuring cuddle.

She has been in the news papers world-wide. We lived in Lanzer’grottie (grottie because we did not like it, very flat, few trees, very windy) for 6 months.
While there we were commissioned by a TV station to cover the Gorbachev’s visit.
We decided to use some bait to get some nice footage so when they went out for their morning walk Poca trotted along with me as we filmed. Raisa noticed Poca as soon as she set foot outside the gates and homed in on her, asked a few questions and permission to walk her then set off leading her.
I have never met power walkers before, everyone else was almost running to keep up with the Gorbachev’s apparently normal walking pace. The results of the set-up were in papers around the world, several friends reported seeing her and as far as l know TV’s around the world carried the pictures also. If got us a couple of meals from the Daily Telegraph reporters who had been in on things and were grateful for the shots, mind you we did a lot more for them than that so it was the least they owed and l never once looked at the cost of the meal and ordered the cheapest meal. I went for the tastiest.

She would not tolerate animal visitors unless we brought them in. Her biggest cull was about 14 starlings one day. Don’t how she got them but she often killed birds, till they learnt to stay away. If we brought an animal in then into the house that was fine. Well apart from puppies or kittens did we really have to thrust these useless bits of fluff into her orderly life “ick” She would never hurt them but would lie on the settee or window ledge out of their way.
I would leave her to lay down the food bowl rule. Santa and Wibble’s bowls were for anyone. Pocas bowl was for Poca she would watch them go to her bowl and then dash over, lift them with her nose and throw them across the room. Then eat her food. That was all it took to teach them and easier than me keep saying no to them.

There was only one way to cut her nails. I would take her into work and would gas her down. While she was asleep l would also give her a good grooming. It was the least stressful way for both of us. As soon as she saw scissors, comb or brush she was gone..... Although she had a long coat she kept herself groomed and l just needed to undo the odd snarl in her coat, thank goodness.

Poca passed on about 3 years ago at about 18years of age. Up till she was15 she had always been fit but then she started bouts of pancreatitis. One night it reoccurred and l took her into work and we popped her onto a drip.
I was busy that night and did not look at her to close. In the morning she had a very small bit of blood from her nose. We ran bloods and her renal parameters were bad but we had to keep a high flow rate for a dialysis.
I looked at the vet and said “It isn’t fair is it”.
He said “Well we can possibly pull her through, give her a few more months maybe more maybe less, but it is up to you, but no she is not good and it will only be temporary whatever we do”
I rang hub who doted on her as well and he left the decision to me, l asked the vet to speak to him and hub still wouldn’t say as l was the one with knowledge and with her.
I held her while the vet gave her the injection and asked one of the newly arrived day shift to take care of her body.
If we had kept her going it would have been for us not her and l owed her more than that.


joker the lurcher said...

it is so tough when they have to go. it must be tougher in some ways for you as you see such a lot of medical stuff and the only way to deal with it is not to focus too much on the personality inside, yet when it is your own dog you have no way of protecting yourself. i have always been glad that we can do that last thing for our creatures; like you say, we owe it to them after all they give us.

Lisa said...

I found your blog today and enjoyed reading through the archives. Your dedication to the patients you help really shows. Thank you!

Vetnurse said...

Hi Lisa and welcome many thanks for your kind words and l am glad that you enjoy the blog :-)

Auntie Jane said...

It's never easy... but it is the least we can do for our beloved dogs that have given us so much. Only once have we been lucky enough to have one go while laying beside our bed in the night.