There was a pack of dogs racing back and forth through the wooded area of the park and Ray was all charged up. Usually when a pack races in the woods, Ray runs in the open area bordering the woods, yelling all the way. He tries to keep up (usually he's half a turn behind) and he's come close to the rock before, but he always swerves at the last minute, either just missing it or grazing it just a bit. I usually try to keep an eye out, and if he gets too close, I yell, "BE CAREFUL," but mostly Ray keeps track of it (I don't know how, he just does.)
Today I had turned away for a moment and when I turned back he was in the midst of a full-on collision. His head and neck snapped around, he staggered, then walked away licking his nose. I thought for sure this was it. This was the one to do him in. I ran over to him, grabbed his collar, and led him away, looking for signs of blood. I pulled his lips back to see if he'd smashed his teeth. Nothing. I made him stay still, while I checked him over, then turned him loose. He ran and yelled like he normally does. All I could think of was the headache he must have.
I've always known that Ray is not likely to be a long-lived dog. I figure he'll die of a broken neck from slamming into something (like today). Or Gregg and I will slip up, Ray will get out of the house or yard and get hit by a car. It will only take one mistake on our part for this to happen. Just one. It's a sobering reality for me. Like the thought of Murphy moving away, I try not to think about it. But it's there. Lurking in the back of my mind all the time. And today the harsh reality struck Ray in the face while I stood by helpless. I'm guessing that will happen at the end too.
I cried when I read this post. Certainly, that may never turn out to be the case - Ray may well live to be 15 years old and pass away in his sleep. It's the uncertainty and the worst case scenario imaginings that do us in. I could never have predicted that sweet Tucker would be killed just before his first birthday - and if I had to choose a dog who probably WOULD die early as the result of some crazy behavior, it would have been Josey; I've even had several dreams throughout the years about her dying in bizarre ways because she's so wild; yet here she is about to turn 10... So, just like with children, we can only do our best, and hope for a little good luck, too. When Ray does go, he'll die a happy dog :)ReplyDelete
Tears washed my face when I read about Ray. My dog is a lab and Superdog is 14 1/2. He just turned deaf. When I leave to go to the job Superdog will sit in the backyard and cry. It is a sad crying sound that tears at your heart strings. He sounds like he knows he is deaf. Yet he doesn't get along with other dogs. He looks forward to our time together and I love him more than anything. Unconditional love. Goes both ways. We care about Ray.ReplyDelete
Tears would have washed down my face except I was at the front desk and had to contain my emotions. You shouldn't think about the what if's. You should just think about all the fun that Ray the Blind dog has brought into your life. You owe all this to one of your favorite sisters.ReplyDelete
I certainly will have no regrets about adopting Ray. And I think he's having a pretty good time (despite the fact that he STILL doesn't have a boy.) That's all that matters. And I know that last comment was written by "one of my favorite sisters."ReplyDelete
I know how you feel, each time Conor walks smack into something he kind of winces but is so stoical and so not deterred from keeping going I feel almost humble, but I too have had the horrid feeling about him escaping and coming to some awful harm, or causing an accident, but we cannot let these fears cripple our lives, he absolutely does not worry about it and I don't suppose Ray does either !ReplyDelete
That's right. I think they'd rather just get on with their lives and have as much fun as they can. At least that's my take on it. Who wants to sit around in the dark, doing nothing, just waiting to die? Certainly NOT Ray!ReplyDelete
He takes his life by the neck. Whether eating one or taking one. Good dog, good life.ReplyDelete
~Melinda from Texas