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Sunday, 22 March 2015

Goodbye to our Poppy

I mentioned in my last post that we had a personal tragedy recently.  I did a short post about it on FB after it happened and I've been meaning to post it here but it's been hard to write about it without crying.  We lost our precious Yellow Labrador, Poppy, on 11 March and she was only 7 years old.



She hadn't been herself since before last Christmas and the vet thought she had a stomach bug.  We always thought she'd eventually get over it as she just seemed a bit poorly and it didn't stop her from doing all of the normal things.

We became really concerned when we picked her up from the kennels when we returned from our Thailand trip in February and she had lost over 3.5 kilos during her stay there.  We managed to get her weight back up a bit, but then she started to become a fussy eater and would barely move.  I won't go into the rest of the gory details of her bodily functions, but she was definitely not right.  The vet still thought it was a stomach infection, but we insisted she was referred to the Royal Veterinary College.

It was there that the oncologist, Stephanie, found Poppy had pancreatic cancer that had slowly spread over the months to her stomach and lungs.  She only had a 13% chance of recovery after months of treatment and then, if successful, would only prolong her life for 4 or 5 months.  We decided to put her to sleep and it was the hardest decision I have ever had to make in my life.

As our first dog, I read up on how to look after the Labrador breed and even dog psychiatry books so we could be the best parents for her.  Steve chose Poppy from a litter of boisterous puppies.  She was the one who was very floppy and couldn't even stand properly!  She was so cute and when we chose her the breeder put a dab of Tippex on her ear to mark her as ours.

She had two hip replacements before she was even three years old and wasn't very happy when we brought her new "sister", Lulu, home!  Poppy loved her walks, being with her "grandparents", going swimming, fetching things thrown to her in the sea, sniffing out old tennis balls, being allowed on the sofa and, most of all, eating as much as she could.  A typical Labrador.

I can't write any more, the tears are free flowing again!  To end on a happy note, here are few photos of her to remind me of the happy memories she has left us.

First snow adventure
A typical sitting pose
Being tolerant of Lulu!
A rare sisterly moment, allowing Lulu to groom her!
Cool dog at Birling Gap, one of our very many happy trips there

Steve and I with our baby


 Goodbye Poppy, we will always remember and love you.


32 comments:

Have A Scrap Happy Day said...

Hi Mary. I'm so sorry for your loss and hope that the happy memories of Poppy will help you and Steve thru this difficult time. The photos you shared are so adorable, especially the one of her in the snow. Soooooo CUTE. May it bring comfort to you knowing that she knew how much you all loved her and was happy to be a part of your caring family. Big hugs to you Mary.

Stamps and Paper said...

Hi Mary....I know exactly how you feel having been in the same situation...its so heartbreaking but think of the happy life she had with you...thank you for sharing your beuatiful photographs of her...sending you a big hug...

Anne

Marianne's Craftroom said...

Awww Mary I am so sad for you but you have some lovely memories and know that she had the best life she could have had, you made her days happy ones , sending hugs xx

aileen (mum) said...

Mary, I am so sorry for your families loss. You have done awonderful tribute to him.
I thought I would share A little story. We have never had dogs because I have always had such an unbelivable fear of dogs. I dont know where it comes from but it was always there and I would walk miles out of my way to avoid the dogs in the street.
Then My fourth child was born and she has dual disabilities. Life can be lonley when your disabled and I am always looking for ways to make her life more enjoyable. We have been given a dog from the guide dog association that is specially trained to work with kids like Elysha.
Suddenly we have a dog that lives with us and I have found this amazing creature that follows us round everywhere and brings so much joy to my daughter. He is just wonderful and has won all our hearts and taken over the whole household.
Now I can understand the joy and heartache people have when they have a dog come live with them. I couldnt image our lives without Jake now and I can only hope that your grief will lift over time. Love and best wishes Mary. aileen

mixamatoasties said...

xxxx

Tracey T said...

So sorry to hear this, Mary. You did the kindest thing for Poppy and she obviously had a very happy life with you. Sending a big hug xx

Pöydän kulmalla näpertelijä said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. My dog will be 14 this summer so I expect he's not going to be with us much longer. I can't even image life without him. Dogs bring so much joy and happiness in to our lives. Sending hugs.

Natalia Smith said...

Sorry to hear about your loss. Adorable photos of Poppy. Sending Hugs xx

Kim O'Connell said...

Well, sheesh! Now I am crying, too. This hits a little too close to home and our 7 yo yellow lab Calvin is our first dog that we picked from a litter of pups from a breeder and we studied up on how to best care for him before we got him as well. I dread the day we lose him. I can only imagine the level of heartbreak you are feeling. So sorry for your loss of Poppy! Hugs to you, friend!

Anita said...

OK, I'm sitting here bawling like a baby. I am so attached to my little furbaby and can't image losing him. I'm so sorry for your loss Mary. I hope the great memories of Poppy bring your lots of warm fuzzies and give Lulu hugs from me. I'm sure she's missing her big sister.

JanR said...

Aw, Mary. So sorry for your loss. (((HUGS)))

Bridget said...

Oh Mary....I'm so, so sorry that you had to say goodbye to Poppy - it's so painful, the gap in your heart just aches...she was a very lucky little lab to have been chosen to be part of your family and to be loved by you for her whole life, xx

Rachel Parys said...

So sorry Mary!! She was a doll!! I am glad you have these really wonderful pictures to remember her. You are in my prayers.

Dotty Jo x said...

Sounds as if you gave her the best life a dog could wish for and you shared much happiness as a family, Jo x

Sue said...

Oh, I am so sorry for your loss Mary, I am in tears reading this and my heart goes out to you.
Your photos are so beautiful, I can imagine how much joy and happiness Poppy bought into your life and you must have loads of wonderful memories.
Take care, sending you hugs, Sue xx

Sue from Oregon said...

OH goodness...crying right along with you. I am so very sorry-Poppy was a beautiful dog.

S. Thomas said...

I am so sorry for your loss.

Fiona said...

oh my Mary...I am crying with you Mary as I know exactly how you feel. We lost our yellow lab Pepper last year to cancer, she could have had treatment too and again the vet said it may only prolong her lifer by 6 months but on New Years Day was when she lost her battle, she was 13 years old. She has left a big hole in our lifes but we have lots of good memories just like you. You keep your chin up and think of the good times. Fi x

Chrissy said...

My heart goes out to you Mary, and to Steve, on the loss of your beautiful Poppy.I'm so very sorry..how devastating for you..

luv CHRISSYxx

Sarah said...

I am so very sorry for your loss Mary, we let our boy go last year due to ill health and have always thought that after all the love and loyalty he gave us over the years, it was the very best we could do for him. You clearly have some very happy memories and they will stay with you always xx Suzy sends wags for Lulu xx

Asha said...

So very sorry to read this, Mary. We lost our dear kitty to mammary gland cancer a couple of years ago and our dear Rosie has lung cancer. My heart goes out to you. Poppy is always with you. Remember the happy times, those far out number the sad days. Sending you hugs, Asha

Wendy said...

Oh Mary I'm so so sorry to hear about Poppy, I have tears flowing down my face and know just how you are feeling.I still cry when I think of our gorgeous Jake (English Pointer) who was only just 8 when we had to say goodbye My heart goes out to you, sending you hugs.
Gorgeous photos, hold on to those wonderful memories.
Wendy xx

Sandra Schroeder said...

So, so sorry for your loss. I know exactly how you feel. We have gone through that many times. Most recently in December when we had to put our Charlie to sleep. I couldn't even say goodbye, because I was in the hospital. This is the price our hearts have to pay when we choose to take in a furry family member. But remember all the joy they gave us while they were here. God bless.

Bożena Adamusińska said...

Very sorry. Late last year, we had to say goodbye to one of our cats, because they suffered from kidney failure. This terribly experienced and fully understand your pain and despair. I'm with you in these difficult days.
hugs,
Bozena

Bożena Adamusińska said...

Very sorry. Late last year, we had to say goodbye to one of our cats, because they suffered from kidney failure. This terribly experienced and fully understand your pain and despair. I'm with you in these difficult days.
hugs,
Bozena

theCook said...

Oh Mary I am so sorry for your loss! This must be very hard. I think you have the right attitude posting pictures of her in her best moments, this is how you want to remember her!

Dina Knutson said...

Mary I am so sorry for your loss. Pets are furry family, and I am so sorry for you and your family. Her photos are beautiful, and she was such a cute puppy! Love the pictures. Take care!!!!!!

Christine L said...

Oh my goodness Mary...... I'm sitting here crying too now and feeling your sorrow... Those photographs of Poppy are wonderful - she couldn't have asked for better parents to love her as much as you and your hubbie did.

Although it was short, I can tell by the photos that she had a wonderfully happy life.. even though she did have to 'tolerate' Lulu at times! I'm hoping Lulu is OK even though she must be missing Poppy terribly too.

Big hugs for you and RIP Poppy..
Christine x

Whisper said...

Aaaah you poor thing - my heart goes out to you and your hubby, how is Lulu coping without her best friend ? Whisper is 15 or 16 and i know she is living on borrowed time, but it won't be any easier, when she does go,luv Sam x

littlebee said...

Hiya Mary, sorry you've lost your beautiful girl Poppy. We lost our yellow lab, Gemma to cancer at 15, following a lengthy battle and being blind her last couple of years (due to the treatment keeping her alive). Such lovely photos to treasure and remind you of the wonderful times. I hope Lulu is coping with being lonely without her doggy sister. Love to you all x Sue

Lisa said...

I think my most favorite picture that you posted is the one of Poppy being 'tolerant' of Lulu. That cracked me up so much! Amazing what our furry best friends can teach us about friendship and love and living. Even just looking at these pictures, you can tell that Poppy had the best life full of love, memories and two of the best parents anyone could hope for.
I'm hopeful that Poppy has found my furry buddy Duke, a great dane (not nearly as tolerant and known for hiking his leg on small yappy dogs like poodles.) and they are frolicking together pain free.
Biggest of hugs to you my friend,
Lisa xx

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