First of all, the name was picked by my wife who felt that, given his birth defects (deformed elbows and knees) he needed a tough guy name. Through 3 limb/joint surgeries he has persevered and though not living up to the tough guy name, has been the happiest dog you could imagine (in between bouts of anxiety and waning self esteem).
This is not a requiem for Spike. He’s alive and well after yet another surgery; this time for a tumor on his mouth. It is cancerous and we are waiting for the full biopsy report to tell us whether it’s grade 1, 2 or 3. He’s 11 years old now and we are just hoping he can get a couple more years of comfortable existence. I am writing this O/T post because a few people wrote in after I’d noted his situation. They shared their own experiences with 4 legged loved ones. I guess if you’re a dog lover, you just know what I mean. It’s not just an animal.
Anyway, here is a picture from a few years ago during Snowmageddon. He loved the foxhole I made around the house. Always ready to play, even though dad was beat.
Here is Spike currently, with protective cone (or hood or whatever you’d call it) after surgery, with one of his little brothers. Ya, we are cat people too.
The thing is, he holds his head down in low self esteem mode as he walks around banging that stupid thing into everything. He doesn’t know why he has to wear a cone of shame.
But here’s a funny thing; when I play my guitar he often comes into my office and starts singing… literally wailing, sometimes in tune. He sings with a passion and soulfulness, almost as if he’s going to cry, his doggie lyrics are so soulwrenching. It’s usually when I play the high strings and notes. For instance, the song Unglued by Stone Temple Pilots has a little annoyingly awesome solo in it, and when I play that part he just loses his mind. Except now he’s amplified inside that cone! I can’t even hear what I am doing.
Picture it, a newsletter writer takes a break from writing, picks up the git fiddle, his cone headed vocalist comes in, awaits his cue and then lets ‘er rip. It’s the funniest fuckin’ thing.
That’s the Spike update. He’s doing fine and thank you to the people who wrote and others who may be be wishing him well, knowing what a good dog really is all about.