My Best Friend

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      This is my best friend of almost ten years, Umo in this picture. He was nine when it was taken this Summer. Doesn't he looks great?  He is almost 100 pounds too, so he is getting up on the years for such a big boy.

      I've had Umo since he was six weeks old. We've lived in three states together, road tripped tens of thousands of miles together. We flew him out to Las Vegas to join my husband and I at our wedding. He was six months old when mom and dad got hitched.

      I have fostered so many dogs that Umo has taught manners to. Always opening up his home for whatever doggy guest, but at the same time teaching these little heathens dogs how to properly behave in a home with dogs, kids, and children. Because of him no less than fifty pitbulls have found homes and stayed in them.

      He saved my daughters life once. She was going into anaphylactic shock and my husband and I were sleeping. He woke us up and dragged us into her bedroom at three in the morning. Somehow he knew something was wrong and slept in her bed last night. He usually sleeps in mine. How do you repay a dog that saved your child's life?!

      I am a Registered Veterinary Technician. I've saved countless lives that have been the only thing in lives that their owners gave. Their parents were so happy and grateful. But we have also lost some damn good dogs along the way as well. Their parents were beyond inconsolable but assured myself and my team that they were confident that we had tried our best. Some of them wailed so loudly in the room that a staff member would take them home because they were too upset to drive.  We rarely cry, although there have been a few occasions we have shed tears. 

      So what does one do when she's watching her best friend age?  I know what's going on, I have the medical education and experience to more than fully comprehend this, but how do I cope when it is MY best friend. Because it has ALWAYS been some one else's. 

      He is not doing terrible, it's just difficult finding a lump or bump or noticing something is aching when he stands. He still goes on boat rides, walks, car rides and even to the vet willingly. He loves the vet. It's just hard knowing that someday he won't be here.  May ever human be so lucky to have an Umo in tbeir lives.
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      He looks like a really beautiful gentle giant.  I don't know how you will cope - it will be hard.  Just enjoy every day with him that you can.

      When I lost my parrot - yeah I know it's not a dog but I still loved him, I struggled for months to deal with the loss and even now I get tearful thinking about him. 

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      I am so very sorry Jodi and i can not imagine losing one of my pets. They have such great personality's and i enjoy their antics. My cat (Grayon) was mad at me last night because i would not share my Chinese food and turned his back to me. I thought that was hilarious. I send cyber hugs to you for your loss my dear friend  .
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      OMG, you about have me in tears, both for the wonderful work you two have done with other dogs, and that he's growing old and sickly.  9 is too young to lose them.

      I have 4 dogs myself, ages 10 - 4 1/2, and I'm already worrying about losing them.  My oldest, Pinkie, is the dog in my avatar here.  She & I started doing foster work for Lhasas, but we got hung up on the second one we got and that was the end of that story.  He was so raw, so uncivilized - and a biter to boot - that I couldn't take in any more dogs.  But Pinkie & Willie so completely bonded within 3 days that he's still here, 8 years later - still biting if I do the wrong thing.    He loves me, but he's so difficult to manage that if I die before he does, he's going with me.  No one I know will take him because he's bitten all of them.  (fortunately, he's only 22 lbs)  He also terrorizes my 110 black lab male, who's my baby, and will do it to any other dog he deems a threat.

      For you and Umo to have helped that many dogs is truly remarkable and wonderful.  It takes a lot of work, dedication and love on your part, and a tremendous amount of patience and tolerance on his part - you obviously raised him well.  I'm in awe of both of you.

      It's always tremendously difficult & painful to lose one of our babies - but you know that already.  You can take solace in knowing that he's had a happy and very productive life, and that you gave that to him.  He wouldn't wish for anything better, and he knows you'll be with him until the last minute.  I hope that's not too soon, and I wish you both well.
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      blueday wrote:

      He looks like a really beautiful gentle giant.  I don't know how you will cope - it will be hard.  Just enjoy every day with him that you can.

      When I lost my parrot - yeah I know it's not a dog but I still loved him, I struggled for months to deal with the loss and even now I get tearful thinking about him. 




      Who cares if it's not a dog Blue?  Parrots are highly intelligent birds, and as you know the bond that they form with their 'mate' is extremely strong. I work for a reptile and amphibian vet and people always say stuff like 'I know it's just a Beardie or a snake or whatever pocket pet' but it's their pet. Have you adopted another bird since?
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      rena35 wrote:

      I am so very sorry Jodi and i can not imagine losing one of my pets. They have such great personality's and i enjoy their antics. My cat (Grayon) was mad at me last night because i would not share my Chinese food and turned his back to me. I thought that was hilarious. I send cyber hugs to you for your loss my dear friend  .


      Hahaha cats can be little DEVILS Rena!!!!  See my dogs would still wag their tails and look at me like I owed them money until they realized that the food is all gone. Then they would still sit there and do the same thing lol.
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      LhasaLover wrote:

      OMG, you about have me in tears, both for the wonderful work you two have done with other dogs, and that he's growing old and sickly.  9 is too young to lose them.

      I have 4 dogs myself, ages 10 - 4 1/2, and I'm already worrying about losing them.  My oldest, Pinkie, is the dog in my avatar here.  She & I started doing foster work for Lhasas, but we got hung up on the second one we got and that was the end of that story.  He was so raw, so uncivilized - and a biter to boot - that I couldn't take in any more dogs.  But Pinkie & Willie so completely bonded within 3 days that he's still here, 8 years later - still biting if I do the wrong thing.    He loves me, but he's so difficult to manage that if I die before he does, he's going with me.  No one I know will take him because he's bitten all of them.  (fortunately, he's only 22 lbs)  He also terrorizes my 110 black lab male, who's my baby, and will do it to any other dog he deems a threat.

      For you and Umo to have helped that many dogs is truly remarkable and wonderful.  It takes a lot of work, dedication and love on your part, and a tremendous amount of patience and tolerance on his part - you obviously raised him well.  I'm in awe of both of you.

      It's always tremendously difficult & painful to lose one of our babies - but you know that already.  You can take solace in knowing that he's had a happy and very productive life, and that you gave that to him.  He wouldn't wish for anything better, and he knows you'll be with him until the last minute.  I hope that's not too soon, and I wish you both well.


      Awe Lhasa now you're making me teary eyed haha.

      So you're a foster failure as well?  Join the club lollll. I as well have four dogs, all rescues. Three pitbulls and one St. Bernard. They all get along so well except for the youngest is a little terrorist hahahahaha.

      Thanks so much for not giving up on Pinkie- she probably had a rough life before she came to you and you love her even with her flaws. Maybe in a few years she will need her teeth cleaned and you can kindly ask the veterinarian to just go ahead and extract them all? 
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      jodiisgreat wrote:

      blueday wrote:

      He looks like a really beautiful gentle giant.  I don't know how you will cope - it will be hard.  Just enjoy every day with him that you can.

      When I lost my parrot - yeah I know it's not a dog but I still loved him, I struggled for months to deal with the loss and even now I get tearful thinking about him. 




      Who cares if it's not a dog Blue?  Parrots are highly intelligent birds, and as you know the bond that they form with their 'mate' is extremely strong. I work for a reptile and amphibian vet and people always say stuff like 'I know it's just a Beardie or a snake or whatever pocket pet' but it's their pet. Have you adopted another bird since?


      No I haven't.  I rescued "Blue" from his vile owner.  I rescued 3 budgies too and they lived long happy lives with me but they are all gone now.  It's just too painful to lose them and I don't want to go through it again....unless a bird desperately needs rescuing in which case, I would take them in a heartbeat. 
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      I have 2 dogs and 2 cats and love them like they were my kids

      and UMO you rock
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      blueday wrote:

      jodiisgreat wrote:

      blueday wrote:

      He looks like a really beautiful gentle giant.  I don't know how you will cope - it will be hard.  Just enjoy every day with him that you can.

      When I lost my parrot - yeah I know it's not a dog but I still loved him, I struggled for months to deal with the loss and even now I get tearful thinking about him. 




      Who cares if it's not a dog Blue?  Parrots are highly intelligent birds, and as you know the bond that they form with their 'mate' is extremely strong. I work for a reptile and amphibian vet and people always say stuff like 'I know it's just a Beardie or a snake or whatever pocket pet' but it's their pet. Have you adopted another bird since?


      No I haven't.  I rescued "Blue" from his vile owner.  I rescued 3 budgies too and they lived long happy lives with me but they are all gone now.  It's just too painful to lose them and I don't want to go through it again....unless a bird desperately needs rescuing in which case, I would take them in a heartbeat. 


      Awe that's so nice of you yes wasn't Blue featherless when you rescued him?  I think I remember you saying something along those lines.

      There are unfortunately ALWAYS going to be animals out there that desperately need people like all of us. Have you contacted any avian rescues near you to see if perhaps you could foster?
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      jodiisgreat wrote:


      Awe Lhasa now you're making me teary eyed haha.

      So you're a foster failure as well?  Join the club lollll. I as well have four dogs, all rescues. Three pitbulls and one St. Bernard. They all get along so well except for the youngest is a little terrorist hahahahaha.

      Thanks so much for not giving up on Pinkie- she probably had a rough life before she came to you and you love her even with her flaws. Maybe in a few years she will need her teeth cleaned and you can kindly ask the veterinarian to just go ahead and extract them all?   


        Don't think I haven't thought about that!!!  It's Willie that's the biter, tho, not Pinkie.  She's a bomb-proof, precious little girl who wouldn't hurt anyone.  Willie, on the other hand......  He's so bad he has to be knocked out 3 times a year to be shaved down.  They have to put him out for anything at the Vet's office.  hehehe  They're very good about it, tho; they've taken care of him for the 8 yrs I've had him, and he's a legend in their office.  Willie is my only true rescue, although my 2 labs were accidental acquisitions, and the female came from a very bad situation at 4 weeks.  She's a wonderful dog, loved by everyone.  The dogs I raise from puppies are very good and loving; it's the fosters that got me.  The only 2 dogs I've ever been bitten by were both my fosters!!  hehehehehe

      Why on earth would you consider yourself a foster failure? You said you & Umo helped 50 pits?  That's phenomenal!!  I know it takes a huge amount of work with each dog to get them well behaved & adoptable.  And I know a lot of them must have come with emotional baggage, which is the worst.  To have helped that many dogs is nothing short of a HUGE success!
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      LhasaLover wrote:

      jodiisgreat wrote:


      Awe Lhasa now you're making me teary eyed haha.

      So you're a foster failure as well?  Join the club lollll. I as well have four dogs, all rescues. Three pitbulls and one St. Bernard. They all get along so well except for the youngest is a little terrorist hahahahaha.

      Thanks so much for not giving up on Pinkie- she probably had a rough life before she came to you and you love her even with her flaws. Maybe in a few years she will need her teeth cleaned and you can kindly ask the veterinarian to just go ahead and extract them all?   


        Don't think I haven't thought about that!!!  It's Willie that's the biter, tho, not Pinkie.  She's a bomb-proof, precious little girl who wouldn't hurt anyone.  Willie, on the other hand......  He's so bad he has to be knocked out 3 times a year to be shaved down.  They have to put him out for anything at the Vet's office.  hehehe  They're very good about it, tho; they've taken care of him for the 8 yrs I've had him, and he's a legend in their office.  Willie is my only true rescue, although my 2 labs were accidental acquisitions, and the female came from a very bad situation at 4 weeks.  She's a wonderful dog, loved by everyone.  The dogs I raise from puppies are very good and loving; it's the fosters that got me.  The only 2 dogs I've ever been bitten by were both my fosters!!  hehehehehe

      Why on earth would you consider yourself a foster failure? You said you & Umo helped 50 pits?  That's phenomenal!!  I know it takes a huge amount of work with each dog to get them well behaved & adoptable.  And I know a lot of them must have come with emotional baggage, which is the worst.  To have helped that many dogs is nothing short of a HUGE success!


      Oh I don't mean a real 'failure' I just meant that I 'failed' to get them adopted out lollllllll. But that's ok!  Here they stay I love my pack.
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      jodiisgreat wrote:

      blueday wrote:

      jodiisgreat wrote:

      blueday wrote:

      He looks like a really beautiful gentle giant.  I don't know how you will cope - it will be hard.  Just enjoy every day with him that you can.

      When I lost my parrot - yeah I know it's not a dog but I still loved him, I struggled for months to deal with the loss and even now I get tearful thinking about him. 




      Who cares if it's not a dog Blue?  Parrots are highly intelligent birds, and as you know the bond that they form with their 'mate' is extremely strong. I work for a reptile and amphibian vet and people always say stuff like 'I know it's just a Beardie or a snake or whatever pocket pet' but it's their pet. Have you adopted another bird since?


      No I haven't.  I rescued "Blue" from his vile owner.  I rescued 3 budgies too and they lived long happy lives with me but they are all gone now.  It's just too painful to lose them and I don't want to go through it again....unless a bird desperately needs rescuing in which case, I would take them in a heartbeat. 


      Awe that's so nice of you yes wasn't Blue featherless when you rescued him?  I think I remember you saying something along those lines.

      There are unfortunately ALWAYS going to be animals out there that desperately need people like all of us. Have you contacted any avian rescues near you to see if perhaps you could foster?


      I have thought about contacting a sanctuary that's not too far from me.  I need to consider if I could let go after "fostering" though.  I think I would find it hard.
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      blueday wrote:

      jodiisgreat wrote:

      blueday wrote:

      jodiisgreat wrote:

      blueday wrote:

      He looks like a really beautiful gentle giant.  I don't know how you will cope - it will be hard.  Just enjoy every day with him that you can.

      When I lost my parrot - yeah I know it's not a dog but I still loved him, I struggled for months to deal with the loss and even now I get tearful thinking about him. 




      Who cares if it's not a dog Blue?  Parrots are highly intelligent birds, and as you know the bond that they form with their 'mate' is extremely strong. I work for a reptile and amphibian vet and people always say stuff like 'I know it's just a Beardie or a snake or whatever pocket pet' but it's their pet. Have you adopted another bird since?


      No I haven't.  I rescued "Blue" from his vile owner.  I rescued 3 budgies too and they lived long happy lives with me but they are all gone now.  It's just too painful to lose them and I don't want to go through it again....unless a bird desperately needs rescuing in which case, I would take them in a heartbeat. 


      Awe that's so nice of you yes wasn't Blue featherless when you rescued him?  I think I remember you saying something along those lines.

      There are unfortunately ALWAYS going to be animals out there that desperately need people like all of us. Have you contacted any avian rescues near you to see if perhaps you could foster?


      I have thought about contacting a sanctuary that's not too far from me.  I need to consider if I could let go after "fostering" though.  I think I would find it hard.


      One of the great things about fostering through most rescues is that they will let you 'foster to adopt' which means that if you decide that the bird isn't 'the one' then you can find it a home that is!  If it is 'the one', then you can move forward with the adoption.  Whatever you choose, I think that a bird would be lucky to be fostered or adopted by you.  I am also a firm believer that all of our animals past would want us to just be happy, and they would want another animal in need to be as well taken care of as they were with you.  Good luck, Blue and keep us posted!

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