When I’m 112…

This is who we are babysitting for the next 2 weeks. Her name is Velmarie, she’s 16 years old, and she is an Australian shepherd, even though she looks like a bear. She’s mostly blind, mostly deaf, and mostly crippled by arthritis. She’s about the sweetest thing on earth, but it hurts me so much to watch her try to get around. Sometimes, she gets stuck in a corner, where there’s not much visual contrast, and she’ll just stand there till someone comes over and guides her away.

She spends a lot of time sleeping when there’s no one around, with her nose in her mom’s slipper. She didn’t hear me come up from the basement, so I was able to get this picture:

When we’re around, she must stagger to her feet and remain standing, because, you know, she just might need to “herd” us somewhere. It’s so sad to see, especially since we’ve known her for over 6 years, and remember when she was as frisky as a pup.

I do hope, if I make it to age 112, and I’m in this kind of shape, that someone will kindly and gently help me on to the other side.

God bless you, Vel!



3 thoughts on “When I’m 112…

  1. Ohhhh. What a sweetie.

    I had a cocker spaniel for 13 years. She was my best friend forever. I remember when she got the way this one is and how hard it was on both of us.

    I couldn’t move furniture because she had the room memorized and moving things sometimes resulted in bumps.

    But that nose never stopped. She could smell food from two rooms away and would suddenly silently appear at my feet.

    Thanks for that memory GG.

  2. Oh, she’s beautiful. What a sweet old lady!

    Our dog, Reba, is over 13 years old now. She’s a black lab/chow mix. She too is deaf and struggling with arthritis. Cataracts are starting to sneak their way into her eyes, but as of right now she still has most of her vision.

    It saddens us to watch her age, but every now and then she still surprises us, usually by getting involved in a rousing game of chase with our boys. The other day, though, she really surprised me by racing outside into 6 inches of snow and actually FROLICKING, shoving her face in it and kicking it up all over.

    That old girl just may have a little puppy left in her yet! Thanks for sharing your houseguest with the rest of us.

  3. Thanks, ladies. She’s actually doing really well. We let her spend as much time as she wants outside and she loves our yard. We play music in the house and try to be fairly quiet, as they only noises she can really hear are loud noises, and she has always been afraid of loud noises. She is getting drops for her cataracts, and I do think they are helping. We just try to let her be and keep her out of blank corners, which confuse her!

    She is a sweet old dog!


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