I don't talk much about my dogs on here. I have two. The white one: a 13 year old fluffy mid sized mongrel female named Flynn and the brown one: a 15 year old large German shorthaired pointer male named Oscar.
The reason I haven't talked about them much is because they became 'just dogs'. Before the kids were born every movement, every house we moved to, every holiday, everything was about them. And then I had babies and they were still loved but not everything like they had been.
And so their watch began.
They stood by the kids and I as we moved our lives around them. They have at times been a burden of worry and time. But also provided us with so much love and protection they are as much a part of our family as the humans.
But now they are old ... Not just a little grey but both of them, end of life old.
She has had some kind of brain event that I think is a stroke. She is still happy, eating and drinking normally but her tongue doesn't work as well as it used to so she has terrible breath at times and drools more. Sometimes she goes a bit bonkers for an hour or two and then comes back to her normal self.
He is covered in lumps. Some are just fatty but some I am sure is cancer. Same as her he is still happy and pain free but he is also quite deaf and blind and as he has gotten older he is far more stubborn.
Oh and they have both started weeing the bed occasionally in their sleep ... Fun times.
The thing is I made them two promises.
1. They would live a good life with us till the end of their days.
2. Seeing that they were so old already I would do as little intervening as possible. Just making sure they are pain free and happy.
When looking at selling our house I knew I had to find somewhere that they could live with us. For a moment this looked nearly impossible. Finding houses in this area in my budget meant looking further away from the boys school or in locations that weren't very nice or safe feeling. But the universe was on our side and we found one that hit all of the buttons for the humans and the dogs.
So these days I find I have a bit more time for them. They are more everything than they have been in a long while. I want to let the lay on the lounge with me, something that was absolutely forbidden for most of their lives. I want to watch them fall asleep with their heads in my lap. I let them stay inside when it's cold even if we are out. Stroke their velvety soft ears. Kiss them on their noses. Because I can see that this next move will probably be the last house they live in and I just can't imagine what life without these stinky stupid loving protective dogs would be like.
And so my watch begins.