Tallulah: The Next Phase

For those of you who know me, know that wee girl is the center of my universe; she has me well-trained. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

But as with all life, we age and as we age our presence on this planet begins to slowly degrade and fade away.

Tallulah is 12 years (+9 months) old. At the age of 4, she was rescued from a truly horrific ‘breeder’ who kept her in a 2x2x2 cage, unless she was pregnant – which she was. A lot.

Within those four years, 77 puppies traveled through her tiny body. When backyard ‘breeders’ were banned from selling puppies to pet stores in Canada she, along with her sister, were dumped at the local pound.

Tallulah (in purple collar) and her sister, the day they were put up for adoption by Toronto Animal Services

She was vetted, spayed, and cleaned up, and shortly after put up for adoption.

The day I walked into the shelter I had no intention of coming home with a wee hen. I had my eye on a troublemaker husky known to be an efficient escape artist, and a crazy boy who attempted to eat my purse while I reviewed his file.

Tallulah was in the crate next to his.

I didn’t see her, she was hiding. But every time I turned away, she came out to look at me.

After a short while, a gentle tap on my shoulder alerted me to my bashful admirer. I removed her file from the hook and sat on the floor to read her lengthy file. I had my back to her kennel. Within a few minutes, I saw tentative movement out of the corner of my eye.

That’s all it took.

When I turned to look at her, she didn’t run. With the volunteer’s approval, I went into her kennel and she got up in my arms. She’s been there ever since. (And I stayed in that kennel for nearly 4 hours while my bemused hubby tackled the necessities, like paperwork and small-pup supplies).

Fast forward 8+ years.

all the blankets, please

Initially diagnosed with a Grade 3 heart murmur, Tallulah didn’t require medication or extra care, aside from careful monitoring. That changed recently when, following a cardiac ultrasound and examination, she was diagnosed with Grade C Congestive Heart Failure.

This is the beginning of the end.

But as my brother declared at his own AIDs diagnosis, “nothing has changed; I just got a clock.’

Moving forward, as I shift my life to focus on Tallulah’s care and well-being, I want to share two things on this blog:

  • Information about CHF as it impacts our lives, our medical choices, and challenges, and how we are living with it. My hope is that it might be of help to someone receiving a CHF diagnosis. This road has been walked before us and others will walk it after, but I hope these blog entries can act as guideposts to ease you, dear reader, on your own journey.
  • And secondly, as life spins by so fast at times, it’s easy to overlook the little miracles or lose track of moments so precious, that their loss is insurmountable, I want these posts to be a chronicle of who Tallulah is and the life we share.
Cold days in Canada – warms and snugs required

We have many miles to go before she sleeps. There are butterflies to chase, blankets to snuggle, and so much peanut butter to eat.

Please join us. I think you’ll enjoy the ride.

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