Wednesday, August 05, 2009

I'm not the only one getting older

The granddogs have been staying with me since last Thursday afternoon, when Kim and some of her friends took their Harleys and left for Sturgis, South Dakota. Her little dogs and my big ones are used to being together during the daytime, but it’s been interesting to watch them adjust their nighttime routines to accommodate each other.

My Kadi stopped sleeping with me about six months ago, preferring to sleep on the cool floor of the hall just outside my bedroom. Kim’s Lucy, on the other hand, thinks sleeping in the bed with me is a great idea, and Kadi isn’t willing to let Lucy have the spot that used to be hers. What neither Kadi nor I knew was that things have changed in the last six months.

Kadi can no longer jump up on my bed. She tried twice and failed both times, hanging on with the nails of her front paws while her back feet tried to gain some purchase to help her pull herself up. The expression on her face when she couldn’t do it made me feel sad for her.

So, for as long as Lucy is here, and longer if Kadi wants, our bedtime routine has changed. After the goodnight treats, after the last drinks of water, I climb into bed and Lucy jumps in after me. Butch makes a few circles on his bed, then settles down in the middle of it. Winston searches over the entire bedroom, trying one spot, then another, before finding the perfect Yorkie-sized nook beneath the window. Kadi stands in the hall, watching everybody get comfortable. Only then does she approach my bed and focus intently on my face. That’s my cue to get back out of bed, put Kadi’s front paws on top of the mattress, hook my arms together under her Big-Bertha butt, and boost her up.

She doesn’t stay long, half an hour maybe; the hall is still her favorite place to sleep. She just needs to be in my bed long enough to make her point, and I need to put her there so she’ll know she doesn’t have to handle her infirmities alone.


  1. My heart did a leap as I read about Kadi struggling. It's so hard to watch them age. I'm so glad you've all worked it out!

  2. I'm so glad to see your writing on your blog again. Your dog stories are the absolute best! This one brought a tear to my eye.

    Happy Retirement! ~ Joy in Texas

  3. You and Kadi have each other! Kadi wants the other dog to stay.........
    a visitor!

  4. This post resonates with me. I've faced that with Spot, I bought a set of dog steps but I couldn't stand the smell of the carpeting, and I intended to make it over but never got around to it. I think he's accepted he just can't get up on the bed anymore, but sometimes he looks up there and I get a pang in my heart for him.

  5. I had to put a bench at the end of my bed to provide a 'step' for my cat as she got older.

    Not sure if it would be an option for Kadi - sounds like you've worked out something already anyway.

  6. I've really missed you and I'm glad to discover you're back. Big hugs and skritches to Kadi...getting older, well, it isn't for the faint hearted.

  7. My little Dachshund, Puppy, is 10 years old and, since her legs are ridiculously short, she has never been able to get up on the bed. We went to a pet store and got her a very sturdy carpeted set of stairs that stays next to the bed at all times. Even so, now that she's getting older and the joints ache more and the back is a bit more stiff, she has trouble now and again. I always get up out of bed and help her up to her favorite spot on my pillow.
    I just wanted to say thank you for being such a great mom to Kadi and to Kim. :)

  8. Kadi's story really hit home with me today. I also have my "Bonnie", a sweet miniature poodle that I have had forever. I look at her now, almost completely blind, and deaf enough that I have to yell for her to hear me call her name. Funny, she does the same as Kadi. Although she used to sleep with me all the time, she now will "visit" me in bed (when I pick her up to put her on the bed) but then she wants to be put down on the floor again. I wonder if it is their way of saying good bye. I see Bonnie slowly distancing herself from me and it breaks my heart. I am reminded of the lively poodle that never left my side for all these years. Blessings to you, Donna.

  9. Hey Velvet!

    Go to & search for pet steps & ramps. It's gonna get cold on that floor. Just don't ask me how I know!

  10. Aging poops will break your heart.....


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