Kramer, the Goodest of all the Good Boys

IMG_1810.jpg
I took this at 12:41pm, Tuesday, June 5th, 2018. Forty minutes later, we said goodbye to Kramer.

Losing a pet feels (I imagine) like being hit by a bus. But losing one so suddenly, with no time to prepare yourself for the grief… the sadness is so overwhelming, so intense that it’s literally breathtaking, in the bad definition of that word.

IMG_2641.jpg
The day after I brought him home. April 28, 2014.

On Saturday, Kramer was his normal, weird, goofy self. When I woke up Sunday, something seemed off about him. He didn’t seem to be in pain, he was just acting kind of odd. I thought maybe he’d eaten something in the garden that had given him a stomachache, so I didn’t worry too much. But on Sunday night when he couldn’t stand up, I rushed him to the emergency room.

IMG_2713.jpg
My big goofball. May 17, 2014.

They kept him overnight, and the next morning I learned the diagnosis: not just cancer, but advanced, end-stage cancer that had spread to his lymph nodes and lungs. Even though he’d just been at the vet for a checkup the week before, there had been no sign that he was sick. There were some slightly strange results in his bloodwork, but nothing I was told to worry about. We’d re-check it in three weeks. But we never got that far.

IMG_0016.jpg
Naptime habits. July 2, 2014.

After I got the diagnosis, I talked to the emergency room vet, then our family vet, and they gave me the same advice. Ease his pain and give him a humane ending, rather than putting him through chemotherapy that would probably prolong his suffering and only give him a few more months. And so the next day, I sat on the floor with his head in my lap as he gently passed away.

IMG_3103.jpg
After doing a set. August 21, 2015.

I don’t know what to say, or what to do to console myself. There isn’t anything, really. The passage of time will mean that I’ll remember the pain less often, but all my happy memories of this goofy, playful boy are now also tied to the memories of how quickly, how unfairly his life was cut too short.

IMG_2514.jpg
Keeping me company at work, May 30, 2015.

It hurts to even think about him right now. Even the good times, and the ways he’d make everyone laugh. He was such a weird, funny dude. When I was at home, Kramer never left my side.

IMG_0468.jpg
Christmas 2015.

In 2014 I adopted Kramer from my friend Charlie, the same friend who had given me Maggie eight years earlier. He was four years old at the time, and it’s hard to believe that at that point he’d lived half his life.

IMG_1092.jpg
The ultra-rare photo of him playing with a toy. January 26, 2016.

Soon after I brought him home, I realized his name fit him very well. Kramer was happy, excitable, nervous, and a bit manic, but he was always full of love for the people around him.

IMG_1733.jpg
Christmas 2016.

I was never quite fast enough to keep up with him, and he and Maggie had a few disagreements over the years. But he became a part of the family, and he made me so happy. I think the feeling was mutual.

IMG_1645.jpg
Working in the new garden. March 27, 2017.

For as long as I live in this home, the house I was building when I got Kramer, every corner of every room, ever slope of the garden will remind me of him. With time, I think—I hope—these will become happy memories.

IMG_2360.jpg
It cracked me up when he crossed his paws like this… so gentlemanly. June 7, 2017.
IMG_2941.jpg
Staring at the solar eclipse. August 21, 2017.
IMG_0249.jpg
Not quite understanding snowfall. December 8, 2017.
IMG_1165.jpg
Springtime loungin’. April 8, 2018.
IMG_1270.jpg
Squirrel Watch. April 14, 2018.
IMG_1771.jpg
After leaving the hospital. June 4, 2018.
IMG_1798.jpg
One last moment in the sun. June 5, 2018.

Kramer, I don’t know how to get over you, bud. I can’t imagine what it will be like, but I’ll never forget you.

7 thoughts on “Kramer, the Goodest of all the Good Boys

  1. So sorry for your loss. I know that’s a cliché phrase, but it’s so true. An Irish Wolfhound named Strider, was my soul mate and I grieve him, still, twelve years after his passing. They will always be with us. From these photos it’s clear there was a wonderful bond between you both, and that Kramer had a love-filled (and toy-filled) life with you. You were both lucky to have each other for the time you did. Not that those words makes it any easier today. But somewhere, he still loves you and always will.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so very sorry for your loss…my heart hurts just looking through all the pictures, Kramer was very loved. My cat Peanut died almost 2 years ago and I still swear I see her out of the corner of my eye from time to time and it still hurts in a deep place that will forever miss my best friend and companion through my 20’s and 30’s. I don’t think it will ever go away, but it will soften. Big hugs to you <3

    Liked by 1 person

  3. No words can express the pain that comes with saying goodbye to our best friends who rely on us. In time, the memories will become easier to remember and cherish, even if they are too painful to think of at the moment. He was an incredibly lucky boy boy to have you as an owner and best friend who loved him as much as you did. It was the most humane thing for you to do to say goodbye in a way that limited his suffering, even if it prolonged yours. It goes without saying, but I’m here for you if you need. <3

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s