This is a post I never wanted to write. But I knew the day would come. We lost our sweet Goblin on Wednesday morning, July 31, 2013.
He had been in great spirits for months – playing with James, playing with my cousins and giving out his tons of kisses. But he was acting unusual Tuesday afternoon – he was lethargic and couldn’t get comfortable enough to sleep. I kept an eye on him – I thought maybe he was dehydrated. He had been to the groomer and he is always thirsty afterwards. I gave him water and he drank a ton of it. But a little bit later he got sick. I gave him more water and again he got sick.
I went to Whole Foods to get him some coconut water (he loves it and I thought it would hydrate him better with some potassium and electrolytes). When I came back his tail was wagging as it always is when I come home and he was happy to see me. But he still wasn’t comfortable. As the night went on I kept wondering if I should take him to the vet.
We all went to bed around 10pm and I kept the bathroom light on to watch him. He was just sitting up and not sleeping. He would put his head down from time to time but it only stayed down for a few seconds and he would sit back up again. I fell asleep for a little bit but around 11:30 I got up to give him some more water. He again got sick. I kept trying and around 2am we still weren’t sleeping. I was snuggling with him on the floor and just talking to him. I knew he would be okay. I knew he was just dehydrated.
He started to moan in pain a bit and I knew it was time to run to the emergency vet. I arrived around 2:30am and thank goodness no other clients were there. I was crying and upset. They rushed Goblin into the back and the vet came to talk with me. She said he was low on oxygen and his heart rate was very fast. They gave him pain medicine and something to slow his heart rate down and they put him in an oxygen crate. She said he was in serious condition and the outcome didn’t look good. I was so upset at this point – I thought he was just dehydrated and at this point I knew something was wrong. They did an Xray and found that he had two large tumors in his abdomen and one had ruptured. The blood wasn’t clotting either. They said they could do surgery but the results might only give him another few weeks. At this point he was a week shy of his 13th birthday and Chris and I decided it was time to let him go.
I was so heartbroken. I had no idea that this was going to be it. I knew he was getting older and I just wasn’t ready to let him go yet. I went in to say goodbye and as I walked around the corner and saw him resting in the oxygen crate I just said “Oh Lishy…” and started to cry. He was SO soft. The groomer had washed him and fluffed up his hair. I just kept petting him and crying. I had already emptied out two tissue boxes and as I started on the third box I knew I had to say goodbye and leave. When Duke died in December 2009 I had used up EVERY single tissue box at the vet and Chris told me we had to leave. When the vet and vet tech told me I could stay with him until 7:30am when they closed I told them they didn’t have enough tissues.
Since this post is in memory of my sweet Goblin I wanted to write about a few of my favorite nicknames for him with stories.
Goblin has never been a huge fan of kids because they scare him. When Goblin was a puppy we took him to PetSmart and we were training him to sit and wait while we looked at different aisles. I didn’t realize that a brat kid was behind him jumping on his big fluffy tail and running off. I kept asking Goblin to sit and the kid would run up and jump on his tail. I finally saw it happen but after a few times I think it left an imprint on Goblin and he was always afraid of high energy kids. Well, just a few days before Goblin died I was in South Carolina visiting my cousin Andrea, her husband Love and their two girls Ella Grace and Avery. I was a little worried about Goblin being fussy since he is getting older. But Ella Grace and Avery were falling all over him and he would just keep kissing them over and over. It was so sweet. One night I was out front with Ella Grace and she was sitting with Goblin. He kept kissing her and only stopped when James came back with the ball so she could throw it again. Then it was back to more kisses! Chris said that Goblin’s life challenge was to end up loving children and he did in the end.
Goblin always gets so much attention everywhere he goes. So many people come over and ask “what kind of dog is he?” and Chris started answering “A Big Brown Dog” a few years ago. It is funny – they always laugh and we explain he has a little bit of everything. He has Lab, Chow, Golden, etc. People always think he is a puppy, too. Just last week a girl that asked about him was shocked when I said he would be 13 in a few weeks.
I’ve been calling Goblin the “Crocodile” since James joined our family. Goblin’s secret to playing is he lets James (or before James, Duke) run to get the toy and as they are on the home stretch he then goes in for the attack and the toy. He knew not to waste his energy getting the toy because someone else would do that for him! James was playing with his new friend Buffy (she is a Mastiff puppy and her weight is three times that of James!) and they were having a great time. Goblin was just watching when all of a sudden he pulled his “Crocodile” move and snapped for the toy! James was always having to keep an eye out for him when he played with other dogs. Goblin used to do that with Duke, too.
I also call Goblin my “Flower Child” because anywhere we walk he finds the bushes with the most flowers and plows through it. He doesn’t tear up the bushes but he emerges the other end covered in flowers! When his hair is long he looks like a hippie dog all covered in flowers. Even with short hair the flowers would stick and be even more obvious. There is a purple flowering bush on one of our walks near our house in Orlando and that one was always his favorite. The flowers always remind me of the purple flowers that were in my prom corsage!
Another favorite name for him is G Man. We called Duke “D” and James “J” but for some reason Goblin had “man” added to his “G” making him The G-Man.
And my favorite nickname is Lishy. I will always remember walking around the corner at the emergency vet knowing it was goodbye and I just cried out “Oh Lishy…” Here is how Lishy has taken shape: My Dad started calling Goblin “Goober” when he was a puppy. I was not a big fan of “Goober” but it stuck. We were feeding Duke and Goblin Bil-Jac dog food at the time and one day we were looking around PetSmart for a new type of treat and there they were – a Bil-Jac bag of treats called Gooberlicious!!! We had never seen those before so we decided that Bil-Jac had made those just for Goblin. So I started to call him Gooberlicious. And from that just “Licious” and from that “Lishy” stuck. I even sometimes sing “Lishy Lou Who” to him haha.
Just now I decided to see if “Lishy” was even a real word. I looked on Google and right away Urban Dictionary came up as the first result. You never know what you are going to get on UD so I was a bit nervous. But I started to cry when I read the meaning:
n: a sweet person who emits nothing but pure love
adj: descibes an act of sweetness, love, and purity
Goblin would paw at me when he wanted something. Even just the other day he kept pawing at me in the car. I finally decided to pull over and let him go to the bathroom – and I was almost out of gas! It was perfect timing since I wasn’t paying attention to my gas gauge.
He loved to howl with the emergency vehicle sirens. And the first night we brought him home we had Goblin and Duke in our kitchen blocked with a baby gate. They were so little and they weren’t house trained yet. They weren’t even eating solid food yet! We woke up in the middle of the night to this cry/howl. As we peeked into the kitchen there was Goblin sitting up howling. Maybe he missed being under the shed where he was found. Maybe he was scared. But he started sleeping with us after that and he has preferred couches and beds ever since!
A few months ago we were visiting the Browns and Kirk was playing with James. He was sneaking up on him and hiding behind the chair and James was excited and anticipating him jumping out. We all were – Patty and Chris were watching Kirk, too. But no one had an eye on Goblin who was also watching with suspense. Finally, Goblin couldn’t take it anymore and “WOOF!!!” – we all jumped and looked at Goblin who was smiling and wagging his tail! He was the one that scared all of us – not Kirk!
I love that I trained Goblin to “Give me 10” and he taught James how to do it, too. James was always watching Goblin. James would bark at something outside and immediately look to see what Goblin was going to do. He followed Goblin around the yard and when they snuggled up together Goblin would rest his head on James.
Goblin was always curious and observant. He would walk around and smell everything! We would go on a walk and I was always saying “Come on Gobbie! Come on Gobbie! I am not going to get much exercise at this pace!” But he wanted to smell everything. And smell it for a good, long time. He was always watching the birds, squirrels, other dogs, etc. Just a few days ago we went to the park and as I threw the ball for James, Goblin just sat with me and watched all of the birds.
I miss him. I miss his crimped ears, his big puff “plume” tail, his white chest and his many kisses.
I love you Goblin.