Farewell Cowboy, My Friend - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 02:48 AM Thread Starter
Skeezix's Avatar
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Location: North Missouri, via Alabama
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Farewell Cowboy, My Friend

This afternoon, my wife and I had to make the tough decision to put to sleep the most totally loyal dog I've ever known. Cowboy came into our hearts 2 years and 4 days ago from the local Humane Shelter. My wife saw him on their Facebook page and I went to check him out. He was 13 years old, and had been picked up as a stray, but the Animal Control Officer knew the dog's history. When the dog's original owner, also elderly, had to go into a nursing home, his dumbazz son just dumped Cowboy on the street, where he somehow survived for a year before being picked up.

When brought in to the shelter, he had a malignant tumor on his right foreleg, ears horribly infected with bacteria and yeast, bad gum disease, and had lost all of his undercoat and a lot of his topcoat due to the worst flea infestation the Shelter had ever seen. He had literally thousands of scabs all over his hide from flea bites.

But the old boy touched my heart. He was so sweet and well mannered that they had him running loose in the lobby of the Shelter, where he was meeting and greeting everybody and every animal that came and went. Wife and I decided that, even if he only had three months left, we'd try to make them three good, comfortable ones. Our vet did a wonderful job excising the tumor, cleaning out his ears, fixing his gums and teeth, and gave us medicated shampoo for his skin and coat. We nursed him and he thrived. He was a handsome, distinguished, charming old gentleman.

Griff and Zera, our other two German Shepherds (also rescues) welcomed him into the family also. There literally was never a cross word, or growl, or raised hackle, between them. He fit right in. He and Griff became close friends and did their daily "rounds" together, and hung out a lot together.

Griff even shared Mama with him.

Within four months, he'd grown an entirely new, shiny, plush coat and looked like a different dog. He totally bonded with me and became my constant shadow, making EVERY step that I made. There was also no doubt that he would have given his last breath to protect my wife and me, if needed.

Griff and Cowboy: A quiet evening in the "Bear Den" while Daddy plays on the computer.

Cowboy's favorite thing: To be out with Daddy and around folks. Down at the pond, our grandson in the background, the next door neighbor's son with the bluegill. Cowboy supervising.

The world class moocher at work on Mama, an easy mark:

We had been noticing him slowing down the past few weeks, and took him in for a checkup. His blood work was perfect and everything seemed okay, so we decided, that at age 15, he was just showing his age and the slowdown was normal. But, the grandkids were here last week and he loved it. He and the other dogs (and kids) played and romped with abandon. They had a ball. He ran and played like a puppy.

But Saturday evening, we noticed he seemed to be having more trouble than usual getting up on his feet. Sunday things went downhill fast and we ended up at the vet's Sunday night and had to leave him there. Today, things continued to deteriorate, and X-rays and more in-depth tests revealed that he was full of gastrointestinal cancer. He was whining in pain and suffering, couldn't get his back legs to work, and losing control of his bowels and bladder. We couldn't let that continue to happen to our friend.

We put him on a stretcher and carried him out to a beautiful shady glade next to a park behind the vet's office. We spent some time loving and petting him and gave him some cheese treats that he loves. Then, he left this world cradled in our arms, his handsome old head nestled in my hands, hearing the voices he loved encouraging him and telling him how good he was and how much he was loved.

Farewell Cowboy... You were a GREAT dog! I love you and I'll miss you. But, I know in my heart that I'll see you again, at the right time.

Rescued GSD's: Zera, 8, 04/06
Griff, 7, 11/06

Waiting near Rainbow Bridge:
Bo, my heart and soul mate & best buddy, 9, 4/19/99 to 3/21/09
Buddy, 5, 12/04 to 9/10
Niffi, almost 3
Rex, age 11 or 12
Gus, age 17
Peepers, age 17
Cowboy, age 15, 7/14/14
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 03:05 AM
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Location: Dayton NV
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Aww man that just sucks so sorry. But you know you guys did right by him and gave him a wonderful end of life!

It sounds like it could have easily ended badly for him a very long time ago! You guys can hold your heads high you did great!
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 06:37 AM
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I am sorry for your loss You given Cowboy the life he deserved, and he knew the love you shared. Rest In Peace old boy...

"A House Is Not A Home Without A German Shepherd"
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 06:56 AM
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rest in peace you beautiful, beautiful boy.

thank goodness he crossed your path and touched your heart. i am so very sorry for your loss.

take good care and many blessings.

mom to the cashman
the rescues...jeni-take-a-ride, and the c-monster
shangri la's seraphina blue (RIP 8/1/15)
hearthside's cinderfella (RIP 4/20/09)
shep von bellefontaine (RIP 6/9/10)
cricket (african grey RIP 7/13)
voodoo lily (dsh RIP 8/15)
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 07:38 AM
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Rest in peace sweet old man.

So glad he had you guys Skeezix, he looked so well loved and happy. <3

Mom of: "Zelda"
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 07:44 AM
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What a touching story. You did right by old Cowboy. May he rest in peace.

Linus van Pelt Haus Juris CGC. My Sweet Babboo, born March 17, 2014.

Madeline Ronan Heart (Maddie) Dec 1997 -- November 22, 2013 Rescue GSD, Sable
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 07:50 AM
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I'm very sorry for your loss RIP Cowboy


My Pack:

Jasmine - Female Miniature Poodle - born Aug 15, 2010
Loker Delgado Von Stalworth - Male GSD - born Jan 26, 2012
Koda & Zazu - 7 year old male cats
Alex - Male Cocker Spaniel (rescue) - RIP Cuddlebug 2007-2010
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 09:21 AM
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My heart aches for you and your family. How wonderful it was for you to allow Cowboy to share his golden years with you. I hope in time you'll find yourself able to open your heart to another senior.

Hondo Von Dopplet L Bauernhof "Hondo"- GSD
Lilie's Tug McGraw "Tug" - Golden Retriever
Maggie - Mini Dachshund (Rescue)
Lonestar Pivo - Texas Blue Lacy
Ashe - Barn Cat
Katie / APHA
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 10:04 AM
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That was a beautiful tribute. I have been there and feel your pain. So very sorry for your loss. God speed Cowboy.
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-15-2014, 10:54 AM
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A beautiful boy. RIP cowboy. So sorry for your loss!
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