Our Beloved Dog, Cooper


Typically, I post on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. They are always about writing, but today I will make an exception. 

On Christmas Day our beloved dog, Cooper, grew ill, weak, and just not himself. By the next morning, we knew something was very wrong. A trip to the animal emergency vet revealed his spleen had ruptured, more than likely due to cancer or a tumor, and there was nothing we could do. He was bleeding internally and would be gone within 24 hours.

With very heavy hearts, we had to put him down.

My husband and I have been married for 9 1/2 years, and had our dog for eight of those. Though my husband had dogs all his life, he was my first.

He was an Australian Shepard/Border Collie Mix, adopted from a shelter, and by far one of the smartest dogs I’ve ever encountered. He could sneak out of a camping tent while we were asleep, open the sliding glass door when we didn’t move fast enough to let him outside, and once even kept would-be burglars at bay until the cops could arrive. And, he was the first one at the bathroom door when my water broke with my twins. My husband was sleeping, and I sent Cooper in to retrieve him. Later, my hubby would say he was woken up with urgent whining and a sloppy tongue on his cheek.

As if watching him take his last breath on the day after Christmas wasn’t hard enough, we then had to return to our home and tell our worried four-year old twins that Cooper wouldn’t be returning.

Our house, and our hearts, are quiet and sad.

I hope to see you back at my blog on Wednesday, where I will again post about writing.


11 thoughts on “Our Beloved Dog, Cooper

  1. Oh, my heart goes out to you. We had to put our beloved pug, Igor, down in August and I still miss that little guy. My daughter gave me a photo book of his life for Christmas and I started crying the minute I opened it. But, and this is a big but, we also just adopted two cats from our local Humane Society. So eventually there will be room in your heart for a new pet. In the meantime, my thoughts are with you.

    • Charlotte,
      Thank you so much. I’ve just posted a picture of him. We do eventually plan to get a puppy (probably sooner rather than later) once the sad goes away. Although, our twins are wanting one right away 🙂

  2. I’m so sorry, Christi. My wife and I are animal lovers too, we have two dogs of our own and one cranky old cat. They are indeed our “children.”

    When I met my wife she had an Irish Setter that she’d had for most of her adult life. A short time later, I was in the military and had gone overseas while she moved our home across the country by herself. During this time her Setter suffered greatly from a sudden onset of what was described to me as “Canine Leukemia.” It was very hard for her to watch and the decision to euthanize the poor thing was agonizing for her. Meanwhile, there was nothing I could do for her but send consoling emails and phone messages.

    Sometimes I think it’s harder to deal with the passing of an animal than it is to deal with the passing of a life-long friend or relative, simply because the animal’s affection is so blind and unconditional. It’s something about that kind of unmitigated trust that makes it so much more painful. At least, that’s the way it seems to me.

    But I realized a long time ago that you have to focus on the life of joy, comfort, and well-being that you provided for them. Especially for a rescued pet. So take heart, Christi, and remember that you brought just as much light and love into Cooper’s life as he brought into yours. Then, when you’re ready, take another trip down to the shelter, just to see what’s what.

    Take care.

  3. Thank you so much for your kind words. He was found dumped in the woods when he was only five weeks old, and we got him at eight weeks old. Since he survived on his own in the woods, when we first got him he only wanted to eat leaves and sticks 🙂

    My husband and I have really focused on all we did provide for him; he swam in lakes and hiked trails in four different states, and accompanied us on every single road trip/vacation and went for countless drives in our convertible.

    We’ll get a puppy probably soon, our twins are already asking :).

    Thanks again,

  4. You have my deepest sympathy. And I can promise you that your Cooper has at least one fur-friend to romp around the great beyond with as I just lost my little old calico lady cat two months ago. Havilah arrived on the back of a flatbed with a load of alfalfa hay eight years ago. Appropriately named Alfalfa she was a middle-aged cat even then. After a year in our barn she moved into the house and received a new name (Havilah) from my mother. She died peacefully at home and was happy until the last. I don’t know what her life was like before she came to our house, but I know that the last eight years of her life were full of happy chaos. 🙂

  5. Christi, I’m so sorry. My heart is with you and your family. Such a lovely dog.

    We had to put down our little chow hound after she suffered a major seizure, a few years ago.

    It’s sad. Take time to grieve.

  6. Christi,

    Scott and I are so sorry to hear about Cooper. He was a great dog and I know how much you all loved him. Daisy will surely miss the visits with her Oregon playmate. Take care and we’ll talk with you soon.


  7. I just clicked over from ‘Pimp My Novel’, intending to find your ‘Part two’, but I came to the title and picture on this post and couldn’t go any farther.

    Before commenting further I need to give you some background: I’ve been a ‘dog person’ all my life, always had a dog as a child and then ended up breeding, training and showing Shelties for 35 years. Our children grew up always having a minimum of two dogs around. Everyone one of our dogs has been precious, including the Labrador pup that our daughter acquired while she still lived at home. When she married the Lab went with her and has been there thru the arrival of her two children who are now 3 and 5 and adore “Ebby”. But Ebby is getting very old and frail. It’s a matter of time, and it will be heartache like none other in our lives when she goes. Ebby was my daughter’s first “child” and it’s hard to explain how attached she is to her.

    In early December my daughter and her husband decided it was time to add a puppy companion to the household to help ease the coming transition. Ebby enjoys the new puppy and even though she has days when she can’t muster the energy, some days she romps around the yard with him like a much younger dog than she is.

    Why your post struck me is that the puppy they bought in December is an Australian Shepherd and they named him “Cooper”! In all of our dogs none of us has ever had an Aussie before nor known a dog with that name. My daughter said it just popped into her head and seemed right for him. Such a coincidence!

    Anyway, I know from personal experience that losing a lifelong companion like your Cooper is almost as painful as losing a child. He would have been very much a part of your family and I just wanted to say how very sorry I am. It may not be any comfort to you, and I don’t really know why I think it should be, but I thought you might like to know that there is a brand new Aussie/Cooper now established in a very loving home in Western Canada.

    Blessings to you.

  8. Pingback: Surgery a Success!!! « Christi Corbett's Blog

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