If you follow my instagram and twitter, then you have seen that our dog Patience died recently and it was really tough on me this week. I cried a lot. Patience was the dog that I bought right out of high school when I worked at a pet store. Rob paid for half of the payment and I paid for the other half. She was a runt but was already four months old when we bought her. She looked like she was only two months old. She was so very sweet and quiet unlike the other Shetland Sheepdog I had already named Precious (who was my childhood friend basically).Patience lived in my bedroom in her first couple of years of life. I trained her and raised her (she was potty trained in a day, because she was that smart and I didn’t need to use a leash with her). She followed me everywhere and was always on my lap or by my feet. Precious was also always with me too (my shadow) and the two of them got along very well, but Precious died when Patience was only a year old.
When Rob and I got married, we still lived at my parents’ home, down in their basement. Patience loved being able to snuggle even more with Rob than she had before because he was already her daddy, but he was there more often. He was her favorite and would get the most excited hanging out with him (and did this intense full body wag where her tail and the lower half of her body would move side to side in joy). He used to try to make her bark all the time, which she never did at all. Suddenly she started barking at a year and a half old and he thought it was cute until she became the new Precious, barking at anyone who came to the door and not stopping with her barking if a person was around. Otherwise she was the best.
We moved a couple months before I became pregnant. Patience was so good with Leto when he was born. We were really worried about how she’d behave around a baby. I was wondering if she’d feel like Lady from Lady and the Tramp, but we made sure to continue to have her treated as always, with affection and attention. When I was pregnant with Micah we decided to move to a bigger place with two bedrooms instead of one. The new landlord told us we couldn’t bring our dog with us. I was so sad. Patience was our baby! I tried to plead with him about it but he stood firm about not having dogs or any animal other than goldfishes or something small like that.
She went back to live with my parents who had never actually spent time with her ever before because she was always either in my bedroom or following me to go outside to go to the bathroom. I was really nervous about this transition for her. When we had lived in our one bedroom apartment when Leto was a baby, we went to Maine for a few days to visit our friends Christian, Emilee, and their firstborn who is a few months older than Leto. We asked my parents to dog sit for us. We dropped Patience off at their house and when we got back it turned out she had run away for a few days and was found a town over trying to find us. It was good she was found and brought to a shelter.
When the final transition to live with my parents went through, I saw her every week anyway (we live four minutes from my parents’ house), but it was not the same at all. I was used to her sleeping in our bed every night! My parents didn’t snuggle with her hardly as much as we did. She was used to being on our laps which they never allowed. My dad smokes and she developed a bad cough. Her dishes were barely ever washed and so I scrubbed them every time that I went over their house. Last year she was attacked by a deer who stomped on her and put a hole in her side that took a few months to fully heal (and she bled a lot). She had developed a lump or two on her body as well in her last couple of years. I just don’t believe she was well taken care of by them and I now feel regrets of ever moving where we are now because she would have received better treatment and love with us.
A few days before she died my mom told me that Patience had stopped eating and was throwing up. She tried to run away when I was over. I opened the door and let her be by herself as she has always done, as she knew her boundaries. I think she was going to find a place to die. She hadn’t tried to run away outside of that one time (which was years ago now), and since I was actually there that day, I think she was trying to communicate with me that she was going to be gone for good. As I left, I said my goodbyes to her on the spot. I also scolded her saying, “Don’t you run away to die, Babygirl, okay? If you die, you will do it here!” She licked me one last time, did her best to look at me with her bad vision, she couldn’t hear me anyway because she developed deafness in her last year. She did obey me. A couple days later my mom called me in the morning to tell me the bad news of Patience’s death. She died peacefully in her “spot” where she slept daily. My dad buried her in their yard next to their dog Holli who died two years ago. Patience would have been 14 in .
Nicknames we had for Patience: Patty, Pat-E-N-C, Babygirl, Little Lady, Pupperoni, Little Puppers, Puppers, Pati Ence, The Doggy, and The Lithping Taco (she had a little gap between her teeth and so we assumed if she could talk she’d lisp and couldn’t say lisp without a th – poor thing . . .and she looked like a hairy chihuahua slightly so she was like the taco dog. . .)