Last week I was a MIA from posting new stories on the blog. I was saying goodbye to my beautiful boy Cody. It was one of those horrible, dreadful times that you know are lurking around the corner when you have an old dog. It was one of those weeks you try to mentally prepare for, but realize you’re not at all ready to deal with when it is actually happening. Cody passed away on Saturday, May 28, 2016.
As you may know, Cody has suffered from Inflammatory Bowel Disease for the past three years. During that time he went from a healthy 78lbs to an emaciated 58lbs. He was on a ton of different drugs to control the illness, but that’s not what caused his final problems. Cody began to have neurological problems early in the week and each day they progressively got worse. After three trips to our veterinarian we made the painful decision to stop his 13 year-old body from suffering.
Today I don’t want to dwell on those sad few days, but instead I want to talk about the good times we had during the eleven years he was part of my family.
Did you know I fell in love with Cody when I saw his picture? He was listed on the website of my rescue group, but when I contacted our adoption coordinator I found out that another family had already taken him home. Two months later his picture was posted again. He had been returned because of his great fear of men. I was excited to see he was available, but I was leaving on vacation and couldn’t bring him home until I got back. I made arrangements for him to wait for me and after 10 days he finally joined my family. I couldn’t wait for Sophie and Shadow to meet him.
Then it took nearly a year for Cody to warm up to the idea of living in the same house with my husband. His fear of men was incredible. We used to compare Cody to the movie 50 First Dates. It’s the film where Drew Barrymore has a type of amnesia that makes her forget everyone she met during the day, once she has fallen asleep at night. That was Cody. He would make friends with Ken during the day, but run out of the house when he saw him the next morning.
Once we got past that problem we discovered that Cody loved having jobs around the house. He went outside every morning to get the newspaper and he was on trash duty. He even helped me raise a litter of tiny feral kittens who are nearly 9 years-old today. And when I adopted Bailey in December 2014, Cody taught her how dogs act when they are part of a human family.
My boy also went to work with me as, “Delivery Dog”, when files and forms needed to be dropped at a client’s office. Cody was especially happy when our car trips took us to the bank because he would be treated to a biscuit for the hard work he did.
Cody was a good friend to his two older sisters Sophie and Shadow. He was Sophie’s loyal pal when she became paralyzed. Cody was the one who came up with new ways to play games with Sophie even though she couldn’t run in the yard with him.
One of Cody’s favorite times of the day was when we walked around our neighborhood. I know this is every dog’s favorite time of the day, but it always seemed a bit more special for Cody because he lived in a pen at the house of animal hoarder for the first two years of his life. Being able to freely walk and leave his mark “everywhere” was his great pleasure of the day.
Cody had lots of little quirks too. He hated sprinklers and would go out of his way to avoid them on a walk and he loved the homemade “frosty paw” desserts I made for him every night.
He was my protector (sometimes a little too eager) when a repair person came to the house and he couldn’t catch a ball if his life depended on it.
Cody was my beautiful boy and I will miss all of the little habits, likes and dislikes that made him a wonderful dog. But I think the habit I will miss most are Cody’s famous hugs. It didn’t matter if he was playing hard in the yard or hanging out on the other side of the house, all I had to do was open up my arms wide and call his name and Cody would come running at full speed for a big furry hug.