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Monday, September 21, 2009, ( 9 views ) - My thoughts - Posted by Emily

Today I was missing Newton a lot so I called up Mary, Newton's breeder, to see if I could go over to her house. She had one puppy left from her last litter so I wanted to get my puppy fix in and to see Newton's mom.

For being 7 years old, Kailie has the spunkyness of a puppy. When I got there, she was running figure 8's in the backyard. When Newton's litter was born, I was at Mary's house twice a week visiting the puppies, so Kailie got to know me very well. After seeing how much energy Kailie had, I know who Newton got it from. I use to always say that Newton was a Lab trapped in a Mastiff body because of all of the energy he had. So much for the couch potato.

I never knew how many of Kailie's traits Newton had until today. When I looked at Kailie's face, I saw a lot of the characteristics Newton inherited. He also got many of her mannerisms. It made me feel really good and I am glad that I went over to Mary's house. It is exactly what I needed.



Saturday, September 19, 2009, ( 10 views ) - My thoughts - Posted by Emily

Today my friend, Laura, and I headed up to Estes Park for the K9K Walk to Cure Canine Cancer. Since Newton's journey of healing and discovery came to a close, I felt that it was an important event to attend. I was glad that Laura was willing to go with me. Thank you Laura!

Since my back was killing me (a few ribs decided that they wanted to pop out of place), I didn't really feel like walking. We had an opportunity to visit the Bone Cancer Dogs booth and meet up with all of our friends from the yahoo group (Cindy, Wanda, Marc, Karen, Adrian, Stephanie, and Stephanie's mom) and some new friends. Stephanie even made me the most precious bandanna in honor of Newton. After Laura and I went through the booths and got our picture taken with a poster board of Gibson, the world's tallest dog, we headed to the park to get some pictures of the Elk prior to heading back to Denver.

We decided to stop for lunch at my favorite grilled cheese place, Southern Sun. Oh yeah, they have some really tasty beer too :-) Outside of my back killing me, it was a beautiful day and I am glad I went up to Estes.



Friday, September 11, 2009, ( 6 views ) - My thoughts - Posted by Emily

Today would have marked the 1 year anniversary of when Newton had his first Oncology visit at CSU. While I am doing a lot better than I would have thought, my heart still hurts badly. I'm trying to rejoice in Newton's life verses grieve in his passing...although sometimes that feels like it is easier said than done.

On the Bone Cancer Yahoo group that I am a member of, folks always talk about "Pennies from Heaven". When I came across the poem, I can't help buy smile.

It is called "Pennies from Heaven" by Charles Mashburn.

I found a penny today
Just laying on the ground
But it's not just a penny
This little coin I've found.

Found pennies come from Heaven
That's what my Grandpa told me,
He said, "Angels always toss them down."
Oh, how I loved that story.

He said, "When an angel misses you
They toss a penny down,
Sometimes just to cheer you up
To make a smile out of your frown."

So don't just pass by that penny
When you're feeling blue,
It may be a penny from Heaven
That an Angel tossed to you.

Last night I got a call from Rainbow Bridge Pet Crematorium. They just wanted to let me know that the picked up Newton. I had CSU do an autopsy so that we could find out a little bit more about how much his cancer had spread, so that the vet students at CSU could have the opportunity to work on a larger dog, and so that some of his tissue could be added to the tissue bank for future research.

I also received Newton's paw print today. The Argus Institute is an amazing group of people who have helped me get through a lot. Thank you to everybody up at CSU!

Newtie...I miss you and love you very much!!!!




Wednesday, September 9, 2009, ( 21 views ) - Diagnosis - Posted by Emily

Rarely do I find myself at a loss for words...here I sit...staring at a blinking cursor wondering where to begin. What can one say about somebody who has taught me unconditional love, how to stay strong when the chips are down, to embrace each day, and to live life to the fullest. While Newton's registered name is Divine RR Lucky Lounge Lizard, I am the lucky one. I got to share my life with such an incredible boy.

Yesterday, Newton got his angel wings. It wasn't something that I was expecting to have to do, but it was his time. Over the past week, Newton just wasn't quite himself. His energy level was down and he wasn't eating much. Anybody that knows Newton, knows that he is a very picky eater. Unless there were some tasty mix-ins in his kibble, he just wouldn't eat. I think his record was 3 days before I broke down and added some mix-ins. So while his lack of interest in food caught my attention, it was his lack of motivation to acknowledge those around him that gave me cause for concern. Rarely does Newton allow somebody in his house without barking at them. On Monday, he just let people in without even lifting his head. I knew something was up.

While Newton was getting his chest x-rays done, Dr. Perry came out and told me that Newton's belly felt enlarged and recommended that we do an ultrasound. Newton's blood work, x-rays, and ultrasound reported findings that I wasn't quite ready to hear. His red blood cell count had dropped 10% since his visit July 23rd, there were a couple of tumors visible in his lungs, several large tumors in his spleen, and his belly was full of blood. While Dr. Perry indicated that his condition wasn't critical, he did say that Newton did not have much time. Since I knew there were a ton of people who would want to say their good-byes, I asked Dr. Perry if I could help Newton cross the bridge on Friday, September 11th. September 11th marked the 1 year anniversary of Newton's first Oncology visit at CSU where his Osteosarcoma was pretty much confirmed. Just as Dr. Perry and I finished discussing this (he didn't think that there would be a problem with Friday), he got a page and left me in the room looking at Newton's x-rays and ultrasound and feeling quite overwhelmed. When Dr. Perry returned, he indicated that the page was regarding Newton and that he was having a hard time getting up after the ultrasound. At that point, I realized that I may have to let my baby go sooner rather than later.

When they brought Newton into the room with me, I knew that it was time. He no longer had the spring his step that I saw just a few hours earlier and the look in his eyes...he was telling me that he was ready. During our last few moments, Newton and I took a walk down memory lane...talking about how he:
  • Was my favorite the first time I laid eyes on him when he was 3 days old.
  • Picked me. I thought it was so cute when he would protect me from the puppy acupuncture by barking at his siblings. Little did I know that his bark would pretty much scare the crap out of everybody for the rest of his life.
  • Taught Chloe, a 4 year old rescue, how to play. It took him almost 6 months (going to the dog park every weekend), but he finally wore her down. I'm glad that they got to play with each other over the holiday weekend.
  • Inspired others with his story as a 3-legged "big dog" and contributed to understanding more about this disease.
  • Made me feel so very special. I could be gone for 15 minutes and he would come running up like I had been gone for a week.
  • Was going to have so much fun being pain free and getting to romp around with all of his friends that passed before him.

While he may not be here in body, I know that he is here in spirit. And I have to chuckle when I think about the day he picked to cross the bridge...9-9-09. Not many people know the story behind how he got his registered name. I had chosen the name Newton because that is my favorite scientist. My breeder wanted a Vegas theme for the AKC registration of Newton's litter. While the Lounge Lizard refers to Wayne Newton . I picked Lucky Lounge Lizard because when you turn the first letters over, you get 7-7-7...my winner! He is my lucky boy and he will forever have a very special place in my heart.




Thursday, September 3, 2009, ( 13 views ) - Treatment - Posted by Emily

Over the past couple of days, Newton hasn't seemed like himself. His energy level is down and he doesn't seem to want to eat any of his food. He is starting to worry me a bit.

My friend, Tracy, is moving to New Mexico. To help send her off, Laura and I decided that we wanted to make her a picture collage of all of the fun times that we have had. Since alcohol would most likely be involved as we talk about all of the fun times we had, Laura decided that she would stay the night.

Laura has Chloe, a English Mastiff, that she got through rescue. Laura, Chloe, Newton, and I all started going to the dog park each weekend when Newton was 6 months old. Since most of Chloe's childhood was spend in an airline crate, she really didn't have a puppyhood. Newton was bound and determined to change all of that and would do his best to try to get her to play with him. After 6 months, he finally wore her down and she started to play with him. Newton was full of energy and having the time of his life. I'm glad that he has such a special friend to hang out with.



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