Today we had to say goodbye to our Little Buddy, Chance. He was an NCBR foster fail. I feel like my heart has been ripped from my chest. Chance’s body had finally given up on him, his bright, big brown eyes lost their sparkle. He was exhausted. He was diagnosed 2 years ago with degenerative myelopathy, which is essentially the K9 form of Lou Gehrig disease/ALS, which over time destroys his mobility, starting with dragging the back legs slowly moving forward. I remember when we got that diagnosis, we felt so cheated. The universe was simply not fair! We adjusted so that he would be comfortable and that he could still do everything he was used to as the disease slowly took his mobility. At one point he had a wheelchair and we also pulled him around in a cart so that he could continue his adventures with us. For the last few months, Shane carried him everywhere, carried him out to potty, carried him to and from the car, up and down the stairs… Shane loved him so much, it was so beautiful to see his love for Chance. He did everything for that little dog.
Chance was found Christmas 2012, in the hills above El Sobrante, found to be a stray for 2 1/2 years! He was a survivor. He had been burned and shot at and was severely malnourished, among a whole host of other issues. He had been through hell. A little over 6 years ago I picked him up as a new foster, he stood on the backseat of my car and placed his little paw on my shoulder and just looked at me with those big, brown eyes… he knew he was finally safe and I knew he was never leaving us.
From that moment on, we made it our mission to make up for the previous years of when he was living outside and on the streets, and that we did! He fit in so well with Guinness and Roxy, he was playful and so sweet. He loved to snuggle with his new fur family and with us. He went everywhere with us! Every dog-friendly restaurant, every dog-friendly winery, every park… Chance has gone to more wineries and breweries than most humans! He was such a ladies man too, girls found him irresistible. And who wouldn’t? He’s a doll!
One side effect of him being a stray for so long was that he HATED to be outside. We had a magnetic screen door so the dogs could go in and out freely while I worked from home, and the day that he finally walked through the screen door, all on his own, to go lay in the sun, was such a miracle! I took so many pictures of that moment, it was a huge milestone for him.
He spent the last 3 summers on our boat with us, he had become such an internet sensation that customers starting calling us to request that he be brought on their cruise. We, of course, obliged.
We will miss you running on the beach in Carmel, your adorable trot down the dock to your boat, your gentle nature when our nephew walked you around the old neighborhood and the incredible excitement you had when we got home! That rabbit/frogger sprint across the living room floor was hilarious!
I really could go on and on. This boy has touched our hearts so much that I can’t even convey how broken we feel right now. He lived to be almost 12 1/2 but we only had him for 6 short years, it was just not enough. I do know that he was able to go in peace from the comfort of our home and that was very important to us. Thank you NCBR for rescuing him and bringing him into our lives. God speed Little Buddy, I know that you’re playing with your BFF, Guinness, over the Rainbow Bridge.