Fluffy and Pippa

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Fluffy, was a very special girl, she was a West Highland White Terrier (Westie).  I remember the first time I saw her, she was sitting in a corner with some little dachschunds… just sitting there looking at me with her big pink ears.  I picked her up and we bonded instantly. Her fur was fuzzy and wiry, she had the cutest dark big eyes and funny pointed little face. She was smaller than the size of my sneaker, I couldn’t put her down. We already had another dog, Piggy who was a rescure. Piggy was my daughter Rachel’s first dog. She was a beagle, dachschund, terrier mix and maybe more, she was white with black patches. We weren’t looking for another dog, because along with Piggy, we had a cat (another rescue), Toopee.

So we ended up bringing the little white, fuzzy Westie home. She was so cute and such a little baby. She would follow Piggy and somehow manage to climb up the stairs, but then at the top, she would sit and bark in her tiny little bark, until one of us would go up there and carry her down. That ended up being part of what she was. When she got older, she would never jump up on the sofa or bed, she would sit on the floor and paw at the sofa until someone would pick her up and put here up there. She loved sitting on pillows, like a little princess.  Piggy was not really interested in her, and I think that Toopee never even knew she existed… although Fluffy loved both Piggy and Toopee.

Fluffy and I always had a very special connection. Some may understand, and some may not, but it doesn’t matter, she was so special and so much a part of me.  She would sometimes look at me and start moving her mouth as if she was talking… I’ve never seen a dog do that, but it was as if she was really trying. She loved going in the car and loved going for walks. For some reason, during her last year, I noticed that she started getting very tired on her walks, I would have to carry her home, she would just stop and sit. I thought nothing of it, I just thought she was getting old. She also had a lot of eye allergies, or what we (including the doctor) thought was allergies. She was on eye drops often. It was her right eye that seemed to bother her most.

She was so pretty and so expressive. I photographed Fluffy and Bentley (her little White Mini Schnauzer brother) on December 8, 2012, during a photo shoot. She looked so normal and healthy and there was no indication of what would happen in the next couple of weeks.

Fluffy on December 8, 2012 and Bentley in the background

Fluffy on December 8, 2012 and Bentley in the background.  Fluffy always looked so happy.

Just about two weeks before Christmas, Fluffy was in the bedroom and couldn’t stop sneezing, and sneezing blood… so much blood coming out of her nose, she just couldn’t stop.   I took her to the doctor, thinking that she probably had polyps and it would be something easy to fix.  The doctor warned me that it could possibly be something more serious, but he would take some tests.   The tests for polyps, and whatever else, all came back negative, and in the meanwhile, Fluffy could not stop sneezing blood.  It came in spurts, but other than that she looked healthy and was happy.

We made an appointment for a specialist in Dallas to check her just after Christmas.  He kept her overnight and he results came back as a very aggressive and incurable form of nasal sarcoma.  She could possibly live a year if we took her for raditiation, or maybe 6 months if she went on chemo or maybe, possibly 6 months if she went on oral medication, which I can’t remember the name of anymore.    There was no guarantee for any of the treatments and there was no cure for it, so we decided to keep her comfortable and give her the oral medications. I also tried some Chinese herb to help stop the growth and the bleeding.   Well within a week or so of the diagnosis, her face started changing, the tumor was growing and she was swollen on her right side.   She was having trouble breathing, but she was still happy and had such a good attitude.  I spent so much time just holding her and being with her.

Towards the end of January, the tumor kept growing and her face was becoming deformed, her eye was so swollen, her nose was always covered in blood, and breathing was hard for her.  But she was still eating and as ok as he could be.  She was still bleeding when she sneezed and I had towels all over everything.  I wasn’t going to let her spend her last days in a crate, she was never in one before, so I couldn’t do that to her now. I kept old blankets on the bed so she could still sleep in the bed, it was her bed too and that’s where she always slept. I have a problem sleeping in a room with snoring, but for some reason, Fluffy’s snoring was comforting to me. She never snored before, but I guess that because the tumor was affecting her breathing, she would snore. I guess in a way, it made me know she was there.

The medicine she was on, should have allowed her to live maybe another four months or so and also to help reduce the symptoms and make her life more comfortable and the Chinese herbs she was on were supposed to help stop or reduce the bleeding, but they didn’t. The tumor was growing quickly, much quicker than the doctor expected. Towards the end of January, the doctor told us that it was time, she was suffering… this was the hardest decision to make.  I drove up to the house one morning on February 3, and looked up in the sky and i saw a cloud in the shape of a feather just over the driveway.  I saw it and had the strangest feeling, I knew it was time for Fluffy to go.   Then I went in the back yard and there was a dead leaf floating in the pool.. this all sounds so strange, but to me it was all signs.   All of the clouds in sky all moved away all day long just as clouds do, but the feather cloud hung over our house for the whole day.  I knew it was time.  The angels were telling me that she had to go.

So on February 7, we took her to the doctor and had to release her.   It still makes me so sad.  She was happy going to the doctor, she loved car rides, she didn’t know that this was her last day, but there was little choice left.  She could hardly breathe anymore.  I made sure to keep photos of her while she was sick, so I could never question this.  I won’t post these photos becuase it’s so sad to see her that way, I’d rather see the beautiful happy Fluffy that she always was,.  I look at the photos of her last month now and sometimes I think I even waited too long. So on February 7, 2013, Fluffy left us and went with the angels.

Bentley was now an only dog, he would sometimes just sit and stare into space, he never did that before. He was different, he was quiet and we thought he missed Fluffy. I had such trouble getting over this, so my cousin suggested that I call a pet psychic, she called her and the psychic helped her to when her cat died. I know, so many people don’t believe, but that’s ok.

I called Agnes,the pet psychic on February 23.  It was a little odd for me, I’ve never done this before. Agnes (the psychic) contacted Fluffy and he said she was very happy in a pretty garden chasing butterflies.

She asked Fluffy how she felt during her last few weekd, she said (only the psychic kept referring to fluffy as a “he” instead of  a “she”) that she couldn’t breathe and her tongue was always dry.  She felt like there was a pressure.  When she would breathe in it would hurt her rib bones and her stomach (Agnes had no way of knowing that Fluffy also had a mass on her ribs and in her stomach that we decided not to check because of the finality of the nasal sarcoma diagnosis).   Agnes also had no way of knowing that Fluffy’s liver enzymes were elevated (she was on meds for that for about a year) and she said that there was a tumor near her liver.  I don’t know if it’s related or not, but it was interesting.

Agnes went on to say that an angel accompanied us to the doctor to help Fluffy get another body.  The angel had white wings and a huge halo aura, she was wearing a white gown and was kissing and loving her. Then Fluffy flew through the ceiling and went into a cloud.

She was greeted at  a flower garden by a gray haired man, 5’11” who died in his 60’s.  I couldn’t think of anyone, the only person I could come up with was my father who died in his 80’s… so this kind of threw me off on everything she was saying about the man  (later on, I realized it was my Uncle Donald!  Of course, I don’t know why I didn’t think of him)

Agnes said that Fluffy has been by the house since she died and will stay for 2 weeks and then will say goodbye to Bentley, she will only be here until the end of the month.  (Interesting, because I have seen Bentley just sit and stare at what seems like nothing.  Then Fluffy will go into a deep sleep and will stay with the gray haired man is.

Then Agnes said that when she wakes up from her sleep, Fluffy would like to live some more.   She had a very happy life.    She will be sleeping at the gray haired man’s house, which looks like an English Tudor.  The gray haired man is very happy and there are many things to do there, there is a small lake behind the house with a boat, no oars or motor, just a boat.

Fluffy will return in a dream of mine as a puppy, but not necessarily a puppy that looks like her.  At the time of my dream, the puppy will be 2 wks old, her eyes will be open and she will be the same, she will be a Westie and she will be a girl. Fluffy wants me to call her “Fluffy Too” (or did she mean, Fluffy also… but Agnes said the name should be Fluffy Too and spelled out TOO).  She will be in a litter, not more than 100 miles away.   I will know her the minute I see her from looking into her eyes, the same way I knew that Fluffy was mine when I saw her.

Then Agnes asked to talk to Bentley,  but I didn’t put her on speaker phone for him to hear her.  She told Bentley that Fluffy will come back, some time around May or June, she will look the same but she will be much smaller because she will be a baby.  She told Bentley that Fluffy said she loves him and the whole time that Agnes was speaking, Bentley was looking at the phone with his ears back as if he was confused but listening, it was something that you just had to see to understand.

I wasn’t sure what to make of it, … but there were so many things that hit home. Then on February 26, I had a vision of Fluffy.

I woke up early that morning… Bentley was sitting up at my feet looking at me…  his ears were standing straight up (as always) but it was Fluffy as a baby looking at me, it was not Bentley’s face at all… (when she was a baby she had big ears that stood straight up with a skinny face)… that’s what I saw this morning..    Then Bentley walked closer to me and the little Fluffy changed into him…  It was comforting…  (that was not the puppy in the dream though, because I was fully awake and it was just different… I think that maybe it was Fluffy getting ready to leave after her 2 wks here).
Then on 3/18 had a dream of Westie puppies… and in the dream, I went to pick the puppy up…

Bentley seemed lonely and the words of the psychic haunted me.  I had to get another Westie for both Bentley and Fluffy.

I found some Westie puppies on a Westie website on the internet.  I called the lady and there were none available because they were all promised to someone else.  Then a few days later, the lady contacted me and said that one was available, we could come by and look at them to see them.    The lady was about 90 miles away from us in Breckenridge.  (the psychic told us that the new puppy would be about 100 miles away). We went, and saw all the little girl puppies and picked out one that seemed to be perfect.   A few weeks later when they were old enough we went to pick her up and bring her home and now we have little Miss Pippa Middleton andFluffyToo..

Something really interesting, one day, not too long ago, I realized that the day that I saw the feather over the house (I have photos of it and the date is recorded on them), that was the day that little Pippa was born.  It was as if the Angels brought her to us that day so that Fluffy could leave.

So this week in February, is always a week of very mixed feelings and brings a lot of reflection. It’s the week of a birth and a death… Pippa’s birth was Feb 3, 2013 and Fluffy’s last day with us was Feb 7, 2013.

Thank you all for reading this!

Laura