April 5, 1998 - Sept 26, 2007
Unbelievably... Zor passed away in her sleep this morning. She was nine and a half years old.
Only yesterday she was playbowing with the others and challenging them all to a game of chase. Only yesterday, she did several of her routines of 'lean on me', pressing against me for a long moment for a hug, and ear scritch. She spent part of the day sleeping inside the house and poking me with her nose for attention intermittently. All business as usual.
Yesterday, when she was in the house, since she'd been a bit picky on her food recently, I offered her some chow and some meat trimmings. She didn't seem hungry for the chow but she took a few bites of it and took all the meat trimmings I offered. Then she went back to lay down in the other room.
At dusk, she was outside happily charging around with the other dogs, grinning and occasionally wuffing at imaginary unsavory characters that might be thinking of driving by. Everything seemed fine. When James was taking out trash and checking the gates late last night, she followed him around for snuggles and leans. Business as usual.
So, this morning, I was startled to find her laying on her side as if sleeping.
She was gone. :( :(
She was off her appetite for the previous weeks and was on the ribby side (an annual summer event with her), but no other sign of being unwell. She'd finish off all her chow - 3 days out of 5. And on the other two days, just eat about a cup full. So yesterday, she didn't seem different at all. As she is
getting a little older than the others, she gets probiotic via kefir, N'zymes and a little grated Parmesan cheese for aroma daily these days -- and yesterday, a shelled boiled egg, on her chow. She nibbled disinterestedly at chow, ate about half -- just wasn't hungry.
I have two of her daughters here and one son. Coco (girl) and Helmut (son) who are about a year old and then there's the older daughter, Ruya, who is 4.5 years. Boone (4.5 years) is unrelated to Ruya and he is well also - so I don't suspect a food issue. None have problems in appetites, none are finicky in the least, none seem to have problems keeping on weight - which had become Zor's lot over the past three years. We are feeding Purina One
since May this year - I changed to that one after all the other dog food craziness was going on. No one here as had a problem with Purina. When Zor was previously off her appetite, she seemed to love having Milk Bones
and sometimes that was all she would eat for a few weeks! But the past several weeks after a routine (for her) summer, she was eating less, 3 days out of 5, and was becoming ribby.L-R: Dylan and Zor as puppies. June 1998 photo - yes chickens cleaning the puppy bowl in the back!Zor at 6 months. Big knuckles... she was 96 pounds at 7 monthsZor at 4 or 5 years.Zor in 2003Zor, the Luv Bunny - 2006
Who does Zor love best? Well, it always seemed that if I were outside doing stuff with the dogs, if James showed up, Zor would be the first one by his side! She loved leaning
on him and taking head scritches from him. Above, you see her eyes closed and head tilted to him. Whenever I were out there, not quite so magnetic! She'd check to be sure she wasn't missing out on treats first, and then the other dogs would be able to 'own' me while she stood back waiting after the rush. Part of this may have to do with my habit of putting bug repellent on her when needed. She seemed to have decided that the routine was the same as "Zor Repellent" as far as she was concerned. James never did this nasty stuff to her so she has always gravitated to him quickly without the need to suspiciously check him out. Of course, the other dogs are fine on this with me, they don't like it, but they want to be there first! They're much less concerned of dabs of bug wipe being put on their ears and feet.
Yet having said that, if I called her and even if she knew she was going to get 'bug dabbed' she will still come... not on the first request, maybe she'd duck into a dog house first, but if I headed in her direction, she would stop and head toward me, looking resigned. Instead of anti-bug dabs, sometimes I just give her praise and a treat. :)Zor in the background, headshot of her daughter, Ruya, in the foreground.Zor with her litter of October 2006. Puppy Chaos!
As I write this, the loss still hasn't really sunk in. I keep falling apart momentarily, then feeling that she's NOT really gone.
She was so loyal and affectionate, yet fickle and suspicious about any change in routine. She was a wonderful mother to her two litters. We have two nice females from her, perhaps to carry on for the future. We have a pet son of hers who we are growing up right now, and he is absolutely a love. Zor has a page
listing some of her details. She has been a part of our breed diversity program and attained her AKC registration only in the last two years. More photos on her in this blog
are listed on the Zor label.
Zor, you are loved and missed. You will not be forgotten.