It seems like so long ago, and really it was. Oct 2012 Cookie was diagnosed with a brain tumor. We immediately started 16 rounds of Radiation therapy to temporarily stop it's growth and attack on her. And it did it's job for much longer than expected. We had been told the average was 8 months to 1 year. We made it well past that......Met and Exceeded.
But here's the thing, the average life span of a boxer is 10 years. Cookie lived just past 12 1/2. Once again, Met and Exceeded. But really, that's what her entire life was about, exceeding.
Cookie was born exactly 1 week after we were married, September 22, 2001. Nacho picked her out, or rather she picked him out.
Butterz - her furbrother who we adopted when they were about 4. And those 2 hit it off instantly.
But there was no mistaking it, Cookie was always The One!
As heartbreaking as Butterz's diagnosis and passing was, I think Cookie's was more gut wrenching. We were devastated when we got the news that she too had a brain tumor - very common in boxers by the way. But the good news was, hers was not as aggressive as his and we did have the option to seek Radiation Therapy. And you knew we would. As I have said in other posts during her last year and a half, we knew we got lucky with her. We've been on the other side before where luck was not so good. So we were grateful for every day we had with her.
In the last 5-6 months we began noticing the little signs that the tumor perhaps was back. Walking around in circles is a big clue. That went on for some time. Loss of balance became another. In her last few months we had resigned ourselves to carrying her up and down the stairs multiple times a day so she could go do her business in the yard. Between all the snow here and her balance issues, doing it on her own was not an option. We did not mind at all!
It was in the last 3 weeks the changes became more drastic. Her balance issues were becoming a problem inside the house. Not just tripping up or down the 3 steps inside the house, but bumping into walls, etc. In the last week, we noticed the BIG clue for a brain tumor: getting "lost" in corners. Often they will walk into a corner and just stand there, staring. She did a lot of that. More than that, she began to "panic" in those corners. She would freak out and try to climb up the wall in an attempt to get out of the corner. Not a good sign. For all we know this was a combination of the tumor and old age. Our concern now became that she was going to hurt herself when we were not there to help her.
Suffice it to say, her final weekend was when we knew we had to make a decision. We found blood in her stool and she had a seizure. This was only going to get worse. We could not let her live like that, that is not living. So we made the decision to let her go.
Don't think it's all sad stories though. Cookie was all about the happy remember.
She saw a lot in those 12 1/2 years:
A record flood
A record snow
A perfect life on the river