It is so difficult having an aging pet. Teddy is now over 12 years old. That's 84 in people years. The tip of her proud Chow tail is bald. She has a lot of trouble going up and down steep stairs in the house. We have to go up behind her and down in front of her just in case she stumbles so we can catch her. Quite a few years ago she refused to get in the car to go to parks and on long drives. Her world started to shrink. She occasionally will go an a short walk in the neighborhood but they are less frequent. We have had horrible heat and humidity so she mostly spends her days laying on the cool stone floor in front of a fan.
One thing she does enjoy, is walking down to the upper pond to get a drink. Nothing like a good shot of pond water. She has stopped gong all the way down to the lower pond because it is a long trek back up for my old girl. So, innumerable times a day we go out for a drink. She slowly descends the steps.
She mows through my hostas to get to the pond.
She carefully positions herself to get a drink. We scrub that stone she is standing on with a wire brush to get rid of the algae so that she doesn't take the log jammer ride.
Hi Teddy, I'm talking about you.
She very carefully turns herself around watching her footing so she doesn't slip.
Then she has to dry her paws off because Chows hate having wet paws. First the left one.
Then the right one, this never varies.
Time to water the ivy because who doesn't have to pee when they just had their feet in water?
Once Chows pooh or pee, they run for the hills.
Why this is, I will never know.
But even at her age, she is a blur as she heads back home.
She does stop for a rest partway up the steps.
By the time she reaches the upper garden, she is panting.
However, do you see how she is turning her head here? She smelled something. Perhaps a bad kitty? What you don't see is that she spun around, flew down the step and across the rocks heading into the woods. I followed screaming and reached to grab her which made her turn around and snap at me. She was separated from whatever the unknown smell was by the pond and thought twice about diving in to get there. Plus I had two handfuls of hair that I was hanging onto and was trying to pull her back so she wouldn't get hurt on the rocks. Jesus. Could you hear me screaming from where you are?
She reluctantly gave in and came home, both of us panting. Maybe slowing down a little isn't such a bad thing. I don't need this kind of excitement in my life anymore.