Write Again … Remembering Max, the wonder dog

Published 12:42 am Tuesday, August 2, 2011

When my First Wife and Best Friend wrote this, she did not intend for it to be put before the public. It was just for her collection of memories. Very reluctantly she gave in to my entreaties.

Max came to live with us in April 2005. He was from Florida … a Florida gator! Mary Bart had told us his story, and it was a sad one. He was a diabetic dog, and she was having a hard time finding that special home for him. We agreed to give it a try, knowing in our hearts he would be ours forever.

Bartow drove to Brunswick, Ga., for the pick up. That was a good halfway point for Mary Bart who lives in West Palm Beach, Fla. Besides, there was a motel there that would take pets. So it was arranged, and they met, and Bartow brought Max to his new home the following day.

Max was greeted by two Boston terriers, Meg and Beau. Meg decided she was going to like her new brother.

Beau had some other thoughts. Our two boys decided to “un” like each other. So we managed for a while, and then we lived in lock-down situation. That means one male dog is out and the other is in another room … out of sight and out of mind, so to speak. It worked, and we adjusted, and so did the two male dogs. Our Meg was pleased with one brother at the time.

We learned to give Max his insulin shots and keep things regulated. We were on a schedule for sure. Insulin every 12 hours or as close to it as possible.

Max had special food with lots of fiber in it. Things went smoothly for many years. When Max came to live with us, we had no idea exactly how old he was, and Max wasn’t telling either. He was a medium-size dog with a pretty black coat. As the years slipped by, he got a gray beard, which was becoming to him. He loved to play ball and would also bring it back for another throw-and-catch time. He liked to run in the pen as round and round he would go.

Max was such a good boy. His room was the den, which had a couch, chair and his bed to choose from for a nap. He never messed up his room! That was his space, and he loved it.

As the years went by, we would notice he was slowing down a little bit. He took longer naps and shorter walks.

I guess this is normal for an older fella. Some days, he had “spells,” as we called them, when his sugar level would be off. Then he got special treats until he was better and seemed normal again. We went to see his favorite vets, and staff, especially Laura. Max never had to wait long for some attention. Once the insulin was regulated, Max was fine. We were so fortunate Max only had three days that he didn’t feel well. The diabetes was taking a toll on his body, and we had to say goodbye to our good boy on June 22. That was a sad day for us, but a good day for Max because he didn’t have to feel bad anymore, and he could run and play and not get tired. I have to believe that he crossed over the Rainbow Bridge that day.

The next week, I had a dream about Max. I looked out the back window in my dream and saw Max. He wasn’t in the pen, but was looking in. He was black without any gray, and young looking with his blue collar on. He looked around the yard as if for one last time and trotted off toward the back field. Maybe he came back to say goodbye. I am glad I was looking out the window in my dream. I feel good about him, and I hope he and Meg, Buster, Susie, Moses, Blue and Micki are all in a happy place with green fields with lots of good places to mark their spots.

But … we miss our good boy.