Freya is the perfect choice in Loki’s absence
The impending death of our 12 year-old family dog Loki was just too sensitive a topic for an Enterprise column, my wife told me shortly after the column appeared in print back on Jan. 5. At the time, I was contemplating how much our family life would change after we lost Loki — which we fully expected would happen this year.
This past winter we knew Loki was having more and more trouble staying steady on his feet and making it outside in time to avoid making a mess indoors. His eyesight was failing, he was in pain, his allergies were bothering him more than usual, and car rides to the vet were becoming increasingly frequent. The vet visits were especially hard because Loki really disliked riding anywhere in a car — it made him sick.
A German shepherd — huskie mix, Loki was the puppy we found at the Cherryland Humane Society shelter when our two children were 5 and 3-years-old. Loki grew up with the kids. He also grew up with a couple of cats he seemed to regard as siblings. Loki was exceptionally smart and sweet.
We finally put Loki to sleep on May 1. One of our closest neighbors happens to be a veterinarian. He and his wife made a house call; and one couldn’t ask for a better experience under the circumstances. My wife, a registered nurse with a background in critical care, noted that Loki ended up dying more peacefully, with less pain and more dignity, than many human patients.
We always knew we’d get another dog. Our two children are still at home — but not for much longer — and they missed Loki as much as we did.
We all understood how much easier it would be to take a vacation after school got out last month if we didn’t have to worry about what to do with a dog. So, we did take a little trip down south in June (in the “off” season when you can take such a trip a little more cheaply) to show the kids New Orleans and a few other destinations along the Gulf Coast.
When we got back, however, we knew what our first order of business would be. Actually, my wife knew exactly what she wanted to do immediately upon our return — fill the void left in our lives when we lost Loki, and find a new dog.
Apparently, my wife was checking around online and ended up visiting the Cherryland Humane Society shelter one day after her shift ended at Munson. Of course, she immediately found “the” dog, and breathlessly phoned me at home to let me know.
I insisted that my wife come home, sleep on it, and let the kids and I visit the shelter and the dog in question the very next morning when the shelter reopened.
Of course, my wife was absolutely right as usual. The German shepherd-boxer mutt she’d met at the shelter was perfect for us. The kids and I named her Freya, and brought her home the day we met her. Freya was at her new home waiting for her new mom as soon as mom got home from work that day.
Mom, by the way, has given me permission to write about this.
Freya really is perfect. Exceptionally smart and sweet, our new puppy quickly made it over the house-training hurdle, and became good friends with our cats.
Oh, and it turns out she has allergies – just like Loki. Also, she’s been on four car rides so far. Each time, she got sick and threw up in the car.
Like I said, she really is the perfect dog for us.