Calliope, March 2012 – February 2013

We should have had 14 years together.

Today Calliope passed away of kidney and liver failure.

She was 11 months old.

I spent about a year alone. I knew I needed a dog but I was afraid of the commitment, newly living alone for the first time in a decade. I spent the strangest 6 to 8 months of my life, separated from our three dogs Molly, Lucy and Carter during my divorce, and I couldn't be sure I had the time to raise a puppy right. Over time, my ex and I worked out a marvelous system around the dogs and I saw plenty of my best friends. Still, a puppy was missing for me. Molly and Lucy, cavaliers and the loves of my life, were nearing 11 and I wanted to give them a chance to train a new friend and the new dog to carry on their legacy. Finally! Things lined up and I knew I'd have the time to be there for the new puppy. I immediately started my search.

I was careful in selecting a breeder. I met quite a few dogs. I was looking for someone special to join me. Calliope and I fell in love at first sight. She was TINY but bold. An old soul that lived for fun and frolic. Truly a rare combination in either of our species. I couldn't wait to bring her home.

In June, I picked her up with Lucy. After a few weeks we traded and she met Molly. My plan worked perfectly. Calliope was amazing. Housebroken in an instant. Cuddly, playful, sparkling! My home and my life were filled with her energy! Callie didn't seem to be growing, however, and I thought, "How lucky, I'll have a puppy for 15 years!" Sadly, in October, her eating tapered off and she started to fade. "Failure to thrive" is how the research spoke of it.

Testing showed two forms of kidney failure. Her liver function was also off. I was crushed. My new darling girl was passing away. I cried at stop lights. I cried always. Then I watched her and realized Callie had no idea how long she was to live. She was happy and she was dancing around the house just like she did before she was diagnosed. She was eating her modified diet and maybe we'd have years. I needed to take her out and show her the world. So I did. Calliope broke hearts all over the bay area.

Sadly, we did not have years. She faded fast and her energy disappeared. She was no longer full of life and on our vets recommendation it was time to say goodbye. Carolyn and I held her until she was gone.

Variation from the norm is where all the fun is. Callie didn't live long but she burned bright, had a blast and made a very large difference in my life. I am a changed and better person for the 8 months we had. She taught me something about living in the moment, not worrying about tomorrow and that tiny puppies can have huge hearts.

Thank you Carolyn, you were a wonderful mom and she loved you. Thank you to the crew at Alto Tiburon Veterinary Hospital for all you've done for so many of my friends, for so many years. You guys were crying with us and I appreciate that. Most of all, thank you Calliope.

Here's an iphone video of her favorite game. It's how I'll remember her.