Saturday, 3 May 2008

This Little Girl

This little girl kept my feet warm at night.

This little girl woke me in the morning with a sloppy wet kiss.

This little girl could melt even the most hardened heart.

This little girl was always happy - except on bonfire night when she was terrified.

This little girl loved chewing sticks - and my best shoes.

This little girl loved life and lived it to the full.

This little girl could be a proper little madam.

This little girl loved me unconditionally and I her.

This little girl went away much too soon.

This little girl will never grow old.

Canine Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia is a disease I knew nothing of, it's symptoms are initially mild - lethargy, lack of appetite, and can be progressive or appear suddenly. Other signs can be pale or jaundiced gums, ears and eyelids. In AIHA antibodies attach to the red blood cells and cause the body to believe the red blood cells are a "foreign invader". This causes the immune system to attack the red blood cells and destroy them. It is serious and it can kill. If detected early enough, it can be treated though the dog will most likely be on steroids for the rest of it's life. The cause of AIHA is not known with certainly, fortunately it is rare. Studies suggest that middle-aged female dogs and certain breeds are at a higher risk.

My little girl was 6, her symptoms were mild, we thought she had a bad tummy, like dogs do. When she didn't improve after a couple of days, we took her to the vet - we were told we had a very sick dog. The vet showed us her gums - they were yellow (why didn't I think to look inside her mouth). She was admitted immediately for treatment, she died that night.

You can read up more about this disease on the internet, one site is here, but there are many more. If you have a dog, especially a female, please read up and be aware of the symptoms to look out for. I don't want to worry you, it is uncommon, I just wish I'd known what to look out for.

My little girl was called Pickle - it suited her personality. She went away 2 ½ years ago, I think of her every day, it broke my heart.


  1. Oh, Lucy! I am so sorry you lost your friend. She looks like such a sweet little girl. I will read up on this disease. We've had a rough road with our male doxie for the past 5-6 weeks. He still needs prayer!! Hugs, terrie

  2. Im so sorry for the loss of your friend. I have dealt with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in my siamese that died, and had a diabetic cat that died, and a cat with kidney failure that lived for 6 more years with daily subq treatments. I also had a cat with a brain tumor that was removed along with his eye and had chemo. Its never easy....Im so sorry for your loss, please know that there are those of us out there that DO view our pets as our family.

  3. Pickle was a beautiful dog.
    Our dog died about eight years ago but I still miss her, I think you always do. Pets become part of the family.

  4. Lucy.. I am so sorry you lost your dog.. It is always heartbreaking to lose an animal.. they are cherished members of our family..

    Big hugs to you you.


  5. This post means so much to me as we lost our two year old Sunshine to the exact same thing. Just like you said we always thought she had a sensative stomach.

    I could go on an on about how I understand, but I think it will just make both of us sad. so just let me say I understand 100% and we'll leave it at that.


Thank you for your comments - I am not always able to reply but they are always appreciated.
Lucy x