Category Archives: Mr Spaghetti Legs

A Dog’s Last Will and Testament

 

Mr Spaghetti Legs

Mr Spaghetti Legs

A Dog’s Last Will and Testament 

– Author Unknown

Before humans die, they write their last Will and Testament, give their home and all they have, to those they leave behind. If, with my paws, I could do the same, this is what I’d ask . . .

To a poor and lonely stray I’d give:

– My happy home

– My bowl and cosy bed, soft pillows and all my toys

– The lap, which I loved so much

– The hand that stroked my fur and the sweet voice that spoke my name

 

I’d will to the sad, scared shelter dog, the place I had in my human’s loving heart, of which there seemed no bounds.

So, when I die, please do not say, “I will never have a pet again, for the loss and pain is more than I can stand.”

Instead, go find an unloved dog; one whose life held no joy or hope and give my place to him.

This is the only thing I can give . . .

The love I left behind.

 

Every rescue dog pines for their own loving home.

Mr Spaghetti Legs

Mr Spaghetti Legs

 

Thank You

LM and SL check out the Puzzle Tree

LM and SL check out the Puzzle Tree

I’d like to say a big Thank You to all of you who wrote such lovely messages of condolence on hearing of Mr Spaghetti Legs’ passing.

Earthstills wrote a beautiful special tribute post For Mr Spaghetti Legs.

I was very touched and comforted by these outpourings of love for an old dog.

You can read a little about Mr Spaghetti Legs’ origins here, Portrait of a dog #5 or any other stories about him by clicking on Mr Spaghetti Legs in the Wags (Tags) or Categories on my blog.

Apart from the sadness at the loss of a much loved friend, it was made harder by the fact that I had already booked Little Monkey in to the vets that day to have her teeth cleaned and a few lumps removed. So I took both dogs to the vets that morning and came home alone. The house was very, very empty; not even the solace of hugging LM as she was in hospital.

While LM was at the vets, we cleared up the heavy plastic sheeting that we had put down on the floors because of SL’s incontinence.

I went to fetch Little Monkey in the early evening, quite late because they had been very busy at the vets doing spays etc (they spay and neuter animals from rescue organisations) so LM was only operated on in the afternoon.

It was the most surreal experience to sit in the vets waiting room and have them bring out LM after her op. She was so calm to the point of being placid. She sat by me as the vet discussed the procedures and what meds I must give her and what to expect. I got a glimpse into what she might have been like with a different puppyhood, where her anxieties had been addressed and she had been encouraged to be calm and brave. So, yes, she was doped up on anaesthesia and morphine; but she was awesome!

Normally whenever I am at the vets, LM pants rapidly the whole time and her whole body trembles. She fixates on the exit and will not relax till she is outside and back in the car. It is exhausting for me to sit with her like this, as I absorb all her stressful energy.

When Little Monkey got home that evening, she walked all over the house and garden looking for her old friend, Mr Spaghetti Legs, and whimpering. It took her a long time to go to sleep that night.

I think that being drowsy from the anaesthetic, and the plastic sheeting not being there, made her more confused. The last time her old house mates died (Madam and TJ) four years ago, she didn’t react at all.

Also, it just goes to show how very much SL helped LM, gave her confidence and kept her calm.

They were a little pack, to which I had the privilege of belonging.

Mr Spaghetti Legs

Mr Spaghetti Legs

 

Mr Spaghetti Legs Runs with the Pack

Mr SL Says Hello

Mr SL

Goodbye my old boy.

Mr SL is all ears

Mr SL is all ears

May your aches disappear, your hearing be sharp again and your feet fly swiftly towards your waiting friends.

 

Lady

The First - Lady

The First – Lady

Jack

Jack

Jack

TJ

TJ - the Cape Lion

TJ

and Madam

Madam - the Border Collie cross - with her Spaniel impression

Madam

White Wolf 1

White Wolf 1

Mr SL

Mr SL

SL washed 1

SL washed 1

Mr SL and Bed 1

Mr SL and Bed 1

LM and SL play it Cool

LM and SL play it Cool

Mr SL catches a few winks

Mr SL catches a few winks

Peas in a Pod - SL and LM

Peas in a Pod – SL and LM

Mr SL

Mr SL

After - SL

Mr Spaghetti Legs

 

I’ll miss you.

 

Two’s Company!

LM and SL

LM and SL

Seems that no matter how many mats are available, these two dogs of mine want to be on the same one!

Little Monkey is the trouble maker, and with her speed and agility she can dash inside first. She then lies on the mat that she knows Mr Spaghetti Legs wants to lie on. Often she’ll lie there until the old boy has lain down somewhere else, then she’ll jump up and go lie on her preferred mat elsewhere.

This time, however, SL decided he’d give it a go. LM had lain very far back on the mat, leaving most of it exposed. The old boy slowly lay down right next to her, being very careful to not quite touch her. Normally LM would get up and go find another mat.

This time however, she stayed put.

You’ve no idea how unusual this is. You probably think because my dogs live together that they are the best of friends and play together, sleep together etc.

Not so. LM is a very anxious, unsocialised dog (before I got her). The fact that the old boy can lie right by her, is because he is special. In the not quite three years that we’ve had him, he has put up with all LM’s nonsense, with a quiet calm energy that reassures her again and again. It is this alone that lets her allow him to lie so close to her.

And yes, LM does have her ear resting on the settee!

 

Hibiscus

Hibiscus 1

Hibiscus 1

My hibiscus is in full orange bloom.

Hibiscus 2

Hibiscus 2

But my dogs, Little Monkey and Mr Spaghetti Legs (in the distance) are not the least bit interested.

Hibiscus 3

Hibiscus 3

“Put the camera down, Mum, and come Feed us!  We’re guarding the door because we know you’ll have to come in this way!”

The conversation then went something like this: –

LM&SL: We’re waiting for the biscuits!

Me: What biscuits?

LM&SL: You know, you said, “Hi, Biscuits.”

Me: No, no, I said, “Hibiscus!”

LM&SL: Oh. But we still get biscuits, right?

 

Sweet Dreams Are Made of This

Mr SL Snoozing

Mr SL Snoozing

Who am I to disagree?

Mr SL Snoozing 2

Mr SL Snoozing 2

I travel the world and the seven seas,

Everybody’s looking for something.

– Eurythmics

 

And all in  your dreams.

I like that my old boy Mr Spaghetti Legs is smiling in his sleep here.

 

post script: Lyrics by Eurythmics, and you can listen to the song here, Sweet Dreams Are Made of This.

 

 

Dead or Alive!

Dead or Alive 1

Dead or Alive 1

Both my ancient dog, Mr Spaghetti legs, and my ancient hydrangea, unnamed, might appear to be on their last legs, but they’re still here.

Dead or Alive 2

Dead or Alive 2

To paraphrase Mark Twain, “The report of their death has been greatly exaggerated.”

Dead or Alive 3

Dead or Alive 3

In the midst of death, life persists.Mahatma Gandhi.

 

What’s in a Name?

LM and SL play it Cool

LM and SL play it Cool

Some of you may have wondered, in idle moments, why Mr Spaghetti Legs has a title and Little Monkey does not.

Actually, when I first started this blog, LM was called The Idiot, so she shouldn’t complain! It took me a while to come up with the name you are all used to; Little Monkey.

As for Mr Spaghetti Legs, my daughter Pix just called him that one day, shortly after we had adopted him.

It fit perfectly. He is white, his legs are wobbly like spaghetti and he’s a guy! Furthermore, he actually is a gentleman.

When I put his food bowl down on the kitchen floor, he doesn’t dive straight in. He has a little trick he does, all by himself. He pauses for a moment and turns his head a bit to the side. He is asking, “Have you given me this food now? Is it mine, not yours? May I eat it?”

I do a large gesture with my whole arm, pointing down to his food bowl and then I walk away. It’s now his food; and he goes to eat it.

Little Monkey on the other hand, would dive straight in and not come up for air till her whole bowl was sparkly clean, if I did not insist Every Single Meal Time, that she sit: Food bowl on the floor in front of her: LOOK AT ME! Now Fetch!

Old SL uses his politeness trick at other times too. He pauses and waits for me to proceed him down the path, or through a door. He puts up with LM barging straight through him, leaping in the air and landing on him,  and generally behaving like a hooligan.

He is just courteous and polite and has earned his title of Mister.

Little Monkey? Well I suppose I could give her a title. … Madam!

 

Taking Care of the Elderly

Mr SL 1

Mr SL 1

Bette Davis said, “Old age ain’t no place for sissies!”

If there is someone elderly in your life, then you will know all the extra care that has to be taken. This is a light-hearted look at what this entails.

Mobility

When you get old, you can’t walk so well, or so fast! Be patient with your elderly. They’ll get there in the end. You could occupy your mind during the infinitely slow walk (I mean dodder!) by computing pi to 100 places; or my favourite, calculate how many seconds till you’ll be back home and can have that first vodka!

They will have difficulty rising or sitting down. Just give them time. If they need a little assistance, you can wrap them in a towel to help them up. (See Incontinence below.)

Negotiating steps becomes very tricky. You could help your elderly by installing a metal railing for them to grab onto. Alternatively, you can make garden steps easier to walk up and down by adding extra stone slabs,  so the gradient out onto the lawn is reduced by half.

Watch out though, because as the grass grows, you will forget about that last small paving slab, and repeatedly trip up on it yourself!

Repetition

Remember that it may be riveting to the elderly to repeat the same thing over and over. They may tell you the same story for the 83rd time! Just grin and bear it. On those days when you really cannot grin any longer, tell them politely that they have already told you this story, so they can move on to one you have only heard 65 times!

Conversely, things you have told them 100 times, they will insist you never told them at all. Just smile patiently and calmly repeat whatever it was, bearing in mind that this too will be instantly forgotten, in favour of the latest gossip (now 3 months old).

Alternatively, if they are sniffing every tree for five minutes at a time, tell yourself that it is like you watching a Keanu Reeves’ movie, and let them sniff to their heart’s content!

Sleeping

The elderly have a strange relationship with sleep. They will tell you exactly how many hours they slept each night; when they went to bed; when they got up for the loo; when they went back to sleep; when they finally woke up in the morning. They will insist they do not get enough sleep, apparently forgetting the two hours that they snooze every afternoon after lunch.

It is pointless remarking, that what does it matter how long they sleep, or not. It is obviously of vital importance to them.

And they will take any opportunity to sleep bathed in the warm rays of the sun.

Mr SL 2

Mr SL 2

Hearing

Many elderly become a trifle deaf. (This is exacerbated by the custard they have in one ear, and jelly in the other!) Seriously though, they will insist that there is nothing whatsoever wrong with their hearing and it is all your fault for mumbling, or speaking in Japanese, (unless you are Japanese, of course,  in which case you will be accused of speaking Norwegian!)

Be patient with the elderly deaf; speak slowly and clearly; actually I mean shout! You will then be rewarded with the comment that they can hear you for once. You then proceed to shout at everyone else for the rest of the day, until you finally realise you are doing so, when you lose your voice.

Clapping your hands loudly may elicit a response. Clapping your hands while moving sideways is even better. They seem to pick up on this movement quite well.

Appetite

The elderly may go off certain foods, or just generally be more picky about what they eat. Just offer them small portions of what they fancy.

Throughout it all, it is important that they continue any medication they might be taking. Sometimes this involves disguising the pill, by smothering it in peanut butter. If they get even more picky and eat all the peanut butter while still leaving the tablet, you can try crushing the tablet, or opening up the capsule and sprinkling the contents on the rest of the food.

If they then leave all their food, because of a little medicine on it, it is time to change the meds altogether. (Note, watch out that other elderly (LM) does not sneak in and wolf up the left over food; meds and all!)

Incontinence

Yes, I know, most people do not like to talk about this little problem, but believe me, the elderly will talk about it at length and ad nauseum, to the exclusion of all other topics!

The sad fact remains, that as you age, control over your bladder and bowel movements deteriorates. The elderly may find the occasional damp patch becomes a river (hence the avocation for the use of a towel when lifting, see above.) If disposable adult nappies are not available, newspaper and plastic sheeting can be used to great effect. The newspaper can be regularly thrown away and the plastic disinfected.

Solid matter is more easily dealt with. Every morning my first chore, before even my coffee, is to de-poop the kitchen floor. Sometimes during the day, I may find additional presents left for me in the sleeping area. With great skill, all newspaper and plastic sheeting will be bypassed, and a little sausage carefully deposited on each of three mats, necessitating the maximum amount of sterilising and washing. Bless.

Mr SL 3

Mr SL 3

I ask you, does this guy look more than 10?

He is at least 14, maybe 15 or more. Dogs hide their ailments so well and never, never, never, never complain! I wish people would take a leaf out of their book.

And I hope I look this good, when I’m 102!!

 

Mummy’s Little Helper Again!

Mr SL helps 1

Mr SL helps 1

No matter what the task, I always have my faithful companion right there next to me . . .  Helping!

Mr Spaghetti Legs checks out my weeding equipment. I kneel on the black plastic to save getting my clothes too dirty, and the old Pool Acid bucket is for the weeds.

Mr SL helps 2

Mr SL helps 2

Of course, all the old boy really wants, is to be Right Next to Me at all times!

It is hard to get a shot in focus!

However, things soon settled down and I carried on weeding, standing over by the wall. When I looked up I noticed SL.

He was comfortably settled, lying down on the lawn.

On my black plastic sheet!

 

post script: Check out these fun posts too: Mummy’s Little Helper, and Mummy’s Other Little Helper.