Dezzie in kill shelter

Dezdemona, named after a character in Shakespeare's "Othello," joined us in 2012. She had been surrendered by her former owner's family at a local kill shelter. She was put on a 24-kill list as she was shaking so badly they didn't think she was adoptable. I guess they didn't have anyone on staff familiar with dachshunds. They are prone to getting cold due to thyroid issues. She had gone from a nice warm home to a cold shelter, from the love of her owner to a cement floor, and they were amazed she was shaking? Well, thank goodness for the folks at Helping Hands rescue that swooped in and scooped her up. We were called to be her foster family and picked her up shortly thereafter.

On the way home from the transfer "Trixie," her former name, curled up on my left leg and settled in. Within the next week she had her teeth cleaning. She also had developed a cough so was placed on meds to take care of any possible infection. The first adoption fair was cancelled as there was no one to work the event. About three weeks passed and our attempts to find a family to adopt Dezzie were successful. WE were her new family!

She was a neck dog. Her former owner allowed her to climb up on the sofa and lay on his neck (pretty warm place to reside). She had a good number of nicknames including, red dog, Deznut, Nezmut, Nanamanezmut, Dezaray, Dezarere, small dog, and little girl. She traveled with us and the rest of the pack to our NC home 5-6 times a year. She'd often be wearing a sweatshirt or hoodie to stay warm. It took her a good while to settle down during these trips. We still have the "nose art" tracks on the inside of the family truck side windows.

She was also known as the, "Yapanese" Dachshund, named for her sharp bark. One day, while hosting about 20 friends for a Boy Scout event planning meeting, one attendee asked if we were going to continue to let her bark. It had already been over an hour and Dez, put into her cage for her safety, had barked the entire time! We hadn't even noticed her barking? It was such a common occurrence that she would bark, or her case "yap," for literally hours on end. She was such a tiny thing, yet she had the temerity to "yap" for hours.

In 2018 Dezzie had her second Dental. She had doxie gunk mouth. All but two of her teeth were removed and she was started on a ground dog food slurry and Gabapentin (100mg daily). This didn't seem to slow her down any. Even with her tongue hanging out the left side of her mouth.

In 2020 during the middle of the pandemic Dez developed pancreatitis (and colitis most likely). We couldn't go into the vet's office with her, so we sat outside while the vet team worked on solution after solution. Summer of 2021, while up in NC, Dr. Julie suggested we move to the W/D food from Science Diet (both pâté and stew). Upon return to Florida, Dr. Kelly added white rice and a probiotic. That seemed to do wonders for over a year. A constant concern was Dez was not putting weight back on. Towards the end she was eating three meals a day yet kept declining in weight. A dog that was once about 10lbs was now 6.5lbs. We had an ultrasound done. Nothing abnormal was found. We had a number of blood tests done and nothing indicated organ failure. There was perhaps some protein in her blood (don't know where that was coming from) and it was low in iron.

Sunday evening, 19 September 2022, things started to head south pretty rapidly. Dez was not successful in trying to eliminate feces and was up every two hours in the evening. Later on Monday afternoon, there was a lot of mucus in her #2 and she was throwing up bile tinged pink. The morning of Sept 20 she began dripping blood from her rear. It was time. Best guess by the veterinarian was cancer was likely developing. A sensible path forward was not possible.

Dez had her last breath about 5:42p. It was a peaceful passing thanks to the great care of Dr. Berisha and the whole team at Micanopy Animal Hospital. They had gotten to know Dezzie well during the several years we struggled to provide a comfortable life for her. I don't think there was a dry eye in the office as we left without our little girl. Our pack was a small, medium and large dog. We're down to the medium and large pups, with an occasional visit from our extra-large grand puppy. We miss you Dezdamona.

[Click here for more photos of Dezzie]