1992 – 10/05/2005
After 6 very rewarding years, Saturday brought the final moments for our handsome sweet boy, still standing, with dignity. His hips and hind legs wouldn’t hold him up very well at all anymore, and he collapsed often, was getting stuck in his doorless crate (he loved that crate-his own personal wolf den-nice!!) quite a bit, and even the 3 steps out on the deck were getting to be a real problem. It wasn’t just the arthritis, but also spondolosis, the same ailment (with a worsening heart condition) that felled our last Shepherd, Casey-1986-99. Xander was partly blind and deaf, but you would hardly have known it. Our friend Alison, a vet, also suspected he may have been suffering from a tumor on his spinal column, as he had an odd way of dragging his right rear paw suddenly, and then recovering, but we never officially had it diagnosed. But it was definitely getting worse. He was just wearing down and out; so tired, so painful to watch. But 13 years is often more than we expect with these big fur balls, and it’s a blessing that he had some quality of life until very recently.
Thanks always for introducing us to this very special guy. He wasn’t necessarily a dog for everyone, but he certainly was for us.