Katcha Ště-Kot North
Today we said farewell to a great dog.The sadness we feel is not in her passing, but the realization that she has left us too soon.
At the end of the summer we noticed that she had a tumor, and that this tumor was rapidly growing, the prognosis was poor. We decided to let have have an early retirement and enjoy the beautiful Alberta fall weather. She wanted nothing of retirement and would head back to her sheep daily, often curled up close to the fence of the pasture wanting to to be let back in.We were doing her no favors by removing her from the dogs and sheep she loved.We relented, and she returned back to her job as matriarch of the pack and protector of the sheep.
We allowed her to carry on doing what she had always done and she was happiest curled up on a hay bale watching over everything.
The tumors expanded and spread across her body and we noticed a slowing down of her body but not of her mind. She still hazed a coyote a month ago and had a fence discussion with another, a few weeks back.When the weather turned colder we brought her into the warm shop at night and every morning she would trot back out to the pasture.About 10 days ago we realized that her body had started the shutting down process, she was full of tumors, she stopped eating, her energy was low, she did not venture back out to the sheep but hung around the barn.It was then that the sadness was the greatest, as we knew that everyday could be her last.
The appointment was made for the vet to come and euthanize her at home today.We were thankful that we could give her a quiet and easy death. Her passing was not sad, as we knew that she did not need to suffer to the very end.
She was surrounded by the people she loved, in her place and even with her favorite cat rubbing himself against her
We do not want condolences or even sadness, as she lived a grand life.
She had her pack, she had family, she had us and, she had her sheep.
She patrolled the vast pastures, she protected the sheep, she was brave and confident, and she lived a very natural life. She had her mate in Vuk, her daughter and other members of the pack around her. She had the freedom to move around on hundreds of acres, hunt squirrels in the bush and did not have to be obedient to any commands.
She was not molly coddled, controlled by leads and dog parks, and she certainly was not a "fur baby".
She ran with the dogs, she swam in the creek, she slept under the starts, howled with the wolves, she rolled in the snow, she chased ravens, threatened coyotes, she played under the northern lights, and she protected her sheep.
She traveled across the world and into our hearts,
and, we are happy and thankful for having her, be a part of our lives.
Our memories will be of fondness,
and not filled with the sadness of her passing.
She was loved and respected.
We will miss her but are content that she had a great, dog worthy, life.