Elke Our 'Baby Girl'
(New Palestine, In)
Our hearts are broken and the house is empty and too quiet. Our sweet 'baby girl' Elke is gone. Taken from us too, too soon and so unexpectedly. One afternoon she's playing tug-o'war, chasing her squirrels and birds; that evening vomiting several times and a very hard panting that never stopped. A trip to the vet the next day showed an enlarged heart. Medicine the vet said should help her could not stop the agony she went though.
I will never forget her beautiful brown eyes that seemed to be pleading to me for help...and I couldn't help her. She crossed the Rainbow Bridge 2 1/2 days after this all started. Everyone tells us time will make it easier. I pray that is true because right now I have this swelling in my heart that feels as though it could burst, just like Elke's did. The tears seem to come out of no where.
My husband too is hurting so much because she is not there to go about with him on their daily routines. She helped collect the paper, went out to get the mail and made sure the mowing was done properly. Oh, and ran after the inevitable sticks and balls he would throw.
Elke was our joy on the day. She would wake with us in the mornings with her short little tail wagging and her special 'schnauzer talk.' If it got past her bedtime, she would stand, stare and moan until you realized she wanted to go back to our bed. If we did have to leave her, which was not often or for very long, she would be right there at the door to greet us. And we could count on her giving us a robust 'talking to.' If your a schnauzer owner, you know the wonderful 'schnauzer talk.' When she 'talked' I know she was telling us something that was important to her. On the flip side, when I would talk to her she would look at me so intently, with her deep brown eyes, that I know she understood a lot of what I was saying.
Elke was a stout little girl measuring about 17in. and weighting about 30lbs; but that was just perfect for us. She was just the right size to roll around on the floor and play with her 'Daddy.' It didn't take long for her to conquer our hearts. Whether sitting at table reading the paper or one of us on the computer, she was right there in our lap... helping out.
Elke was my constant companion when I retired on disability due to COPD. It was such a comfort to have her beside me. Elke was an amazing girl. I don't know if she fell into our routine or she had us adapt to hers. When we traveled and was loading the van, she would be in the van right behind the drivers seat before the bags had been loaded. As if to say, "Hey, I'm ready....hurry up. Lets go." Her groomer told me more than once there was a little old woman in Elke; because she was too wise to be just a dog.
I don't know how this enlarged heart was able to sneak up on us the way it did. Elke had always been well cared for and checked every year by our vet. So my advise to everyone is... an x-ray of your beloved schnauzer around the age of 6 or 8 might be a good idea. There is medicine for it if caught in time.