Nick was an incredibly brave greyhound and tried his best to be Nick to the end but a fall tore the skin over his hip. In an elderly dog, this injury is irreparable so it was time to let Nick go. This is a classic consequence of hip hyper–extension that tears the skin horizontally and can tear the joint capsule. So Nick left us at home on 03 December.
Nick was eating less than his maintenance
Nick was eating his full ration most days. He was a grazer and Missy was a Hoover-hound so I had to take up his leftovers and offer them later which was driving Missy wild.
I was feeding both dogs per the Canidae inactive adult guidelines. Missy is a bit smooth but Nick became increasingly gaunt. Eating most of his ration, Nick was not maintaining weight so I began to look for add-ins that he would eat. I took to feeding him 1/2 cup 3 times a day adding 50 grams of roast beef to one meal and a half-can of canned tuna to a second.
Nick was cleaning his bowl but still loosing weight. I was never successful at stopping this wasting. I’m firmly convinced that his metabolism changed as he aged.
No, they won’t let you know!
Greyhounds will keep on keeping on into overtime. Both Lance and Nick did so. They loose their super powers little by little and also their ability to do activities of daily living little by little. And the progression is one of hills and valleys rather than a steady descent. It was helpful to identify a terminal quality of life but Nick did not approach it linearly. Rather, he’d have good days and bad and good hours and bad. He could appear to be down only to nap for a couple of hours and hop up to follow me around as best he could. It is a myth that they will let you know when it is time.
Some fond memories
I miss my Snarky Puppy. Such a calm dog in kennel, Nick came home an absolute git. He thought the world centered around him and when he discovered that it didn’t, he’d get frustrated and go hose down something he associated with me. Taken to a reunion, he spent the whole time marking and barking at the other greyhounds in attendance. Nick would walk the neighborhood here at Dismal Manor, head in the trees shouting at the squirrels as they laughed at him.
As he completed year 4, Nick managed to shed his sapling ways and become an adult. Just in time for the car trip to Dismal Manor and the motel stay while we awaited our household goods. The marking stopped and a fenced yard let him dissipate some of the energy. Through year 5 and 6 Nick continued to torment squirrels, at first charging them but later stalking to close before the charge. I have a video of him stalking somewhere in the Wayback Machine.
When Missy joined us, Nick gave her one menacing only to be told to play nice. He quickly discovered she was a track fit, track fast 3 while he was nine. Nick would withdraw to the carport when Missy went ripping about the yard. After that one testing of limits, each would take the other’s wing as needed. Sadly, they never played together. But when one called Tally Ho, the other would come running to support. For late night turnout, they’d go together. The first would wait for the second to join.
Missy is doing well but she misses Nick’s company and support. She’s needing more play time and more cuddle time (an OK thing). She’s also driving the plan of the day. She raises sand when it is meal time and treat time. I’ve introduced some indoor ball play with the big fuzzy Chuck-It and give her evening treats in a treat puzzle toy.
Maybe. I’m 71 so my next would be with me into my early 80’s if I adopted a track hound. I also have the option of adopting a displaced hound. Our local rescue is winding down so James River Greyhounds is serving the 757. James River are better prepared to take a group of dogs from the track, house them, and distribute them. They affiliate with Greyt Love Retirement who operates a small kennel, has a hauler, and brings dogs to the area for adoption. James River sorts and places the greyhounds.