"MAXDOG" is now available on Amazon.com!!
Click HERE for the 'Print-on-Demand' version
Click HERE for the Kindle (USA) version
Click HERE for the Kindle (UK) version
Caryl Moll's author page on Amazon, click HERE

Dear Readers and faithful friends,

After a number of years of wonderful blogging, this blog has effectively become dormant - except for occasional updates regarding my book, MAXDOG. I have left this blog as a legacy to my dog and a place of sanctuary where we can reflect upon his life. Take your time, peruse the pages spanning Max's 18 months in cyberspace. Feel refreshed and uplifted because his story is an amazing one of..."LIVING LIFE TO THE MAX!"
My activities have now moved on to my new blog entitled "LIVING LIFE TO THE MAX". Please join me there where you can read about my family and canine companions. I also invite you to visit MAXDOG's FANPAGE on FACEBOOK. You can follow the specific links by clicking below:

* MAXDOG, the book: click HERE

If you would like to follow me on a deeper, spiritual level, then I invite you to visit my more personal blog:

May God bless you and thank you for following me!


Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Greetings from South Africa!!!

MAXMOM here...

Hello there to all our friends across the globe!

Life here in Johannesburg city continues at its usual pace. Our weekends are busily filled with family and girls home from university, whilst the weekdays fall into their own routine. Maxdog chugs along too. This is his

38th Day of Grace!

We truly are graciously blessed in these golden days:
 He's painfree, comfortable and still enjoying his walks.
On the sad side, I can see his deterioration now: His face is a little more gaunt, he sleeps excessively, I can feel the hard mass in his abdomen now and meal times are becoming times of impossible coersion. The only thing he really seems to enjoy are 'doggie biscuits', so I'm feeding him handfuls. Generally he prefers the 'not so nutritious' ones now, but hey - I think he has earned the right to choose!

In the evenings, he perks up for his walk. It's not a long walk - merely down the street and focussed more on reading the news and eating grass. Tammy is a great energiser in convincing Max to run when the opportunity presents itself.

The seasons are definitely changing!
On our walk, we see a number of rose bushes which are showing off their last blooms. Somehow those last blooms of the season are always the most beautiful...

...and many of the trees have already made their seed pods...

When the prospect of winter descends on me with its familiar heaviness, I always try to remember that the seeds and dormant trees are merely retreating into a 'resting' time - all in preparation for the abundance of Spring.
I try to remember that there is creativity in everything around us!

For example: These black seed pods (above) can be transformed into this...

Whilst the season transforms our ageing dogs also seem to slink into a shape of dormancy.
They practice their sleeping habits in perpetuity!


uses this opportunity to assert his jurisdiction. He reckons that while Miss "R" is away at university, it is his role to "guard" her bed!...

So the forthcoming  season  represents change for us all.

In the past couple of weeks, I have been working on the suggestion of Riley's mom (in New Zealand), who suggested that I 'hand write' my special memories of MAXDOG...

Well, this personal book is almost full now and contains pages and pages of memories. It also includes the stories of his early life (which aren't contained in this blog at the moment). I know it is going to become a treasure to me in the times to come...

So, in this household, I am living from day to day with my special


At times its really difficult to watch the course of this disease as it saps his vitality.
I wish I knew the exact diagnosis, but unfortunately that can only happen with a biopsy of his liver and an autopsy after he's gone. So I have to bury my own need to know and to simply go with the flow.
Its at times like this when I understand that the true spirit of all creatures shines brightly just before they depart...you see them for their real selves!
What I am absolutely certain about is that our


is an incredible fighter!!!

I need to resolve to live in the moment...
To enjoy what I have...

Yesterday was history...
Tomorrow is a mystery...
Today is a gift...

(That's why they call it a 'present'!)

Have an awesome day!
Please remember that we love you all !!!
(Even if we aren't getting to your blogs!).
Take care and lotsaluv



Gail said...

That was a very moving update on Max. And what a beautiful rose. So glad that Max still makes it out for a short walk. It must help him so much having the other dogs around.
I can imagine your personal book about Max will be overflowing. I have written daily in a personal journal for the past 16 years, and although this was never particularly intended to be a record about Hamish's life, I do now realise that I have a wonderful archive, and reading back through the volumes reminds me of much that I had forgotten about the wee chap (for example, how disconcerting I found it when I brought him home and he followed me around the house, absolutely everywhere, for the first couple of weeks!) Some of the stories will no doubt make it into the new blog.
Congratulations on the BBC Blogworld clip, by the way, showing the positive side of blogging!

Tom, Tama-Chan, Sei-Chan, Yuu-Chan said...

That book looks wonderful. We're so glad you went ahead with it.

We feel for you in watching MaxDog slowly fading, but we must all remember that he is lucky in on respect: he is surrounded by so much love.

Woofs, Purrs and Hugs
The Poupounette Gang

Little Island In The Med said...

MaxMom, your MaxDog book looks fantastic, i hope you share soem of his earlier days with us eventually.

I enjoyed the clip on the BBC website, nice to hear your beautiful accent! ;-)

The Bumpass Hounds said...

Hey Ms. Caryl (and pack),
We breathe a sigh of relief today knowing Max is still sharing his daily routine with you. Your journal's memories will be a source of comfort when it's time for Max to leave you and us. We know how rapidly the time for decision can come from when our brother Chance was sick. Like Max, he enjoyed an extended period of Grace with only one bad day throughout his illness until he told mom and dad it was his time go go. That's perhaps why we live here in apprehension. We continue to pray for Max's welfare and hold you all in our thoughts and hearts. Your resolve strengthens us; we love you Max Dog.

kks said...

i love your spirit and Maxdog's too! he is a fighter, and to watch him deteriorate is hard, but a necessary part of life....he is the most loved dog in the universe!!
loved the BBC snippet!
love you Maxdog!

Pibble said...

Every day is a present and you and Max are an inspiration for sharing each day with us.

I think kks is right: Max IS the most loved dog in the universe (no offense to my other bloggie friends!)!

Sending warm woofs and waggles,


Cocorue said...

everyday is truly a gift and we thank you gifting us this 'Present.'

although we are watching from afar, please know that we Are with you in spirit, dear Caryl

Coco, Tiffy & mumster

Mango said...

That last poem was very wise. That is how we try to live here whenever possible. Max is tired, but still has his happy times.


The Thundering Herd said...

Max - Eat whatever you want, buddy. We remember that Nikita decided that there were certain human foods was all she wanted - and the humans fixed it for her. What a score!

An always wise poem at the end.

The OP Pack said...

Thanks for the pupdate - we are sad to hear that Max is slowing down but we have to admire and love his spirit. You are so right, he has earned the privilege of eating whatever he wants at this point - give that boy all the treats he wants. Your handwritten memoir will be a treasure for you in the years to come. Hugs to all of you.

Woos - Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

Ginger Jasper said...

The book looks wonderful and I bet it will be a great source of comfort to you in the future. It is a wonderful idea. I am so sad to read that Max is slowing down but had to smile though the sorrow to read Max likes and gets the treats not normaly so free flowing.. Eat all you can Max and enjoy.. The pictures are as always beautiful and the post very moving.. Hugs GJ xxx

SGR said...

Woof! Woof! MAX. Many people are so concerned with adding days to their life that they forget to add life to their days. YES indeed ... Living in the moment is so important. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

~Kim~ said...

Each of us who have had dogs to love like Maxdog, and our Cowboy that we lost on Saturday have all been given something extraordinary to love, and be loved so unconditionally in return. What a gift to be able to have each day of Grace with them!!

The Rocky Creek Scotties said...

I'm so glad you're seeing each day as a gift - it truly is.

I must sit down and write Java's memoirs. It will be comforting for now and for the future.

Hug your special boy for me.

Lynn - The Rocky Creek Mom

Madi and Mom said...

Dear Max's Mom...what a lovely post...but then Max is your inspiration so it would have to be lovely. You are living proof that love conquers all. Happy 38th day of Grace Max
Madi and Mom

houndstooth said...

Ah, the last blooms of the season are often the most beautiful! Max continues to be an inspiration for us and we still wish you and him all the best!

Jake of Florida said...

Your post had so many touching thoughts in it. We found the changing of the seasons somehow echos Maxdog's period of grace. We loved the sight of your handwritten Max book -- what a treasure. We are so computer-driven, that anything handwritten immediately takes on an extra patina. But most of all, we are touched by your sensitivity to the tiny things that make life so special -- but that sometimes we don't always see. Yes, it's a present!

Wirey love,

Joan and the Barkalots

mayziegal said...

Maxdog and Maxmom - me and my mom think of you every single day. We have learned so much from your example just in the short time we have been visiting your blog. And I'm with you - today is the best "present" there is and every day I think, wow! Would you look at that? Another day! Amazing!

Wiggles & Wags,

JC said...

Thank You for taking the time to update us on Max. I am so sorry that they could not do something to help him. My own dog, Bella, has had two surgeries. Her third will be scheduled for this Summer. As she sleeps, I also look at her, and hope for more time.

I'm thinking of you and hoping he continues to go for walks with you ... if I could I'd give you a huge hug ... from one dog owner to another.

ABBY said...

I began my blog for Abby as a way to document her life (and the lives of her brothers and sisters) and as a testimony to the many memories that would be so easily forgotten in day to day living. YOU have done that with your blog to for Max (and your book is a treasure trove)...I look every morning I wake up to see your latest update on Max. I may not always comment, but I read and visit. I am so glad for God's grace for Max and you. Thank you for sharing.
~Abby's Mom Debra

KB said...

Both you and MaxDog are an inspiration. I'm glad that he's chugging along but so sad that the inevitable slide has to occur. We went through something similar almost a year ago and I remember the feelings like I felt them yesterday.

Your poem is so full of wisdom and a good reminder to us all.

I hope that you, Maxdog, and the rest of the pack have a good day together today with walks in the green grass and lots of treats.

MySpecialDoggies said...

I have kept a journal since my heart and soul doggie Keelee was diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2008 and losing her in May of that year. My rescue doggie Apples is dying of mammary tumors, and I write so that I will retain memories of our days together.

You will find some comfort as you re-read your entries in the future...

Hugs from Philadelphia,
Nadine, Apples & golden Neeli

Samantha said...

Your hand-written Max journal is a beautiful idea - especially since your handwriting is so beautiful. As is your update today. The rose photo is stunning - as are the trees' seed pods - wow - never saw anything like those trees! Oh Max - keep eating all those biscuits - 's many as you can dear pup. We love you so much and think of you lots each day.
We send you hugest hugs and pats to you from us xoxoxoxoxoxoxox
Sammie, Miche and Bill

Andrea said...

Hugs and prayers,
andrea and the perdue zoo

Amy and The House of Cats said...

I think it is so wonderful that you are able to live in the moment to experience every wonderful minute Max has.

Ina in Alaska said...

To every thing, there is a season. So hard to let go but you are facing the upcoming inevitable with a brave heart. We are here for you all. I am sure Max is enjoying his unhealthy biscuits with vigor and his short walks. Keep up your spirits. . The picture of Max with his giraffe is priceless. Sending love every day.. xoxo PS Looks like Lance Mackey is going to have his 4th Iditarod win today!!

Khyra The Siberian Husky And Sometimes Her Mom said...

As always, a post filled with some much sense -

And fur Max, so many scents!

Please know all of woo khontinue to be in our thoughts -

Khyra & Khousin Merdie

Mrs. JP said...

I'm so glad that you did the book. Though, heart rendering (at the least)now, it will be a treasure later.
Hey, I say, out with the good stuff for MAX. I bet cheese cubes would taste good - whatever he likes he should get. Have you ever made peanut butter cookies for dogs? They can have everything in your basic recipe - and no pressure on them being the perfect texture bake them until you smell them is what I do.
We love you all and thank God for His continued grace to us all. God bless you all.

KT and Lady said...

Hey Max, yer Mom is so wise to hand feed you what you want. And the handwritten journal is priceless. Being a guy, keeping a diary/journal was the furthest thing from my mind most of my life. Like others here in dog-blog land, an after the fact journal about my memories of Devo is what got me started blogging.
I know you are tired Max - your brave heart and unconditional love for your pack keeps you going; and that's the best thing. Eat your chow (try some tasty canned tripe dog food - fed to you via a spoon). That's the only thing Devo would eat during his borrowed time.
We love you and think about you every day Max.

KT and Lady

dewdana said...

Yea for walkies and cookies. Every day that he can still enjoy those is truly a gift. Give him hugs from Moose + Me! I have never heard that little saying at the end that is nicely put!

Jacqueline said...

Caryl, always a moving, loving post filled with optimistic reality, which I believe is the best way to view life...I know how devastating it is to watch the deterioration of someone you love and I am so sorry you are experiencing such sorrow with Max now; every moment is bittersweet and embraced...Wishing you all comfort, peace and love at this difficult time.

the booker man said...

the max book was a wonderful idea...a bunch of wonderful memories you will always be able to remember.
we're glad max continues to enjoy his walkies and keep giving him lots of yummy cookies
lots of hugs to max from all of us.
the booker man, asa, and their mama

Scout and Freyja said...

What a lovely accounting you are creating in your remembrance of Max's life. Pouring yourself into that task you are also sharing a part of yourself - what a special gift for all you love and who love you.

Needless to say, my ♥ is with you and Max every moment I am awake. I know all too well the pain of losing someone you love piece by piece. You are grateful for the time but your heart experiences a million tears over that time.

Hugs to all of you, especially my darling Maxdog.

Stella, Gunther and Betty said...

Max is so incredibly blessed to have a mom like you. I think that's where he gets his strength to continue on each day.

Shannon and the Gang

TwoSpecialWires said...

Seeing the lovely photographs of your changing seasons, and seeing and reading about Max's brave journey and your relationship together, helped Moma to reflect on others ... families with and without dogs ... who take a similar path every day. Your celebration of the present is much appreciated, and we rejoice in each day that we all are given with each other.

Jake and Fergi and Sally

caboval said...

What a lovely post! Everyday is a gift and even more precious with Max in it! I love your journal with Maxdog. I will be hugging Joey and Kealani extra today and thinking of Max who has become so special somehow to me. I look for this blog first thing everyday to check in with how Max is doing. Hang in there! Love, Valerie Joey and Kealani

TK said...

As always, your post is lovely. The rose and Max are beautiful.
Enjoy your present, and thank you for reminding us of ours.
TK's mom

Junior and Orion said...

Oh Maxdog....we continue purring for you. Eat all those treats you can!!!

kissa-bull said...

we are furry happy you get to eat the naughty nom noms too much
you so deserve to eat whatever you like
i bet the roses have lots of exciting upcoming spring news dont they??
we send you slobbery pibble sugars
and our candle continues to shine for you
the houston pittie pack

Chester said...

I'm sure it is extremely difficult some days to find that silver lining in the dark cloud when you see Max starting to fade. The journal is priceless, I just hope it is on waterproof paper because there will be both happy and sad tears shed over it someday.

You are a very special family and Chester and I are both honored to know you. God bless you as you continue to enjoy Max's life with you on earth.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-11
Chester's Mom ;0=)

Priscilla said...

That was a beautiful post on Max. I'm sure we'll all remember him forever, and so will you, the book is going to be the most precious thing ever. I think it's a great idea, writing down all your memories together.

Dear Max, have a great life. Eat well, sleep well, be happy. Live long and healthy.

Kira The BeaWootiful said...

Wooos Max Dog! Mum thinks your poem is one of the best! She loves the fall season best of all, the colors and the life that is swirling around her! Enjoy everyday!
~puppy kisses~
-Kira The BeaWootiful

The Life of Riley said...

It's morning in New Zealand so we are just reading your blog now.

It is so lovely to see your journal. Your handwritten book about Max looks like a wonderful keepsake of your time together (especially his pre-blog years) and I know that you will treasure these memories in the years to come, and also use this journal in the coming months to capture your more thoughts and memories of Max as they come to mind.

As always, we are thinking of you both,
Love Riley and Fran

Anna the GSD said...

Max, I haven't been around in a while but I still crossed my paws and prayed for you! Glad you're still painfree and having good times and memories with your family. You are awesome! Giant hugs and kisses!


Tessa the Maltese said...

Caryl you are as Blessed as Max.

Thoughts and Prayers are with you, Hugs, Tessa

Stella said...

Happy 38th day, Maxdog! I am happy for your daily stroll and your cookies. I saw the film and loved seeing your Mom in person, and also you and the rest of the gang. They would not let me register to make a comment, and its been a busy day. May try later.

My heart is with you all of the time, Max, and I hope whatever is ahead is easy for you to do. But until that time, counting Days of Grace is more than nice!

Jo and Stella

Benny and Lily said...

we love the post
Benny & Lily

NCmountainwoman said...

There are so many of us who are sharing your joyful and extremely painful journey. Hardly a day goes by that I don't look at my two goldens and am so thankful we are not facing such challenges as you and MaxDog. I know we will inevitably face them (as we have twice before) and I pray that we can do so as graciously as you and MaxDog.

Audrey the Photographer Dog said...

What a beautiful post. Fight on my friend. You are handsome as ever. Rest well and enjoy your present and all of this love!

Lorenza said...

Yes. Every day is a gift! And I know you are enjoying your everyday gifts!
Take care
Kisses and hugs

Tweedles -- that's me said...

One day I sat and watched the leaves change colors.
And then I watched them fall to the ground one by one.
I did not want to watch, but somehow I knew that I must be with the trees who have talked to me everyday. I knew they must go to sleep. My eyes cried.
But I did not love those trees like you loved Max.
It is sad to see the season change sometimes. I just don't understand why our hearts must hurt so bad.
I am holding Max's hand, and yours.

Jan's Funny Farm said...

Max is still so handsome. And to see the photos one wouldn't think he has any health problem.

Ms. ~K said...

Max is an incredible fighter and you are an incredible lady!
You and Max have touched so many lives!

PS...any idea how long it takes a postcard to arrive in SA from AK?
Lance won is 4th Iditarod today!

Siku Marie, White Dog said...

Your journey has been an inspiration to follow; we are honored that you took a moment to visit our little corner of the blog world. Thank you for stopping by my blog to wish mom a happy day. You made mom smile and helped a puppy in need! You all have such compassionate and kind hearts!

Twinkietinydog said...

Another gifted day is about to go by, just to make room for the next one. Great Max update again.

Scout 'n Freyja said...

I forgot to mention the last time I was here that the little bird is ADORABLE! We sure don't have trees around here that produce anything like that!

Nika + PARKER said...

We have been away on vacation, so sorry for the delay. It takes a while to catch up on all our friends. Every day is a gift to us all, please enjoy Maxdog to the fullest, he is one lucky guy.

Hugs from Parker + Nika