"MAXDOG" is now available on Amazon.com!!
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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!


Sunday, May 23, 2010


MAXMOM here...
As the sun sets this evening I realise that another 24 hours have gone past.
What’s in a day?
Each day is a new beginning. Each day presents the opportunity of living. Perhaps the difficulties are there so that I am able to appreciate all the beauty, all the love and all the immense bounty of this life. What would life be without hardship? It simply wouldn’t be life!
Thank you so much to you all for your messages of support, strength, caring, compassion and upliftment. Both the “Boss” and I read your words and we are each able to glean immense strength and guidance from your heartfelt comments. It’s ironic that there is always at least one message that will touch us to the core – the place where we most need it. Thank you, dear friends!
Miss R has gone back to university and the house is still again.
(Some photos during her departure...)
Maxdog has had a comfortable day.
Our collective decision, for the moment, is to let him be and watch him carefully. He looks pretty peaceful and comfortable despite his general reluctance of food.
At lunch time he did take a few Vienna sausages from me, only to bring them up a little later. The diarrhea however seems to have eased. This is no surprise because there hasn’t been much in his stomach. This evening however, (very surprisingly) he has eaten a bowl of chicken mince. We are holding thumbs that this will stay down.
Where he’s getting his strength from generally, I have no idea! When he’s not been taken out of the property for one of his rejuvenating short walks, he is lying somewhere close beside me. He loves being outside our perimeter and still scouts for smells and news. When he’s inside our boundaries however, he sleeps silently, deeply and peacefully. Only the tell tale rise and fall of the fur on his side suggests that he’s still alive. His breathing is unlaboured, very shallow but very comfortable and he doesn’t seem to be in any pain whatsoever!

He does have regular moments of liveliness during the day where he’s taken to carrying that horrible raw-hide bone around.
On a lighthearted note:...
was contemplating his own gorgeousness this morning. I think it was during this time that he disbanded his reverie and decided to dig up Maxdog's raw-hide bone...
He dug it up this morning where Max had buried it on Friday.
Well it wasn’t in the possession of ‘THE KING’ for long!
immediately emerged from his dreams and retrieved it and he has carried it with him all day.
He doesn’t chew it but just carries it around
I don’t have much more to tell you. These next few days are going to be tough.
Sending lotsaluv to all of you...my amazing, special and wonderful cyber friends!



~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

I'm glad that today is a good day, especially because it's your birthday! I know that the coming days will require much inner strength and courage, but I know that you will find it, because you've already shown that it's there.

houndstooth said...

Happy Birthday! I'm glad you were able to celebrate it with Maxdog! I am so happy for you that you were able to celebrate that joy together. I lost two very dear souls to me both just a bit before my birthday, and I had been praying hard that they'd both still be around on that day. I know the coming days are hard, but I'm glad that today didn't have to be the toughest one. Hugs to you and Maxdog, and the rest of your family, too!

King Toffee, apparently the treasure is off limits!

Bunny and Carrie

Heather and Kelly said...

Happy Birthday Caryl!!
It looks like it has been a pretty good day, so glad to see an update.

Silly Max, Ellie says that looks like a BEAUTIFUL rawhide. She says it is in it's prime, especially with all that dirt on it. A work of art.

Tama-Chan, Bibi-Chan, Gen-Chan, Vidock, Violette, Ollie said...

Thank you for that lovely post, and Happy Birthday, MaxMom!

We are with you in your decision to just "be." Sometimes, that really is what it's all about.

Ms. ~K said...

Happy Birthday and thank you for taking the time on your special day to keep us posted on Max. The photos of you two are overwhelmingly touching.
I'm sure R's departure was very emotional.
You are all in thoughts.
Max, I love you.

NAK and The Residents of The Khottage said...

Happy Birthday MaxMom!

Once again, we must paw that #1's words are 'it'

Khyra & Khousin Merdie

Stella said...

Happy Birthday, Caryl! Happy 106th day of Grace to Mr. Max.

My 16 year old Scottie Otis had so many problems of old age, every night I would tell him if he wanted to go be Jesus's Dog, it was OK with me. But he kept falling off the porch and wouldn't allow me to help him, so the vet helped him on his way. I just felt I had no choice. But Max, he is getting ready in his own sweet way. I love his nasty bone, and I am sure he will bury it again soon.

Cheers, Max, our prayers and thoughts are with you, every day.

Stella and Jo

Golden Woofs! SUGAR said...

Woof! Woof! Happy Happy 106th Gifted Day! continuing to send my Golden Healing Thoughts to you. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

JacksDad said...

I love the fact that Max is carrying his bone around with him. There is an amazing spirit in that boy!!

Cat Mandu said...

Lots of hugs for handsome Max! I'm glad he takes comfort in his rawhide bone. He's a sweetie.

Jacqueline said...

Happy Birthday Caryl...Birthday wishes of great health and much happiness to you...Blessings of comfort and love to you all.

JC said...

If he doesn't seem to be in pain, I would let him be. Maybe he will just fall to sleep on his own. One could wish ...

I don't know your plans for him, but if he could be buried with his bone ... I think he would like that.

Thinking of you ...

Give him a pet from me.

Angus said...

To have celebrated your birthday with Max was something very special - for both you and him. Families are defined by events.Today your blog spoke to us as if it were our own of two weeks ago.

♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥ said...

We cam by to wish you a happy birthday. We know it must be bittersweet but we hope you can have some moments of happiness and joy today.

Hugs to Max, we think he is telling you he wants to take his chewie with him when he goes on his next journey.

Woos - Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

sprinkles said...

Happy Birthday, Caryl!

I love that Max carries around that dirty rawhide bone. It seems to give him a comfort of some kind. As JC said, it would be a nice gesture to bury it with him when the time comes.

I love that picture of King Toffee looking at himself in the mirror. I had a cat who loved to look at his own reflection. I'm convinced he knew just how beautiful he was and that's why he enjoyed looking at his refelction so much!

Thinking of you often and keeping you all in my prayers.

Nellie, Yuchie, Calvert and Bailey said...

Happy birthday Max-Mom!

So very happy that you're able to share it with Max. He's looking good and is obviously pretty much aware of all that is going on if he's so protective of his rawhide; thought it was a mouse there for a brief second. hehehe

We agree that each day is a blessing. We never know what is around the corner and should treat every second of our day with our beloved humans and animals as a gift.

Sending healing thoughts to Max and our strength to you and your family. As long as he's not in any pain just watching over him and taking care of him is the best you can do. He's a very lucky boy to have such a wonderful family.

You are in our prayers

mom to Nellie & Calvert

Sunny,Scooter, (sometimes Jamie) said...

Firstly, Happy Birthday Caryl. I wish it had been under happier circumstances.
These days of grace are so very hard for you and the Boss. To watch a loved one ,I will use the word, change, slowly, makes crying an everyday occurrance. Wishing it were not so. Thinking back on a vital, energetic Max. Holding the wake before he is gone. Again, I wish he will give you the gift of slipping away peacefully. No decision, just his soul leaving his useless vehicle behind, as we all will sooner or later. We pray for Miracles. What is a miracle? Max still here is one. In my case, when my mother died, instead of having to make 1 of 3 decisions I was being pushed to make, the miracle was within 10 minutes of my leaving the room (before I decked someone) she simply left and went on to Heaven. I wish that for y'all.
We pray for miracles. In my case, it was not the miracle I wanted, but it was the one I got. No decision on my part.
It is hard to watch, it is hard to make a decision to stop watching.
I shed tears for you and the Boss. I will say to you what I said to Digby's folks. I do not know how you are posting. I do not have the guts. I have had to make the decision 1 time since I began blogging. For Shamus. I did not share at all and gave few details. Guess I am just a chicken. But I applaud your courage.
Dogs teach us lessons. Very hard ones. You are sharing Max's lessons. (They teach us also while vibrant and young and well too. I do not mean to say this is the only period of max's lessons.) But I think you already know that.
Sheddding tears for a dear soul halfway around the world. Learning lessons from him. Hard to fathom, but true.
You will always hold him in your heart, whether here or gone to Heaven. He IS and will be the WIND. I hope both you and the Boss will remember not just this time but the vibrant joyful times(which we sooo take for granted at the time.)
You tell Toffee, that Max is the owner of the rawhide and to leave it alone! They say you can't take it with you, but I think Max intends to take that rawhide with him! And Max is teaching y'all to not take for granted the rest of the pack(Toffee, it is still Max's rawhide! )
I leave you sadly. I believe I become so wordy because I don't want to "leave" Max. And you Caryl. And the Boss. And the pack. Like it is helping somehow. Silly human. Wish I had the wisdom and deep knowledge of the dog.
God Bless and keep you and help you.
Gentle scritches to Max Dog. I gave Digby a compliment. I give it to Max now. The dog with a heart the size of Texas. For a texan to bestow that title is the highest honor and is not given to just anyone. Max is only the 2nd. (Yeah, we Texans are in a class of our own-whether one considers it good or bad.)
I cannot imagine the physical and mental fatigue you are experiencing. When the unthinkable becomes your "norm" it just sux.
Take good care of each other Caryl and Boss. And when the time comes, I hope you have already decided the dirty old rawhide will go with him. It means a great deal to him, obviously.
(My heartdog's favorite blanky was cremated with her.I had no place permanent to bury her)
I must go, I must leave all of you now. Silly human that I am.
Again, may God hold you. I know my heart is holding you.
{{{{{Sad and respectful hugs}}}}}
Jamie and the Texas sundogs
My word ver is "bravsoul" How fitting!

Marg said...

First of all a Happy Birthday to you Caryl. I hope it was kind of a good day especially since Max is still there. This is a tough time for you and Max and we are thinking about you sending you lots of positive thoughts. Our Mom has gone through this many times and the only thing she can tell you is that you will know when the time has come. Their eyes just seem to tell you.
We will continue to think about you and send tons of prayers and give that Max boy a hug for us. Sorry we haven't been here more. There are not enough hours in the day.
Take care.

Sheila and Bob said...

We continue to walk this journey with Max, you, the Boss and the rest of your two legged and four legged family.
We are by your side a half a world away but we feel like we are next door.
We pray daily that this decision is one you will not have to make that when the time comes to pass that Max will silently Slip The Surly Bonds of Earth...
And Touch the Face of God.
We walk with you by faith that this may be.

Sheila & Bob
Mom & Dad to
Hamish & Sophie

The Life of Riley said...

Happy birthday Caryl - it’s nice to see photos of you and Max, and I’m glad you will have memories of spending your birthday with him.

Timing is such a strange thing - sometimes we can over analyse and think so much about what should be and when, that we go round in circles without a definite answer. We spend so much time going over the same ground because we so desperately want to find the right solution (for us to live with, for everyone else to understand, for so many reasons) that we miss out on the moments we have.

Max is your tour guide, on an unusual tour, and while his day is varied (with high lights, detours and down time) following you around with his chew on your birthday was perhaps his way of showing you that, for today, he’s still comfortable and doing what he does best, which is living in the moment.

As you and your family take a step back from the decision making process, live in the moment with Max and “let Max be” (while carefully watching him) Max will guide you as to where he is at on this journey, and the path he is on (and therefore what may or may not need to be done) will become clearer.

Please know that you and your family are in our thoughts.

Riley and Riley’s mum.

Mrs. JP said...

Happy Birthday to you, dear friend. My favorite picture today is the one of you and Max, second fav has to be king toffee looking at himself. What a little character he is. I'm glad took his rawhide back.
I'll be praying for you and the boss and the whole gang.

Angel Ginger Jasper said...

Happy Birthday and I so hope you managed a god one.I so love the photo's of Max with his bone. I think you do have a tough few days ahead of you. Please take some comfort from knowing you have all your friends behind you. I have you in my thoughts every day and no matter how busy I get I try to make time to check with bated breath how the lovely Max is.. Take care.. With love.. GJ and Carol xxx

the booker man said...

happy birthday to you! i'm glad you were blessed on your special day to be able to share it with dear max.
that king toffee is a riot, by the way. :)
the booker man and asa's mama

Golden Samantha said...

Oh Caryl,
Sorry I missed yesterday's post, but did read it. And today's... Like other commenters, I'm glad you can celebrate your birthday with Max - Happy Birthday! So great that Max took the rawhide away from Toffee and carried it around all day - a light moment. The pictures of you with Max - of Max - I can see that he is gaunt - I am also flummoxed as to where he finds his energy! But as you say, each day is a blessing - a gift to share with our loved ones, no matter animal or human. Pats and rubs to Max - we're thinking of you and hope you are having a good birthday xoxoxoxox,
Sammie and family

TK and Pip said...

Happy Birthday Maxmom!
We send you loving energy. You remain in our purrayers.

Valerie Cummings said...

Hi Caryl Happy Birthday!!! And doesnt King Toffee look handsome???? Oh! And Max just looks gorgeous!!!! How funny he carries his rawhide around with him!!!! Just doesnt want Toffee to have it eh? Happy Blessed day 106! Love kisses and Hugs Valerie Joey and Kealani

How Sam Sees It said...

We wish you another wonderful day together. Sending hugs and prayers,

Sam, Monty, Aaron and Christine

Lorenza said...

Happy Birthday MaxMom!
That raw hide sure looks... interesting!
Sure it was funny to see Max taking it from Toffee and just carrying it around!
I loved all the pictures!
Take care
Kisses and hugs

The Thundering Herd said...

First, Happy Birthday (though I am afraid I am posting too late in the day to reach you on your birthday).

Second, we wish the coming days would not be hard, but we know they will be. Lots of us out here know the pain and are there with you.

Two French Bulldogs said...

Hapee Birthday Max...what great pictures of you and momma and your friends
Benny & Lily

KB said...

Any one of us who has been through a terminal illness with a dearly beloved dog knows how very very tough it can be. The love that you and MaxDog share is special, deep, and will live on forever.

But, in retrospect, I also remember that the very tough days also include moments of radiant love that you'll remember for a lifetime. I'm thinking of all of you, and I hope that you have love-filled days.

Raising Addie said...

Happy Birthday Max's Mom!

KB said it best. Terminal illness and a beloved dog is terribly hard. We know because it broke our mom's spirit until we came into her life.

Every moment of every day is a blessing.... enjoy every moment.

Those of us who have known the love of a dog are lucky. We have what seen many will never experience.

Pure love.

Please give Max a BIG hug from us.

Lots of Luv & Kisses
Addie, Lucie and Hailey

P.S. from our Mom: I have not been around much to enjoy your blog. But just reading this post has me in tears. I'll be praying for the best for Max.

mayziegal said...

Happy birthday, Maxmom! We've been out of town the last few days and haven't been able to visit blogs. So I just read yesterday's and then today's. My heart is with you and your entire family as you walk this difficult path. I do believe Max will let you know when it's time. Until then, know that many prayers and thoughts are being sent to you across the miles.

Amber (and Mayzie)

Tweedles -- that's me said...

Happy Birthday Caryl
I know you are not feeling happiness because you hearts are so heavy.
Again I find myself wordless.
My heart is crying for you.
I saw something today that reminded me of Max. It was one of the Tad Poles and it got legs and was swimming.
Just like when doggys get angel wings,,,, and it reminded me of when the time comes to part.
Our love surrouds you

Tweedles -- that's me said...

And the photos
Oh,,,,, they are awsome
thank you for taking the time to share and speak your feelings

Asta said...

I'm so happy when you have a good day. I was sad that you awent eating, but then pewked up when i heawd you had some chickenYeahhh!
I love that you got youw wawhide to cawwy awound..allthose little things awe wondewful.
youw pictoowes wif youw sweet Mommi awe so vewy special.
We love you so.
I' sending you and Tammy and Toffee my special smoochie kisses and waiting to wead about anothew good day

Bouncing Bertie said...

I don't quite know why I find the image of dear Max wandering around holding but not chewing the recovered rawhide bone so poignant. So often it's the little, unexpected details that work best on the imagination.
My precious and precocious pup has already mastered the digging and treat burying activity!
Best wishes,

Molly the Airedale said...

Happy Birthday, Caryl! We love the picture of you and Max!

Love ya lots,
Maggie and Mitch

Milo and Alfie Marshall said...

We're sorry we missed Maxdog's last post before he went to the bridge. it seemed impawtant to scroll down and read it, and comfort ourselves that he was ok and not in pain.

We are so very sad.

Milo and Alfie Marshall said...

PS: we hadn't realised it was yoor birthday because we read the posts in the wrong order (we scrolled down from the top). We are glad Maxdog shared yoor birthday wiv yoo before going to the bridge. We hope that brought yoo comfort.