No matter the age, it always seems too soon to say good-bye to our loved ones. Friday morning we experienced a loss so unexpected that I couldn't have even begun to imagine it. The previous day I had to go the dentist for an emergency tooth repair (an uncrowned tooth with a root canal had broken the night before) and was experiencing the mother of all nitrous hangovers when Victor awoke me to tell me that he had found Ginger semi-conscious in the backyard, not far from the outer corner of the cross-fenced area that several Silkens are in. She was gasping and her tongue was blue. I stuck my hand down her throat as far past the tongue as I could reach and found no obstruction. I didn't see her flanks moving with breath but her heart was still beating. I was frantic - it looked so similar to the time that Astyn just dropped and began gasping for air, that I thought it was an aneurysm or cardiac episode or a thrown clot (the 3 scenarios offered by our vet upon Astyn's passing). I felt her heart slip away. Our gorgeous silver girl was gone forever.
We took her to the vet clinic for a necropsy and also asked for an x-ray to determine if perhaps her neck had been broken, as she was not far from the corner of one of the yards. When we let that group out in the morning they run hellbent for leather around and around - so we thought perhaps she had grazed the fence at speed. The x-ray did solve the mystery - although not what we had imagined. Apparently Ginger had picked something up that interested her, and choked on it. It was very far down her trachea
- the vet assured me there was no way I would have been able to reach it - she didn't even think it could have been reached with calipers.
I still feel like I failed. And I'm heartbroken that I won't get to see Ginger's smile again. She was such a joyous girl - never had a bad day in her life. Always happy - sometimes irritatingly so - and never an ugly word to another dog. I am thankful that some of her progeny remain here - Gabe, Siren and Radar. We also have her pups born this past March that we will soon be evaluating seriously.
But nothing will ever replace our glorious, silver beauty.
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