Did I hear that right? .....the WORST thing? .... my brain was not only trying to awaken, but also process those horrible words. I pulled myself off the side of the bed as Don continued..
"It is KC."
KC is one of our Pembroke Welsh Corgis. He is an old boy...14 or 15. I will have to go and look at his papers to see for sure. When we bred, he was the sire and the most magnificent looking Corgi we have ever owned. That says a lot because I have owned 15 Corgis over the last 32 years. KC, or Kiss Me KC as is his registered name, as a young vital dog, loved to be outside. He chased the sheep, slept in the chicken coop and would even try to herd the cats... but in the last year, his health was really declining. His medicine cabinet was getting larger than ours. About a year and a half ago, we decided to make KC an indoor dog. We still let him out during the day if the weather was nice, but he had to come in every night and lately I have been keeping my eye on him when he was outside...since both his sight and hearing had become somewhat impared.
When Don said "It is KC." and knowing how much I adored him, I thought KC had passed away and Don found him. I was wrong. That would have been the easier thing to hear. KC had wandered into Chastain's paddock as we were still keeping him separated from the other horses while he recovered from his bout of colic.
Chastain shows signs of being chased or attacked by dogs when he was a young colt. He hates any animal about the size of a dog. I have even seen him pin his ears at the sheep.
KC wandered into Chastain's pen and laid down in a sunny sandy spot for a nap. Don was coming out of our home and looked down over the rail just as Chastain had sighted KC. Chastain pinned his ears and came right to KC. He reared up a bit and struck KC with his front hoof. Don was screaming and flying down the stairs trying to get there in time. KC started to bark.. over and over again. Chastain did not heed Don until he had grabbed the gate chain. By that time, our sweet KC had been struck both in the face and in the back. Chastain was turned around and getting ready to fire one last blow to KC with his back feet .. by this time, KC was rolled over on his back - yet still barking. Chastain ran away as Don opened the gate.
Don grabbed KC and moved him into the barn isle. That is when he came to get me.
Feeding me the details as I was getting up sickened me. I went in the kitchen and called our vet. It was 5:20PM, so I had to get the answering service to contact him, letting him know we were on our way. Fortunetly, he had not left the office and waited for us to get there.
We gently picked KC up, wrapped him in a blanket and put him in the front seat of our truck. Don drove and I sat in the middle. It seemed to take forever to get there. KC barked the entire time, a sure sign of severe concussion. He had some blood coming from his mouth, but upon inspection, it seemed to be from loose teeth. He was trying to move closer to me, but at the same time he was very disoriented.
This was a very hard vet visit for me. I stroked KC's body when we were in the truck and I knew his back had been injured. Even I could feel the exact place where his spine was out of allignment and it just broke my heart. KC is a member of our family, who had become even more intimate since he was living under our feet.
The exam did not take very long. I was right about many things. He had a severe concussion and his back was broken. He had no movement or feeling in one of his back legs and only a small amount in the other. As the doctor was feeding us the information, I looked at Don. He was crying just as hard as I was. The minute our eyes met, we knew there was only one choice... the most difficult one for any animal lover to make.... we had our beloved Kiss Me KC put down.
Don had to leave the room. I would not. I will never leave my animals alone when they are put down. I softly stoked his head and repeated the words I have told him all of his life. "What a good boy you are KC.... what a very good boy" Our vet gave him a small amount of the anesthesia at first .. so he would just fall asleep before injecting the fatal dose. My heart ached as KC's brain tried to make him take 3 more breaths... but then all was quiet and my sweet KC was gone. His time with us was done.
We placed a plastic bag around his back legs and then wrapped him back up in his blanket. Don cradeled him into his arms and walked back to the truck. I got into the truck and Don handed KC over to me. All the way home, we both cried. I stroked his head and thought how blessed we were to have such a wonderful dog in our lives.
Kiss Me KC is burried right next to his mate Wiggle B Chrissy who passed away in 2009.
I drank a whole bottle of wine that night ... and still had trouble sleeping...