Friday, October 16, 2020

A tribute to my Fur Baby Fudge-Losing my Dog to Canine Parvo Virus

My fur baby Fudge when he was given to me in June of 2020.

It was love at first sight. The very first time I laid my eyes on this cute mixed breed puppy given by my boyfriend (prior to the lockdown and quarantine) I knew he was the fulfillment of my childhood dream of getting a dog for a pet. I immediately named this pomapoo [half pomeranian (his dad) and half miniature poodle (mom)] puppy FUDGE. Simply because of his light brownish color with streaks of black. 
My baby played on my bed with my nephew's pants 

I got myself brokenhearted again. I have just lost my fur baby to the dreaded canine parvo virus last Monday, October 12, 2020. It all happened so fast. I partly blame myself because I brought him to my fiance’s village in Las Pinas when he should’ve been safely home back in my place in Quezon City where we actually live.  Maybe if we hadn’t taken him to Las Pinas, probably he would still be alive by this time.

Fudge was the name of my 6-month-old puppy who was a mixed breed of rare miniature black poodle and brown Pomeranian. My fiancĂ© Jason gave them to me as a gift. He was given to me last June 2020. I thought I was being a good mum to Fudge since he has been vaccinated. 

My baby and I

Fudge was the fulfillment of my childhood dream—growing up, I had always wanted to have a pet dog. But since I am living with so many relatives, I wasn’t allowed to have one. Until Fudge came along. I was so happy to become an official pet parent. I took care of him and pampered him the way I would a baby. I’d buy him treats, clothes, hygiene kits and so much more. I even made sure he would take a bath twice a week so that he won’t be smelling like a dog even if he’s actually one. 

I never knew Fudge would be changing the way I feel for animals, particularly, dogs like him. I used to be frightened about seeing dogs alone. But when Fudge came, he showed me that dogs like him can be friendly, lovable and someone I can get really comfortable with. 

Fudge and Purple Plum Fairy during happier times

In the short span of time that we’ve had, Fudge was able to teach me how to love and take care of someone—be responsible enough. He has shown me his unconditional love. And during those times of stress and melancholy, it was Fudge who became my anchor, my friend, and companion. He listened to all my stories no matter how uninterested they might have been. And even if he never really talked, he made me feel as if he understood me. Touching him was enough to make him feel how much I loved him and cared for him. And seeing the awe and glow in his eyes was enough to make me understand that he felt the same way about me too. 

Fudge and I would play every afternoon

He was like the baby I never had. I would often carry him into my arms and we would also play catch where I would throw his squeaky blue bone toy and he would get them and return them to me while his tails wiggling. Fudge was this sweet bundle of joy who made me feel so special each time he sees me. He made me feel like he was my number one fan—all too excited to see me. And each time he hears my voice, or he’d smell my presence, he would try to get my attention so that I’d come to his cage and get him out to play. At one point, Fudge enjoyed riding the car while being seated on the window as we went on the road. He also liked riding a tricycle ride with me. 

From time to time he'd love giving me sloppy kisses

More kisses from Fudge

Our last photos together during a car ride

I had been busy quite lately as me and my fiancĂ© are about to get married. We were both busy fixing some papers and documents. Jason is also busy with his new business while I took care of other stuff while still doing work from home. It was so unfortunate to see that fateful Thursday of October 8 where my beloved Fudge went from a hyperactive puppy to a lethargic one. I cried so hard seeing him in such a different light. When I put him back into his cage, it felt like Fudge was a stuffed toy dog because he felt so light and didn’t move a muscle. I also vividly remember how he looked at me that day—his eyes were so empty, so hollow. I didn’t understand why. I just knew we needed to see a vet soon because Fudge had also lost his appetite and didn’t want to eat his food. 

You could see in Fudge's eyes how happy he was right?

We were busy from Friday until Saturday that we only had time last Sunday—October 11, 2020 where we had the opportunity to bring Fudge to the vet. It was too late by then. Fudge was found to be canine parvo positive. Parvo is a gruesome, damnable thing. It’s something to be prevented at all costs. It makes the dog’s insides raw. It HURTS. It hurts to eat, and it hurts to drink. So your puppies don’t want to do those things. Imagine needing a drink of water—badly—and not being able to do that, because it hurts too much. 

It was an early morning car ride that excites the young puppy

I’ve seen Fudge during the final stages of his parvovirus. It felt like watching death from dehydration since that’s essentially what’s happening. It felt so sick not being able to do anything. We were given two options by the vet: confinement which would cost us too much (at this time, we had very little money) but without any assurance given that Fudge would be able to survive or bring him home and give him home treatment. Jason and I chose the latter. It would be really expensive to have Fudge confined and we did the math, if we had chosen confinement, the amount we would’ve spent would be enough to buy us a new dog. And there wasn’t any assurance. Had there been an assurance that Fudge would survive, by all means, I’m willing to spend on it. But again, there was none. 

Not only was Fudge happy, but I was also too happy to see him so happy. I didn't know it would be our last pic together. 

We tried nursing Fudge with home treatment and it was no fun because you have to stay up with them 24 hours a day. Your pet will require constant attention for most of this time and so you will not be doing much sleeping.

On Sunday night, Fudge can still drink water on his own back then where we put dextrose powder for his hydration since Fudge had been vomiting too often. I saw him gave his last kisses to Jason when he made him eat via injectable. We tried nursing Fudge with home treatment and it was no fun because you have to stay up with him 24 hours a day. Fudge had required constant attention for most of his time and so any pet parent wouldn’t be able to do much sleeping.

It really hurts to see Fudge in such kind of state. I wish I was able to do something to alleviate the pain he felt inside. I wish he understood what I had been telling him. I felt that he had given his best to survive and fight for his life. But then, parvovirus is such fatal—that only a few dogs who had a better immune system would survive and recover. Fudge’s best wasn’t enough or perhaps it was truly his time to go. 

Fudge on his last few breaths lying down on his cage, a few moments before he died.

On Monday morning, October 12, 2020, Jason said Fudge has blood on his poop. And it wasn’t something to be happy about. It means he might not be able to make it. It meant the virus has gotten into Fudge’s intestines. It also meant his time is running out.

And so the time eventually came…when it was time for me to bid my dear Fudge goodbye. I could see Fudge slowly breathing hard each time. He laid there helpless on his cage as I touched him and rubbed his tummy. I could hear him utter sounds of deep pain. During his last breath, I told him how much I loved him and that I was happy to have him as my very first pet and that he was the fulfillment of my childhood dream—I thanked him for the happy memories he had given me and the fun times we’ve had together in the last 4 months. I told him how he made me so happy, how playing with him was enough to make my day. I told him what a good dog he had always been. I said sorry and apologized for bringing him over to Las Pinas when he should’ve been home.  I was sorry I got too busy with the wedding preparations that unconsciously I took him for granted. I got too focused on the wedding and my work that I hardly noticed him anymore. Had I seen him at the onset of the parvovirus, I wish I would’ve brought him right away to the vet—then maybe, he would still be alive today. I whispered to him that if it’s his time to go, I am setting him free. I wouldn’t want Fudge to experience pain anymore. 

I will always remember the fun times I've had with Fudge, my first pet, my first love. 

I never knew it was difficult to lose someone who has given you so much joy and wonderful memories until now. I never knew I could get so attached to my pet that it felt like a part of me had died with him. He has shown me in the last six months his affection for me as his pet owner/master.

Prior to getting sick, Fudge accidentally gave a long scratch on my left leg as he was too excited to see me when I made him out of his cage. It was a remembrance of sorts that I will always cherish and remember by.

Parvo is spread by contact with the feces, blood, or vomit of an infected dog. It can also be present in the soil or environment. The only means to kill the parvovirus is by using bleach to disinfect the area/environment or any item used by a dog who has had parvo.

For dog owners, please vaccinate your dog even if it means spending your grocery money. Just do it. You do NOT want to see parvo.

To my dear baby Fudge, I love you so much. I am terribly sorry that you have gone too soon. You didn’t deserve that parvovirus. I’m so sorry you did not live long enough to witness my wedding where you should’ve played a big part. Your memories will remain in my heart forever.  Losing you from parvo meant losing a family. You were our baby, our source of joy—and those shouldn’t have to stop just because you have left us. Even if years from now or in the future, I’d be having another dog, I’m sure he’d also be as adorable as you but nobody would replace you. My only consolation is that I know wherever you are now, you are no longer in pain. Run free baby Fudge, off to the rainbow bridge where I’d be seeing you someday.

My lullaby for you will always echo in my ear: “Padjee, padjee, padjee ko. Padjee, padjee baby ko.”

So long, ‘til we meet again my dear Fudge. I love you!!!



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