Jun 4, 2014

Lennon Marie Collins

Our precious girl officially has a name...
Lennon Marie Collins
Lennon is a name we have loved for a long time- we knew if we were to have a girl her name would be Lennon.  We plan to call her Lenni for short :)
Marie is after my sisters middle name.  We think Lennon Marie has a nice ring to it and we cannot wait to meet our sweet girl!

Jun 2, 2014

Dutch Collins 5/1/2014

If you know Chris and I then you know that our dogs mean the world to us.  We both came into our relationship each with a dog of our own.  Beazley came with me and Dutch with Chris.  We learned quickly that not only did Chris and I love each other from very early on but so did our boys.  They became the best of friends and got along so well.  Where one went the other followed close behind.  Life with both of them was so fun, they definitely kept us on our toes, they were our babies.

In November 2013 we noticed that our boy Dutch wasn't feeling well.  So we took him to the vet where he was later diagnosed with a tumor on his spleen- a Hemangioma Sarcoma.  We knew that the prognosis was eventually terminal and instead of putting him through surgery and chemo we decided to just let him come home and live the remainder of his life with us.  Within a couple of days of the diagnosis he was feeling much better and was back to acting like a crazy man.  Over the next 6 months we babied him, loved him really hard, and let him get away with more than we should have because we didn't know when his time would come to leave our family. 

 (Brother always close by)

(Watching over his sick brother)

At the end of April we noticed that he wasn't feeling well again.  In the past it was just something his body had to work through and usually in a couple of days he was back to normal.  After about 5 days passed with no improvement we knew this was probably the beginning of the end.  So we decided to make the best of the situation- we took him to the beach.  Dutch had never had the chance to go to the beach in his 8 years of life.  For one reason or another, it just never happened.  So we packed up on a Friday and headed to the coast.  Even though Dutch wasn't feeling well, he perked up when we go to the beach.  He had the time of his life.  He loved the sand and the breeze on the beach.  He ran his heart out and loved chasing the Frisbee. 

 (On the way to the beach)
 (Dutch's first trip to the beach- 5 days before he passed)

It was a short trip and we came home the next day, but Chris and I were both thankful that we had the chance to get him to the beach.  Just a short 5 days later we knew his time had come.  I stayed home with him this day because he could no longer get up or walk.  Around 4:30 that afternoon I called Chris and told him he needed to come home because it was time.  We took Dutch up to his vet and we were able to put him to sleep while we were by his side.  We then took him out to Chris' parents house and buried him on their land.  He has a beautiful grave adorned with 'Earth Angel' and 'Forget me Not' flowers.  It is special to us that we can go visit his grave whenever we want.

To say we miss him would not do justice to the void we have in our lives and in our hearts.  He was such a fun loving, loyal, and energetic dog.  He was the light of Chris' life, and they spent nearly everyday for the last 8 years together.  He loved Chris back immensely- there was never a question who is master was or where his loyalty lied.  Many people were frightened of Dutch at first meeting but it only took about 2 minutes to realize that he was just a big baby.  All he sought was love and affirmation from everyone he met.  It is true when they say you will fall in love with a pit bull smile.  Dutch had a smile that we will never forget. 

While we would have loved for Dutch to live long enough to meet our little girl due in November, we know that it was his time to go.  We all miss his crazy personality terribly, including Beazley.  It has been hard on him losing his best friend.  We are all adjusting to life without him.  Our only concern with Dutch's diagnosis was to make sure he never suffered.  We know that he lived his life to the max even until the very end- and we hope he knows how loved he was then and even now.