(January 15, 1986 - December 12, 2002)
Twiggy was born January 15, 1986, in Angeles City, Republic of the Philippines. She was a steady force in my life for nearly 17 years.
February 25, 2002
She was fiercely protective of her family. At the same time, she was a friendly, out-going dog. She made friends easily with humans and was tolerant of other dogs. Her personality was probably because she's part Golden Retriever.
Since she was nearly 17 years old when she died (just one month short of turning 17), she had some geriatric type problems. She had arthritis in her legs, but medication took care of that. She had fewer teeth than she used to have and she was about 95% deaf. In January 2002, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor, which isn't as bad as it sounds. Because of her age and the slow growth of that type of tumor, she was far more likely to die of old age than of the tumor. She also was officially senile. She had what's called Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome. We started her on medication for it and it did wonders for about 8 months. It's not a medication that works indefinitely. Finally, it was the cognitive dysfunction coupled with a newer tumor on her foot that made me finally realize that it was time for her to go to doggie heaven. It was the hardest decision I've ever had to make. Those of you who know me, know that she was my life.
Twiggy was also very head strong. If you wanted her to do something, she had to agree, or it wouldn't be done.
She was pretty smart, too. Back when she could hear, if you told her to do something and she didn't want to do it, she'd turn her head and not look at you and pretend she couldn't hear you. Of course, because of that, it took a long time to realize that she'd actually lost her hearing instead of just ignoring us.
Another thing that made us realize that she was a really smart little girl was when we found out she could spell. We were all sitting in the living room watching TV and she wanted us to let her outside. Neither Biker nor I really felt like getting up and she continued to sit there and stare at us. So I said to Biker, "I think she wants
O-U-T." When she heard O-U-T she jumped up and went running to the back door. We were so stunned, she got her way (as she normally does).
The best thing about Twig was her personality. She was very easy going and every time we brought another dog into the house, she was great. She took on the maternal role and took her job seriously. When Tess had an operation several years ago and was recovering at home, Twiggy stayed right by her side.
She was also pretty tolerant of Shelby and Annie. Shelby had a habit of wanting to play with Twiggy and nipped at her. Twiggy laid there and just let Shelby nip away. Of course, even the most tolerant dog gets fed up. When that happened, Twiggy snapped at Shelby, but she was careful not to actually touch Shelby. She just got her point across.
By the time Annie came into the household, Twig was too old to care. If Annie tried to play with her, Twig would just go on with what she was doing. Woe to Annie if she were standing where Twiggy wanted to walk.
I will miss Twiggy terribly.