We first met at an outlet center, he was there in the Big Dog store, looking forlorn and oh so damn cute. We checked him out, played with him a bit, and then decided to walk away and think about whether or not we wanted him.
We walked about twenty feet before I made up my mind that I had to have him. He was cute, cuddly, and was calling my name. I could hear it.
We brought him home and named him Sebastian. He was a 6 week old Chow/Golden Retriever mix. We took him to the PetSmart and spent the rent money on getting him the "essentials". We bought him a dog dish, some toys, a leash and collar, a brush, some more toys, some treats, some shampoo, some more toys, puppy pee-wee pads, and this wonderful stuff you put on your carpet after they boo-boo, so they don't boo-boo there again. Oh - and some toys.
At first, he was not having anything to do with going up and down the stairs of our apartment, so we had to carry him. After a little while, and a lot of dog bones dipped in peanut butter, he was getting a bit large to carry up and down the stairs, so we made him climb them. He got over it and was soon a champ.
We moved into our house shortly thereafter and bought Sebastian a doggy-door. It took us two days to train him to use it, but he got the idea. We also trained him to sit, lay down, stay, and give a high-five. Yes, my dog would jump up and paw your hand in a high five gesture. He rocked.
When Chris got transferred to San Diego, Sebastian rode in the back of the car, loving life and the fact that we were finally taking him with us on a "vacation". He acclimated to San Diego quickly, loving the milder temps and the doggie beaches. He really LOVED the doggie beach.
About three weeks ago, Sebastian stopped eating his food. We figured he was just tired of his food, because he is a little Jewish man with fur, and stubborn and spoiled as hell. So we changed his food. He didn't like that either. So we boiled chicken and cut it up, and hand fed it to him and he ate that. And he would eat his T-Bonz. Problem is, we fed him a T-Bonz on Sunday night, and on Monday morning, he puked it up. Whole.
Chris took him to the doctor. Tuesday the doc called and said that Sebastian was in severe kidney failure. There was treatment, but he was pretty bad, so it wasn't guaranteed. We made the heart-breaking and immensely difficult decision to put him down. Chris and I took him in on Wednesday, said our goodbyes, and let the staff take him away. Afterwards, they set him up in a room, and we went in and said goodbye again.
This was the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my entire life. Chris agrees. We miss him, and strangely enough, we both sometimes still hear the click-click of his nails on the sidewalk, or his whining at the door. Give 'em hell up there baby! Give 'em hell.