Friday, May 18, 2007

Saibh 1999-2007

This morning our dog, Saibh, died suddenly from a suspected heart attack. She had no previous illness nor any problems we were aware of. She’s been my constant companion since I started working from home four years ago. Obviously, I was her companion, too.

This morning she went spare, as she often did, when another dog appeared in the park next to our house. I went to her to bring her inside, as I often did. She looked at me, then back at the fence barking all the while, turned slightly, raised her head and then stumbled a bit as I got to her. I picked her up as she went limp. She died in my arms.

I tried to revive her, hoping she’d only fainted, but I knew better. I rushed her to the vet, breaking speed limits by enough, probably, to threaten my licence. It was too late.

Nigel met me at the vet, and they gave us several minutes alone with her to say goodbye. She looked like she was sleeping and would wake up at any minute. She didn’t wake up.

We’re at a loss. The house seems so quiet, so empty. The cat can’t figure out what’s happened, of course. He’s lucky, but he’ll miss her, too, once he realises she’s not coming back.

There are people who think that devotion to a pet—a companion animal—is silly or worse. Fuck them. This dog meant the world to us, and our world got a little bit smaller today.

Goodbye, Saibh. We’ll miss you.

There won’t be any podcast and probably no blog posts until next week sometime when I feel a bit better.

Update 19 May: We've had some wonderful words of sympathy here and by email. Thank you to you all—your words mean a lot to us. Special thanks to my friend Jason who put up a great blog post about Saibh, sharing some of his own memories. At times like this, I love the Internet.


Anonymous said...

How awful, Arthur. I am terribly sorry and totally understand the shock of such a sudden loss, having gone through it myself.

Anonymous said...

That was me above. Oops!

mike hipp said...

Oh Arthur I am so sorry to hear about your puppy. I heard her on your last podcast shaking her collar just yesterday.

I know it has to happen but I wish dogs could just go straight up to doggie heaven instead of having to suffer at all.

At least you can be thankful that you were there with her. Many dog owners can't say that about their dogs when they die.

god's speed Saibh.... I didn't know you but I will miss you.

Anonymous said...

Oh no,so sorry to hear about Saibh. That's awful. I feel for you and I'm thinking about you both.

lost in france said...

I am so sorry -- please accept my condoleances. I am sure that Saibh was not just any companion but a longtime one at that.

d said...

I'm so sorry. =(

Kalv1n said...

That's terrible news, Arthur. I'm so sorry to hear that. And it sounds like it was so completely unexpected. I agree, they are companion animals. You have my deepest condolences and hope that you have what you need to mourn your loss.

CondoBlogger said...

Arthur... wow. So sorry to hear. My best to you and Nigel while you mourn Saibh.

My pup Buddy was my alarm clock most mornings. He would come sit by my bed and pant loudly when it was time to get up. Sometimes shake his head to make his collar jingle if the panting wasn't enough. I swear to you that for weeks after he died I woke to the sound of his panting only to find my room empty once I opened my eyes. It still happens occasionally to this day, 8 years later.

So I agree, the level of connectedness between pup and pup lover is much stronger than some people know.

RIP Saibh.

Anonymous said...

Arthur, I'm so sorry to hear about Saibh. The news is just heartbreaking. My thoughts and sympathies are with you both.

Arthur Schenck said...

Thank you all so much for your comments and support--it's meant a lot to us both. We're doing better now, and part of that is due to the support we've gotten, including from all of you. Thank you so much. A big hug and a kiss from us both.

Reed said...

I am so very sorry to hear that.

RambleRedhead said...


I have to add my name to the list to tell you how sorry I am about the loss of your pet. It is a tragic thing when it is so sudden. I know how you feel since I lost my cat of 14 yrs a while ago and it still hurts and it didn't help that Joe's new cat looks just like my cat.

I wish you all the best during this tough time and glad you see your dog as part of the family.