When love just isn’t enough


This is the hardest post I have ever done. I’m still not sure I can follow through and do it. I have been MIA to our dog blog for two weeks.

Skirvee is gone, we lost him two weeks ago and my heart is shattered in a million pieces.

I met Karen when she adopted her first two greyhounds. From the beginning we were fast friends. Over time, the friendship developed and I eventually moved in with her. Day after day, we would sit and talk over a cup of coffee surrounded by our blended family of greyhounds. It was pretty clear that the sun rose and set for the greyhounds.

One day over coffee, we talked about how fun it would be to have a greyhound puppy.

So of course, I threw it out to the universe “We want a puppy!” And sure enough, through our greyhound connections a 5 1/2 month greyhound puppy appeared. He had a crippled paw, so racing would never be part of his world and he didn’t have a name.

My youngest daughter Holly named him after the skull and cross bone Paul Frank character Scurvy.

We met up with the adoption group president in a parking lot. In the back of our minds, we thought he would be a cuddly little puppy. Not. He was huge. He was our baby.

Over the years he earned a million nick names, but the one that stuck was “Screechin’ Skirvee Kaddiddlehopper.” He was our biggest dog and our biggest weanie.

He was a total love bug, not a mean bone in his body. He loved toys and treats and cuddles and running around. Skirvee was the picture of joy.

When he turned 8 years old, his two twin sisters came to join him at Greyhound Gardens. I was thrilled. I always wanted litter mates and now I had three of the most beautiful fawn dogs in the world.

In my heart, Skirvee would live forever, he should have lived forever. He was our goof ball.

On the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, he was just a little off, he really didn’t have an appetite which was unusual for him. I almost took him in, but I couldn’t really come up with anything concrete to tell the Dr. On Thanksgiving, he threw up a couple of worms and Karen and I were ecstatic. We knew why his appetite was off and it was a pretty easy fix. Friday morning he chose not to eat again and we were off to the vet clinic for x rays and bloodwork.

X rays were clean and the blood test results would be back the next morning. At midnight he was weak, on Saturday morning he couldn’t get up. We were waiting at the door when the vet got there about 7:15 am.

The blood tests were back and they really didn’t say much except that the platelets were a little low. We had gone through auto immune hemolytic anemia with Adam and although it was rough for awhile, he survived five years after diagnosis. We were confident that we could get Skirvee through this too.

We made an appointment for an ultrasound in Portland at 1 pm and so we left Skirvee at the vet clinic on fluids. At 10 am, a bruise appeared on Skirvee’s belly. His Dr. was worried that he might have DIC, a coagulation disease. We were gone for two hours doorstep-to-doorstop for the ultrasound. The ultrasound was clean and the plan was that we would start treatment for the auto immune disease. We took him back to our clinic to start treatment and get him hooked back up to the fluids.

He was tired, but he wasn’t in distress. We kissed and told him how much we loved him and said we would be back shortly after we ran the dogs at home.

It was our last kiss. Ever so peacefully, Skirvee left us for greener racetracks.

Our hearts were shattered. He was our baby, our Screechin’ Skirvee Kaddidlehopper. The house has been so empty and so not the same. It was DIC, there was nothing we could do. Sometimes all of the love in our hearts and all of the money in the bank and even the smartest, most savvy veterinarians are thwarted by an ailing body that says “I’m done.”

That boy had a firm grip on our hearts and we will miss him forever. The bunny’s are yours now Skirvee. Go get ’em boy. We love you.


Skirvee • May 17, 2002 to November 30, 2013

17 Replies to “When love just isn’t enough”

  1. Oh Terri. I just don’t know how much more your and Karen’s hearts can take. I’m so sorry to read this news. He sounds like he was a very special boy. I love the pictures your shared. My heart hurts for you and Karen. Run free now, Skirvee. ?

  2. I am so sorry for your loss. But what a blessing you have had all those years and years yet to come with the memories and love that will always be there.
    This is my favorite:
    “It occurs to me that every time I lose a dog, he takes a piece of my heart?with him. Then every new dog who comes into my life gifts me with a ?piece of his heart. Therefore, if I should live long enough, all the ?components of my heart will be dog, and I will then become as generous ?and loving as dogs are!” ~ Author Unknown

  3. I had a bad feeling when you weren’t posting that it was either Flocko or Skirvee. You’ve had such a sad year. I have no words of comfort. I can only say how very sorry I am and my heart hurts for you as well.

  4. I am so sorry you have lost this handsome lad. He’ll have plenty of friends at The Bridge and he’ll be happy there until you go and fetch him.

    Sending you hugs.

  5. I remember that day well and you being shocked at the size of your “baby”. That little guy had the best of everything all the years he resided at the “Gardens” plus all the love you had to give him. Your heart is broken and filled with grief now, but in time it will fill with all the happy memories that belong to just the two of you. He is right now at the Bridge wringing his paws telling all his greyhound buddies they have to help him find a big enough place for you, Karen and all the Garden Greyhounds and get it ready. Sitting here thinking back through all the years I have known you and just think — this all started with a little black greyhound girl. Please know my heart goes out to you both over this loss.

  6. That just sucks! What a sweet boy. I feel your pain. We let my Stella go on nov 30th too. She was our first greyhound and my heart dog. It is amazing how empty the house feels without her presence. I’d like to think that Stella and Skirvee met at the Bridge, crossed together, and are now fast friends.

  7. Oh no, I am so very sorry. He was such a handsome boy. Lots of friends greeted him at the bridge. I know you hearts are breaking.

  8. Terri, Karen–I am just gutted by this posting. I do not know either of you personally, we have never met face to face but when I read your postings and enjoy your photos, I feel as if you have let me into a very private place. I had just seen a photo of Skirvee on “The Pack” site. So funny that it was just two days ago.
    I know there are no words that will make your pain go away. No amount of commiserating will soften the blow. I have said this before that you two are incredibly amazing, what you do for these greyt animals, what you give of yourselves. I am so terribly sorry that you lost your love. I cannot stop the tears. Isn’t that crazy!?!
    I wish there was some way to make these greyts live forever. Every time I read of the passing of a greyt, I grab Ms. P and hug her crazily. She looks at me like I am nuts but I try to absorb her essence.

  9. I am sorry for your loss. I know how much our dogs mean to us all. It is such a sad thing that their life span is so much shorter than ours and that Skirvee left earlier yet. My heart goes out to you both.

  10. Oh my goodness Terri and Karen, he had a wonderful life with yall. He gave so much joy and love, he knew your love!! My heart feels your loss.

  11. well I’ve enjoyed your family tales for some time in quiet admiration and all I’ve got is ‘… well shit…and a tear or two for you all.

  12. I am so stunned by this news. Our hearts certainly go out to you. He was so lucky to have had the life he did with you, but that doesn’t make it sting or ache any less. Just know that we are terribly sorry!

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