Now that all the new puppy hubbub has settled, one thing has become very clear.
Lexie is failing.
At first I noticed she wasn’t able to completely jump onto the couch. Then she started laying at awkward angles, with her back legs splayed. Today I winced as her hind legs barely supported her body.
When we took her in for her annual shots a couple months ago, Matt and I mentioned we were looking for a second dog. The vet strongly suggested that we not get a puppy. She said Lex was looking great for her 14 years. Still, her body was delicate, and probably not up for puppy play.
There’s also her recent diagnosis of doggie dementia to consider. She’s in the early stages, but starting to show more symptoms. Sometimes I’ll find her staring into a corner; other times she won’t respond when I call her name. I never thought to ask how a puppy could affect this condition.
Somehow the vet’s great advice faded when we found Charlie. He was gentle. She would set a great example for him as he matured. He would inspire a little spunk in the senior Lex.
Now as I watch her struggle, I can’t help but wonder if I hastened her decline. I pray that I am wrong.
I made an appointment with the vet for tomorrow morning. I’m hoping she’ll tell me I am overreacting. That Lex is just tired. That I can’t expect her to always keep pace with a puppy.
Time is not on my side. So all I can do is hope.