In memory of Nicki 11-22

I thought she might live forever! But as we all sadly know-that does not happen.

I was lucky to adopt Nicki when she was 6 in July of 2011 and I reluctantly said goodbye to her on August 16 2019 when she was almost 15 years old – 14 years, 9 months, 15 days.  I guess for a dog that IS forever!

It was cancer that ultimately took her. Arthritis, fused discs and spondylosis only slowed her down.

Nicki 11-22

She had been in 2 homes in her early life in Lincoln before she was an “honorary” GRRIN dog. You could tell by her ears that she had something else in her chemistry. Her ears went up and then down – definitely not golden retriever ears! After she came into my life I did a DNA test and found out she was 50% German Shepherd and only 25% Golden Retriever.  So that is where her attitude came from….didn’t matter to me and Rex #08-36, she was part of our family now. It was fantastic to watch her come out of her shell once she decided she was safe and loved!

When Rex passed away 10/30/15 I found out just how much she had relied on him.  She was a little lost for a while but so was I.

She was not fond of other dogs – Rex was Nicki approved – but outsiders…nope! She made that even more clear after Rex was gone.  My usual plan of always having 2 dogs was out the window.  Nicki got her way and was the queen of the house for her remaining years.

The “Prince-Ass” ruled the roost for sure! She was a powerful dog that wanted to go after every rabbit and squirrel on walks, my bad ankles are proof of that.  Age and arthritis eventually reduced that to a stiff hop towards any critter that was in the backyard. She loved riding in the truck and it was said that her nose and head would always get to there first! She swam, she ran, she rolled in the grass, she snuggled, she had a great time everywhere!

Thursday 8/15 I came home and noticed the sudden appearance of a lump in her mouth. I took her to the vet Friday thinking it was an abscess that needed to be drained. It did not drain. They took a sample and set it to the lab.  Knowing that it would be risky at her age for her to go through surgery to remove it, I was trying to figure out what to do.  Nicki decided to answer that question for me. She had seemed weaker than normal when I got home to take her to the vet but I thought once she was up and moving she would be better.  When we left the vet and got home she was markedly weaker.  She had also started to seem confused. I got her in the house and she went to sleep.  Throughout the afternoon she continued to weaken.  I made the decision that we all dread, made the call to Dr. Jensen and he came over that night to set her free.  When the results came back it was a cancerous neoplasm. She fought the good fight, probably longer than I know.

It has been 17 years since I have not had a dog or two. Nicki was the 6th GRRIN dog that I have adopted over the years, each one leaving an indelible mark in my life and each one taking a piece of my heart with them when they leave.

This story has been long but Nicki led a long – and I hope – happy & fun filled life with me. My truck co-pilot is gone and the loss is so very painful.  Thank you GRRIN! THANK YOU NICKI – have fun up there with the others until I get there!