Thursday, August 4, 2016

What We Do for Love

When Barkley came up lame in the early winter of 2013 in what we hoped was just a pulled ligament from romping in the deep snow, one issue was the back stairs of our little Mission Bungalow.  They are VERY steep.  He did good using a cloth tote bag with the ends cut out, placed under his chest where we could "lift" the weaker half on his way down.

But after a couple weeks at my crash pad in another city where I work, hours away, he was hurting to the point I knew even that would not work.  I called my husband, who made the above stairs.  Now in the picture - they are not done, it was just set out for some measurements.  The final product would have some blocks under the middle to make the hinge angle positive rather than negative  Then to connect the top to the porch where Barkley didn't have to step up or down, keeping it secure, there would be eyebolts into the riser for the first step and then some carriage bolts added as pegs under the ramp to hook into the eyebolts in the center where it folded to keep it straight.  Then rails, so Barkley couldn't tumble off, When it wasn't being used, it could be folded up and put on the sun porch.  It was an experiment.  While Barkley was being overnighted at the vet to do some additional tests and a biopsy, I made the 8 hour round trip to check on it and bring emergency sandwiches.

Making it with just one length of wood, would get him to the ground but at too steep an angle.
So my husband made and added another section, then hinged so it would fold in half  to carry like a ladder to the garage or just straight up the stairs into sun room (which was just storage).
With someone walking him down the steps to his left, we figured he could learn quickly and safely, it's like the ramps at the dog park for agility, only bigger.  The longer length could also be used on another set of stairs to the basement if needed in the event of a tornado.   All for about $30 and a promised sandwich for the engineer.  Still not done here, but you get the idea.

Please can I have a skateboard?


But Barkley never got a chance to use it. He was in too much pain to travel again and his days with us were short, the tests showing very advanced bone cancer. But in looking at the photos of the ramp now, and the amount of work my husband put into it, well into the wee hours of the night,after working long days as an engineer, to craft it in two days, I realized just how lucky I am to have him.

If you've read The Book of Barkley you know our basic story.  We were friends for many years online (I knew a couple members of his family) but due to the age difference (24 years, though we are both the Chinese "Year of the Dog") we always said "well too bad. . . . ." and then we met in person---he, Barkley and I.  After that, the three of us weren't apart much, and when I fell on ice, walking Barkley and tore my meniscus, on our first official weekend together as a couple and he cancelled his Christmas to drive me hundreds of miles to an orthopedic surgeon, cancelling a trip to his parents to tend to Barkley and I while I recovered---I knew I had a keeper.

And he's been wonderful to Abby as she got comfortable after being in a shelter for five months.


We have an anniversary this month of our first date - and I just wanted to say.  EJ - you are the best husband ever and Abby is one lucky dog.

11 comments:

  1. I know just what you mean about doing anything for our pets. We had to have a screen room built on the back of our new house with a big 12 x 14 "litter box" at one end just so the dogs wouldn't be outside where they might turn into dinner for a hungry hawk or owl.

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  2. Furst... THANK YOU Abby fur saying YES to going to the Dance with me... and THANK your PEEPS fur allowing me to escourt you.
    Now I KNOW I can never "MEASURE" Up to Mr. E.J.... beclaws as a Gentleman... he set the BAR SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooo High I could NEVER reach it... butt I will do my BEST to be a proper escort for a Lovely Lady of your stature.
    OMD Mr. E.J. is ONE IN 87 BAZILLION. YOU and Your MOM are very much LUCKY LADIES.

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  3. Awwwww. He sounds like a grreat doggy daddy!

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  4. Awwwwwwe! Yuppers, you gots a keeper fursure! Congrats on your anniversary! and, hey, ask him if he can clone himself....BOL
    Kisses,
    Ruby ♥

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  5. we are lucky too - our dad does a lot for us - to make our lives easier
    hugs
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

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  6. Yep. My husband and I would do anything for our pups = past and present.
    KZK

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  7. Aw, that is so sweet! Yes, that was a labor of love job on that ramp. The skateboard photo cracked us up!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

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  8. What a sweet story! He did all that in just two days!

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    Replies
    1. Yes, he was getting set to put up the support pieces and the rails and Barkley was in pain to the point it wasn't manageable so we made the painful decision to release him from his suffering. We have the bridge in the basement, he'll finish it with rails as we plan to foster seniors when I retire and they may need it, even as we've rebuilt the steps to make them much less steep.

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    2. Yes, he was getting set to put up the support pieces and the rails and Barkley was in pain to the point it wasn't manageable so we made the painful decision to release him from his suffering. We have the bridge in the basement, he'll finish it with rails as we plan to foster seniors when I retire and they may need it, even as we've rebuilt the steps to make them much less steep.

      Delete

Welcome to The Book of Barkley. This blog was created for more memories of Barkley as well as updates on Abby the Senior rescue Lab,who we adopted in 2014.

Stop in and say hello. 100% of book sales are donated to animal rescue organizations across the U.S. and Canada and Search Dog Foundation. If you have a non-profit animal organization and would like autographed copies of the book for fundraisers or a blog post featuring your organization please contact me at cliodna58@gmail.com