Friday, August 17, 2012

The Last Chapter

This will likely be my last post - and, at some point soon I will try to figure out how to delete the blog - if that's possible. I started this blog back in 2009 to help me organize my thoughts on training, try to put things in perspective, and track our progress. At that time we were starting our quest for the UD (Utility Dog) title. We achieved that goal as well as the ultimate goal of earning the UDX title. Since that was the main focus of our blog, there hasn't been much to post about in Jackson's 'retirement.'

It was a great journey and I am really appreciative of the comments and support we received from our blogger friends. And, I will continue to follow the many blogs I discovered when I started blogging.

Jackson was my first attempt to train for competitive obedience. We were both learning as we went - through trial and many errors! What I learned was - the best thing about obedience is the relationship you forge with your dog. That's  also what makes this time so terribly difficult. Jackson has been diagnosed with osteosarcoma (bone cancer). It came on suddenly a few weeks ago and there is no cure. After consultation with experts at the vet school we decided that the best course of action for Jackson would be pain management. Osteosarcoma can be treated agressively with amputation and chemo/radiation, which may buy you some time. However, because of Jackson's age and size, this is not an option we would choose.

He is currently on Rimadyl, Tramadol and Gabapentin for pain management. He's eating, drinking and resting comfortably, however, he has trouble at times moving around. So.... we spend our days doing what he enjoys most - laying on the front porch keeping an eye on the neighborhood : )

Hug your dogs and don't worry too much about qualifying and earning titles because when the last chapter is written, they really don't matter that much.


Jennifer H. said...

Ohh Kathie. :( My heart just broke when I read the title of your post. I am SO very sorry to hear about Jackson's diagnosis. You, Willie, Jackson and Jolie will be in our thoughts and prayers. Give the big hug a scritch for me. {{{{{{{{{{Kathie}}}}}}}}}

Laura, Lance, and Vito said...

I am so sorry. You will definitely be in all of our thoughts and prayers.

I wouldn't delete the blog just yet. It can be a nice keepsake to look back on years down the road.

Amy / Layla the Malamute said...

I'm so, so sorry. My lab was just diagnosed with Osteo a few weeks ago as well, and we're doing the same route as you. It was (like yours) an absolute shock. I thought it was just a regular old-age limp. Never in a million years did I think that in a few short weeks I wouldn't have my good boy with me. We're also spending our days resting and enjoying each others company.

Are you on Facebook? My blog is private now and I'm not sure if you're one of the readers. If not, I'd definitely send you an invitation. Either way I'd hate to lose touch with you completely. You and Jackson are in my thoughts and prayers. This is a horrible thing to have to go through, but remember that you're absolutely not alone. Casey and I are right there with you.

JD said...

Best wishes navigating this chapter of your guy's life. Comfort is really the best kindness you can give.

Laura is right...your blog is a great keepsake and I don't know a single dog person who doesn't wish for "just a few more" special mementos.

If you do decide to delete your blog, you might consider making a book of it. Both Blurb ( and Blog2Print ( are services that will make a printed book out of your blog, which would be a great remembrance down the road.

eastofeden said...

My heart breaks for you. Thank you for sharing your incredible journey. Peace to you and Jackson.

Kathie R said...

Thanks Guys for the comments, and the suggestions about saving the blog.

@Amy - yes, I am on Facebook. If you search for my name you will get a hundred choices so here's a link that should take you to my page -!/kathleen.robinson.1612

tervnmal said...

Oh Kathie my heart is breaking for you, too. I am so glad you got to enjoy such a wonderful journey with Jackson. We never know how the dance will end. Your last sentence is one I wish more people would think about. Thank you for sharing your adventures with your big beautiful boy. Many hugs to you and Jackson.

Honey the Great Dane said...

Oh Kathie - I haven't been keeping up with blog friends lately and only just saw this. I'm so upset to hear about Jackson! You know he (& you) were always our idols - you achieved so much! But you're absolutely right - the thing that really matters is not the titles but the bond you forge with the time spent working as a team together.

We will be thinking of you & Jackson - I know it must be such a hard time for you. He is such a special boy. Honey sends him lots of slobbers.

I hope we won't lose touch -

Best wishes,
ps. I also agree about not deleting the blog - I think you will actually really cherish it later when you can look back and live each success and achievement again, and your journey with Jackson