Greta

March 9, 2004 – September 4, 2018

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Greta and I, back in the day.

To My Darling Greta

When you must go,
my furry little friend,
I will be by your side.
I will hold you tenderly,
until the life has left your eyes

I see you wandering,
your eyes seem lost each day,
I watch you as you try to walk,
and tears fall on my face

The long goodbye is over
I held you in my arms
You closed your eyes and sighed at me
as you drifted off with God

I hear that Rainbow Bridge
Is a happy place to be
I hope you’re happy there
as you dance and wait for me

I will not forget you
Your fur and lovely eyes
I shall see you in my memories
As if you were alive.

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Scary Things

On Friday morning I got up quite early. The dogs followed me to the back door, and I let them out. In the early morning, the dogs all follow me out, do their business and then follow, me back in.

I was on my way back with Anneliese, Arnie, and Lili, and I glanced over and saw Greta walking along the top of the retaining wall toward the house. She has done this a million times in her 14 and a half years, and I expected her to reach the house for her morning treat!

It was then I heard it! YELP! My heart stopped for a second and I ran over to where she had been. She was gone! I called her, frantically, and looked under the fruit trees, and then I heard her cry again and my eyes followed the sound.

Greta had fallen off the wall, about 5 feet onto the crushed stones below! I raced down the stairs, and gently picked her up and carried her into the house. I set her down onto the floor and then asked her to walk toward me. She limped, just slightly, and walked to her little bed and crawled in.

I went over and checked her over, she seemed fine, but I was not sure. Over the next two hours, I checked her gums for color. Pink gums are healthy, white gums indicate internal bleeding. Hers were pink!

I gave her a small dose of her pain medication and then I let her rest most of the day.

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There is no doubt that her spinal problems are getting worse. I’m pretty sure she lost her balance and fell off the wall. We talked about it and Greta will need close supervision outside.

Tonight she is quiet and despite the rain showers, we have been outside (on leash) and she’s done her thing. Today gave me an all too real vision of what it will be like on the day that Greta’s spine gives out, and we have to bring her in.

I didn’t like that vision at all.

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TBT: Greta At The Dog Show

Greta was two years old when she went to a German Dog Show held in New York State. She was examined by a German Judge and found to be Excellent! She was such a good girl and she allowed me to show her, even though we had not worked too much on the form.  But she somehow knew what to go and flirted in a nice way with the judge.

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In the end, she came in second place. The winner was the sister of Greta’s eventual mate, Bernie.

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Here is Greta with her prize. She loved that thing for years. Until it completely fell apart!

Happy 14th Birthday, Greta!

Today is Darling Greta’s 14th Birthday. She is the oldest doggy I have ever had. It’s been one heck of a ride. Two beautiful litters of puppies, 5 puppies in each litter (10), the mother of our Arnie and Anneliese, and the Matron of our four dog crew.

Greta is fierce, gentle, funny, warm and bossy. She was so dark when we got her, and now her fur is nearly white, as she has aged.

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It’s funny, when I wake in the night, I always know which dachshund is Greta. Her whiteness stands out in the dark.

I know her time on earth is coming to a close, and as painful as this is for me, I am grateful, beyond words, to have had this wonderful doggy as my constant companion these last 14 years. She truly has been, such a blessing.

TBT: Baby Greta

These pictures are from the first year of Greta’s life in the USA. In many ways I was like a little kid and I dressed her up in funny costumes. Here she is in her raincoat! (She didn’t like it!)

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Her sun visor for those sunny days! This one she actually did like and allowed me not only to put it on, but she actually wore it a while!

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And the last picture is of her at about 10 months old. She had a beautiful full beard and wonderful eye brows. It was very funny, we were at a camp ground and I was walking her and a little girl came riding up on her bike, and she stopped to pat Greta. Then she smiled and looked up at me and said, “I like your dogs bangs!” Even all these years later, that makes me smile and laugh.

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My Darling Greta

My girl Greta is quite an amazing pup. I remember when we drove with Uschi to Rheden, German to pick her up at The Vom Geestmoor Kennels. When we arrived we were greeted by a whole bunch of wire-haired dackel puppies and several Mama pups. The owner met us at the gate and invited us in for coffee and cakes. As we sat enjoying our coffee, the owner left us with his wife and then came back with a squirming little bundle. My darling Greta!

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Later when we left, I feared she might be sad to leave her brothers and sisters and her Mama, but she never looked back. She was a girl on the go!

We spent several days with Uschi and Volker before flying back to the USA with Greta. Every time we went out to explore a new place we brought baby Greta with us. She was all for new experiences and meeting new people.

The Kids are back

In the airport in Frankfurt, and old woman stopped me to admire the puppy and asked her name. “Oh, her name is Greta!” I said proudly. “Oh, like the famous actress, Greta Garbo!” she exclaimed, and patted Greta again. And the nickname stuck! I often call out the door, “Miss Garbo! Paging Miss Garbo!” And Greta comes running.

Greta was always up for anything. She hiked and swam and ran so fast, one was amazed that those short little legs could move at such a fast pace. She loved to play in the snow, or run around the yard playing with her red ball. (She knew the red ball from any other color and she knew that the red ball was hers!)

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Why am I writing all of this now? Well, Greta will be 14 in a month and a half. Her eyes show signs that she probably is nearly blind. Her hearing is not good either and in a 24 hour period, Greta spends 22 of them sleeping.

It’s hard to watch your beloved companion getting old. She is still as sweet as ever, but that spunk, that “I’m up for anything” attitude that she once had is gone. The other day I took her for a ride and she actually slept on the car seat instead of standing on the armrest to look out the window. And after that when I asked if she wanted to go for a ride, she didn’t even leave her bed.

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So for now, I cuddle with her all the time, day and night, and I enjoy her as much as I can. But there is a sadness in my heart and my mind, as I know that we have started the long goodbye.

TBT: Bernie & Greta

Yesterday I had lunch with a dear friend, Barbie. We met in a sort of strange way. I was looking for a German boyfriend for Greta back in 2006. I had been calling around asking for a German registered boy, with a good rating, and low and behold, the perfect suitor lived just down the road in Concord, NH.

I remember calling Barbie the first time, and arranging a date to bring Greta down, so they could look her over. We brought Greta in and the two dogs eyed each other, and then began to play around. We knew it would be a good match. We just had to get Greta rated by a German judge before the breeding.

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After the first meeting we signed up for an NATC Show.(North American Teckel Club. A branch of the DTK the Deutscher Teckelklub)  A German Judge would come, to rate the dogs. Jack and I were a little nervous, as we drove Greta to the event. She could have cared less. Bernie already had his rating, but Barbie was there as well, with Bernie. And the breeder of Bernie was there with Bernie’s sister.

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The event was so much fun, and at the end of the day, Bernie’s sister won the Best Dog in Show and Greta came in Second. She was thrilled, as their casual prizes were stuffed toys!

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Now Bernie is gone, and Greta is in her dotage. Two of their children reside here with us, and we just adore Arnie and Anneliese. How lucky we are!

Anyway, yesterday, Barbie and I sat and talked and talked and reminisced about our two dogs and the 10 puppies that they had together. Two beautiful litters of sweet, perfect, puppies!

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Barbie now lives in another state and we don’t get to see each other. However, she was up here judging an Earth Dog Show and we were lucky enough to get together. I hope we can get together again soon!

Greta News

My dear little Greta is having continued health problems. I called the Vet again today and brought her in. She is back on antibiotics and will need to be crated at night for a while.

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It really hurts. I know she is 12 years old, and I know that doggies don’t live forever, but I just hate it when their health starts on that darn slippery slope. Then you know, it is just a matter of time.

I am hoping I can take such good care of her that she will live happily and healthfully for a few more years.

Fingers crossed!

TBT: Greta’s First Litter

December 5, 2006. Greta, pregnant with her first litter of pups. She was HUGE! A few days later on December 10, 2006, she gave birth to one boy (Arnie) and four girls (Anja, Anita, Angelicka and Anneliese).

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Here she is with her babies right after her delivery. Greta was an incredible mother to the 10 pups she gave birth to, before I retired her.

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And here she is with baby Anneliese.

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Greta Is An Old Lady Now

A while back I noticed that at night, Greta was having a problem with minor leaking incontinence. I called my Vet to ask if I could do anything. She told me about some pills to use to help strengthen her sphincter.

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I went and got a prescription from her and came home and gave Greta her first dose. A few hours later, I thought I might lose my dog.

Greta began to cry and to pace back and forth. She could not sit still, and her cries became louder and more pathetic. I tried to hold her to comfort her, but nothing I did helped. I got no sleep that night as I was too busy praying for my little dog to be okay.

In the morning, I read all I could about Proin and found out that this is really a nasty medication, that is no longer available for people (Dexatrim) and many pet owners wrote in about the ill effects on their pets.

I swear by all that is holy, I will not give Greta another one of these tablets! I got out her old seasonal (estrus) panties and a Kotex pad and I put these on her at night. I put a plastic sheet under her doggy bed, and she now lies in her bed, on my bed and everyone is happy.