God got a Dog Today

Before & After Uncategorized
We love you, Professor Klunkers Monteque Knox!

We love you, Professor Klunkers Monteque Knox!

After 9 months of physical therapy, acupuncture, hydrotherapy, laser therapy, tests and medication, the progress of degenerative myelopathy (a progressive disease of the spinal cord – basically the “ALS” for doggies) has run its course. Today, we said goodbye to our beloved, furry son, Klunkers. We know many of you have loved him from near and afar –  and we thank you for your wonderful comments and sentiments over the years.

Matt and I couldn’t possibly fully describe the love we’ve shared with Klunkers…but here is just a glimpse:

God got a Dog Today

God got a dog today,
a most precious gift,
someone he can cuddle with,
talk to and play with.

He was as star struck as we were,
When he first saw him at the Gate,
And said, “Wow! Even I am impressed
with myself, I must say.”

He gazed amazed at his soft, fluffy fur and sparkly eyes,
And at his big bean nose, we’ve kissed many millions of times.

And his huggable body, legs built for speed and agility,
Now, strong again, he can now run again,
Here, he has exceptional ability.

No, it’s no surprise He chose our beloved son,
He was perfect in every way,
except, perhaps, for one.

You see, our fur baby’s life started out with neglect and abuse,
at the hands of someone evil,
The word devilish, I’ll choose.

Then, dumped out on the streets during the storms of ’05,
He had to fend for his life,
Literally fight to stay alive.

As fate would have it, God mercifully intervened,
Our boy was plucked from abandonment,
But, into a county kill-shelter…rather, a doggie slot machine.

Lady Luck was with our boy, for he was rescued just in time,
Two weeks in the hospital,
Pneumonia was now trying to take his life.

But, he fought, and with the help of so many unnamed,
Klunkers survived once again,
Like the LA Kings’ second-time Stanley Cup reign!

And that’s when it happened,
there was no doubt in its fate,
His slightly blurred picture appeared on Petfinder that day.

Instantly, we knew he was ours,
And in one week he was,
And would be for 9 years and 10 precious months.

The most amazing four-legged son,
So cute and yet serious,
Perfect in every way, yes, except for one.

He would snap, growl and bite,
Sometimes us, strangers or those,
Who’d get way too close, too fast or disrespect his animal side.

But, he was protecting from fear,
We knew it wasn’t his fault,
With patience and love, he trusted us more every year.

But what he brought unencumbered was his ability to give,
So much joy, so much love,
How to be, how to live.

And that’s why it isn’t surprising one bit,
That God wanted our boy,
They’re quite undoubtedly the perfect fit.

For those of us who believe we’re made in the image of Him,
We still struggle all our lives,
To find the peace from within.

Not so, when it comes to life of a dog,
He comes forgiving and loving,
unconditionally…like God.

Spelled backwards or forwards they’re really the same,
Maybe that’s why He sent dogs down from heaven,
To teach us how to behave.

And that’s what we saw, in our precious baby boy,
God’s gift of perfect love,
forgiveness and joy.

Yes, God got a dog today,
Our Klunkers Wheaten-Shar Pei,
But, I’d like to make a correction,
In this poem’s title, please, if I may.

God, Klunkers is yours,
But only to foster and then,
When we arrive at the Gates,
He promised he’d be there to greet us again.

We’ll all be together forever,
With every pup that we’ve raised,
And celebrate the fact,
That God got a dog today.

——————————-

We’d love to thank and fully recommend the following people who helped keep Klunkers as healthy as possible for as long as possible, as well as helping advise us on doing what’s best for him:

Dr. Jodi Matsuoka, DVM and all the staff – VCA Coast Animal Hospital

Dr. Heather Oxford, DVM, MPH, CVA, CCRT – Pet Acupuncturist

Earlene Verona Winn – Tailwaggers Massage & Hydrotherapy

Dr. Amy Stillwell-Graiff, DVM – Choice Veterinary Care, In-Home Pet Euthanasia Services

Your care, compassion and dedication will always mean the world to us.

Klunkers was rescued from the county shelter by Marina Baktis, Mutts & Moms. Thank you so much, Marina, for choosing us to love Klunkers all these years. He was, and always will be, a priceless gift.

And to all our family and friends: Thank you all so much for respecting and loving Klunkers the way he needed to be treated…we, and he, so appreciate it.

 In honor of Klunkers, please adopt a rescue animal…they’ll absolutely end up rescuing you.

Sunday morning snuggle

Sunday morning snuggle…

a man and his dog copy

a man and his dog

Klunkers THE king!

Klunkers THE king!

a girl and her dog

a girl and her dog

Klunkers, the star character in the children's book, "Big Bug Lunch!".

Klunkers, the star character, in the children’s book, “Big Bug Lunch!”.

Matt, Klunkers and Dr. Oxford

Matt, Klunkers and Dr. Oxford starting the long road of physical therapy, acupuncture and laser therapy.

Matt, Klunkers, and Earlene. Klunkers LOVED his water therapy sessions...and Earlene!

Matt, Klunkers, and Earlene. Klunkers LOVED his water therapy sessions…and Earlene!

Klunkers on his wagon walk

Klunkers on one of his wagon walks…he loved them.

Klunkers basking in the sun

Klunkers basking in the sun.

Klunkers ready for winter

Klunkers ready for winter.

Goodbye sweet boy…be good to God…only good reports…until we see you again.
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Written By Skaie Knox

Decor/Design/Repurposing nerd and DIYer, brand ambassador, freelance writer, and the editor-in-chief for HomeJelly. Skaie is also a signed and published singer/songwriter (Fervor Records/ASCAP) and kid's book author (Big Bug Lunch!). She was voted "Class Clown", and is a rescue dogs crusader.

  • Paula

    Dear Skaie,

    I googled “degenerative myelopathy” and found your poem and Klunker’s story. I can’t even begin to tell you how sorry I am for your loss. I, too, have a rescued, super fluffy furbaby (who, by the way, looks very much like a blonde version of Klunkers…was he a Tibetan terrier?). My Simon has DM and I am desperately trying to halt the disease’s progression. Anyway, I just want you to know your poem and the photos of Klunkers touched me, and I hope the cure for DM is found soon!

    • http://www.about.me/skaieknox Skaie Knox

      Hi Paula. Thank you so much for you reply. Klunkers, according to our vet, was a Wheaten Terrier/Shar Pei mix (boy, it’s still hard to use the past verb “was”).

      I’m so sorry to hear that your Simon has DM…but, good news! There are ways to slow the progression. Additionally, and as my brother-in-law also put it so poignantly, there are ways to extend his COMFORT. Klunkers showed signs back in September 2014. His left rear paw started dragging on walks. At first, we thought it was possibly arthritis (I’m guessing your vet may have thought the same, too). We immediately started physical, laser, and massage therapy. Additionally, we had this therapist do acupuncture on him every 6 weeks.

      Just a note: be sure that anyone who does acupuncture and/or laser therapy, is a DVM – this is VERY important…even if you have someone saying they’re a veterinarian tech, or animal massage therapist, to administer laser therapy or acupuncture, they must be a doctor.

      By November, she started thinking we may want to get a DNA test for DM, but, we didn’t actually get the test until end of February. He had both markers.

      For 9 months, I did physical therapy on Klunkers 3-5 times a day…EVERY day. In the end, he was up to about 8 vitamins/pain/anti-inflammatory pills in the morning and 6 of this cocktail at night. It was hard, but a labor of LOVE. We also did water therapy and he totally loved that! If anything, it gave him his life back for an hour where he was able to move all his legs freely.

      You should also look into getting Simon fitted for a cart (if you haven’t already done so). I would absolutely recommend this. In fact, we still have Klunkers’ cart and were going to list it on craigslist and the “Walkin Wheels” site. It’s a size medium. We also have two sets of extenders, wheels and struts. I think they start (new) at $399, which isn’t too bad, but we’d sell you ours (with extra sets) for $200 (if you’re interested). You can email me here: [email protected] for more specific size measurements, if you’re interested.

      Finally, I think one of the two MOST helpful pieces of equipment we had for Klunkers was, (1.) the “Help ’em Up Harness”. It fits both his front and back legs and you can literally pick him up like a suitcase. Near the end, we had Klunkers wear it most of the time, ’cause he needed help doing everything; and (2.) a wagon for “wagon walks”. Once Klunkers couldn’t walk, we thought that he’d still love to get out into the neighborhood and smell and have neighbors visit and pet him…he LOOOOVED it! It made his day!

      So, I guess what I’m getting at is…if you can make a list of ways you can help Simon live out the rest of his time comfortably, with minimal pain and with happiness and dignity, you AND he will always know that you provided him with the best life he could have lived. My heart aches for you and I’m sending armloads of hugs to you. Someone said, “Living with a dog with DM is like a long goodbye.” Yeah…it totally sucks.

      Now that three months have passed, I’m still aching and crying for our baby-bear. I will always have a piece of my heart in heaven. However, my brother-in-law, Johnnie gave me such a precious gift when he said Klunkers looked so happy and comfortable. Comfortable. Though he could have lived another 2-3 years (I’m SO angry about that!), he was able to leave this physical world SO happy, SO loved, and SO cared for.

      I hope this helps…feel free to email me with any additional questions, support or if you’re interested in learning more about the cart. Also, I can give you the number of our holistic vet who can offer you some advice as to his treatment as well. We are so happy with her and how she guided us through the treatment of this disease.

      Hugs to you and your family and lots of virtual kisses and doggie biscuits for Simon!

  • Carolyn Ferro

    Dear Skaie
    Matt sent me the link to your beautiful memorial of Klunkers. He was one special dog and I know the total love you had for him, and him for you.
    I remember meeting him when I visited you guys oh, so long ago. I remember how special he was, despite all he suffered before he found his true loving family.

    Your dedication to make his life all it could be, to spare nothing to ease the suffering from his disease lives as a testament to who you and Matt are as human beings.

    Your poem was beautiful. It took me quite awhile to get through it as I had to stop and wipe the tears from my eyes several times.

    I share in your loss today as I remember Klunkers and the special dog he was.

    Much love
    Carolyn Ferro

    I

    • http://www.about.me/skaieknox Skaie Knox

      Thank you so much for your thoughtful reply. It’s been almost five months (I can’t believe it’s been that long!) and I miss my baby-bear every day. He truly was my son, as I will never know a human one. Our new puppy is very sweet and we are falling more and more in love with him. Still, Klunkers will always be THAT special one. He just jump right into our hearts from the second we laid eyes on him. He’s still there and we just can’t wait to see him again. God is truly lucky. Thanks again, Carolyn – you are one special lady and such an inspiration. I hope you are well and am sending hugs to you and your family. Thanks again for the kind words.

  • http://Homejelly Theresa

    Dear Skaie,

    I was drawn to the homejelly website tonight and to your beautiful tribute to Klunkers. We’ve never met but I feel compelled to offer my sympathy to you.
    God knew when choosing parents for Klunkers that He could count on your love and compassion to provide the very best care for him down here. Until you meet again, may you be comforted in knowing there are many special people up there who are enjoying your Klunkers.

    Peace and blessings,
    Theresa

    • http://www.about.me/skaieknox Skaie Knox

      Hi Theresa! Thank you so much for your very touching and gracious words. I have to say that this is the most special and beautiful comment we’ve ever received. It spoke directly to my heart and left me in a puddle of thankful tears. It never occurred to me that, while we wait patiently (like horses in their gates before the Kentucky Derby) to see our beautiful fur baby again, others are enjoying our boy. That is such a wonderful thought. You are so kind to place that vision in our minds. Your kindness was received and will stay with us long after this reply.

      Have a fantastic day and know you are blessed!

      Hugs,
      Skaie and Matt
      P.S. We were so lucky to find another fur baby and we named him “Krinkles”. He’s SO happy, loving and sweet! He’s also enjoying his new position as project foreman (currently in training), and he’s quite the ham! See this post to view his first day on the job!

      http://homejelly.wpengine.com/artificial-grass-dogs-our-best-friend/

      If you scroll down to the bottom, you’ll see a super short video showing a glimpse of his personality! Cheers!