Shasta Cove Dogs
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Jasper

BlogJasper
Our beloved Jasper, who we call the Gentle Giant,
has been diagnosed with terminal bone cancer.
His diagnosis, which came two months ago, was a shock.
complete surprise.
We had assumed his renewed limping was his arthritis,
defying the pain meds he was on.

It took us awhile to catch our breath.
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As options for Jasper's treatment are invasive, painful, and expensive,
with no guarrentee of even a modicum of success,
we decided to treat his pain as best we can
and cherish every single moment we have with him
for how ever long he has.


Jasper reminds us every day that he is living, not dying.
He smiles often, eats well, greets visitors happyily,
wags his tail vibrantly, and dances in his sleep.


Tho his frisbee chasing is quite curtailed,
he is helping us find other ways of playing,
that are not so hard on his body:
Short walks, tug of war, easy pinecone tosses,
big barking recitals, many cuddles,
and the like.

Jasper's behavior has changed in the last few months;
he has always been a gentle, loving dog
and a bit aloof, staying outisde most of each day,
entertaining himself, keeping watch on the property,
being the big black watchdog in our life.

In these last months he seeks our company,
both Todd & I and the other pups, more than he ever has,
as if he is wanting our protection and comfort now.
He snuggles with us more,
comes to us often through the day for a belly rub, ear scratches,
or just a quiet moment together.
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He has begun to play with Emma in a way they never have.
He is gentle and funny with her, she is feisty and joyful with him.
They take walks together and Emma,who  at 17 pounds, is (maybe)1 foot tall,
walks under Jasper, who at 90 pounds, stands 3 feet tall.
We watch her wagging tail tickling his tummy as they go.
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He has been particularly close to his sister, Sally,
their whole lives, and they have become closer still,
spending most of each day together now.
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It is as if Jasper is allowing us all to soak him up,
to imprint his loving into each one of us.....
in whatever time we have left.

There is sadness here, grief again.....
and joy, love, and discovery.
This is life.
sj



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There are love dogs no one knows the name of.  Give your life to be one of them. - Rumi