He loved our student dinners
t’s always hard to say good-bye.
There are so many sayings about our pets, but the truism that they become part of your family is true. To be sure, this was the case for our dog Jake, who many of our readers will remember from previous blogs: Dean (and Jake) on Campus, Our dog Jake has separation anxiety, and A new home for Cheryl, Joanna, Jake and me.
Unfortunately, Jake passed away last month. He was diagnosed with metastatic hemangiosarcoma, a tumour that is quite rare in humans, but estimated to account for 5-7% of all tumours seen in dogs.1
Jake was a Portuguese Water Dog and lived with us since he was 7 weeks old until last month, when at age 9½, he started to suffer badly after what was likely an internal bleed. We were comforted by the kindness of Kingston veterinarian Dr. Meredith Galbraith, who at our home, assisted with euthanasia.
Jake was the most wonderful pet. True to the breed, he was a “people person”, and loved everyone he met. He especially loved medical students! Jake met over 550 of them at our student dinners, and was always “the hit of the party”. Heather-Ann Thompson helps Cheryl and I with the dinners, and whenever she would arrive, Jake would go crazy with excitement, in anticipation of meeting our students a few hours later. He would welcome every student with exuberance, and during dinner, he would go from student to student, putting his head in their laps, pretending to be friendly, but secretly looking for food.
Jake endeared himself to my daughter Joanna, her husband Jordan, my son Josh, his girlfriend Laura, my son Gabe and my mother Rita. But to be sure, he was “Cheryl’s dog”, and the love between them was profound. Much to my chagrin, Cheryl referred to Jake as “my main man”!
While still grieving Jake’s loss, but determined some day to get another Portuguese Water Dog, two weeks ago we made the not atypical “mistake” of visiting a breeder (referred to us by our Head of Radiology, Annette McCallum) with the intent of organizing another dog months down the road. Of course, you know what I’m about to say next. Yes, meet Sophie (aka Sophia), who is now 11 weeks old, and while certainly not taking Jake’s place in our hearts, is certainly keeping us busy! Sophie is wonderful, rambunctious, playful, and of course, brilliant.
We still have two student dinners left this year, and we are very excited for them to meet Sophie. No feeding the puppy though!
If you have any stories about your beloved pets, respond to the blog, or better yet, please stop by the Macklem House, my door is always open.