Monday, June 30, 2014
One of the special things that Koda and my husband shared were their popcorn eating times. Hubby would make a bag of microwave popcorn, put it in a bowl and go over to where he sat and Koda would follow rapidly behind him, sitting, waiting for the nibble thrown to him. I wrote about his determination in catching the popcorn before. At his best, he was 99.99% accurate in catching the popcorn thrown to him. He had excellent eye-mouth coordination.
Then he started losing his vision and hubby tried to accommodate for it and at times he was 95%. Hubby always felt bad the times he missed it and Koda would scramble around looking for the popcorn (he always found it, corgis are food driven, they will do whatever they can to get that food).
Then he went blind and he was missing 100% of the popcorn thrown to him. It was sad to see that and for him to search around until he found it.
But the ever resourceful man that my husband is, he found a way to let Koda have success in finding the popcorn and still enjoy that treat with him.
He would put popcorn in a plastic container as illustrated above (not the best picture, but Koda kept moving with eating as I was trying to snap pictures). Hubby would drop the popcorn in there, making a sound that Koda got used to listening to and he would then eat the popcorn. He caught on pretty darn quick to it and they still could share a favorite treat together.
We're doing a lot of accommodating these days. I think finally this week Koda completely lost his vision. He bumps into walls. He kind of knows where he is, sometimes get a bit confused and totally disoriented. Tentative at times, confident at other times.
He's not the pup that used to wait at the front door when he heard hubby come home and then run to the back door barking with excitement that his buddy was home.
He barks at the other dogs he hears in the neighborhood and the cats, but he doesn't go to the back door to try to find them.
He would bark at motorcycles or buses or trucks when we took him for car rides, now he rarely does unless he can hear their engines.
We continue to accommodate. Walk him still because he does enjoy it though he sometimes gets confused and will just stop and not want to move on until coaxed. We keep where we walk him to one central place he's familiar with and he's doing better with the walking. We keep a pretty close eye on him as we can.
We always crated him when we would go places (never longer than 5-6 hours) and now am grateful that he got used to being crated since right now it is safer for him to be contained than roaming free in the house.
It got me thinking. I do miss that little spunky dog we had. But he is aging, he had this disability happen to him. Just like can happen to anyone in their life. An auto accident that leaves someone paralyzed, a cancer diagnosis, dementia that robs a family member of their memory, etc.
And we accommodate.
Carol accommodated her husband's Alzheimer's diagnosis and had to make some hard decisions about hospice and end of life issues and said goodbye to her husband at a memorial service this past Saturday.
Paula is accommodating her husband's failing health, also on hospice, trying to respect his wishes and keep him comfortable.
Its part of the cycle of life. As much as we don't like to do it, we accommodate the best we can.
One day we will have to make that hard decision about Koda.
One day I might have to make that decision about hubby, or hubby for me.
One day we might have to accommodate and put aside what we knew before and accept our new "normal" whether we might like it or not.
But we'll do the best we can with what we have to work with.
And that's where we are at with Koda.
As hard as it is.
We will accommodate........