It has taken me nearly two weeks to sit down and write this post. I just haven’t been able to bring myself around to doing it. However, I owe it to Margot to make sure everyone knows just how fantastic she was. I am sitting here on a Sunday with Golden Girls playing in the background thinking about how many Sundays I spent sitting on this sofa with Margot watching Golden Girls.
Margot, the night she came to live with me
I picked Margot up on December 5th, 2014. I didn’t have dog food, I didn’t have a dog leash, and I was scared shitless that I was making a mistake. You see, a couple days earlier, when I was lonely and killing some time at work I was perusing Adopt-a-pet and I saw this little dachshund who looked like she had had a rough time. She was listed as non-adoptable, for rescue only due to some aggression she had exhibited at the shelter. I messaged Fulton County Animal Shelter and inquired about the little dog they were referring to as “Juicy.” FCAS then called Dream Dachshund Rescue and told them they had a foster home for “Juicy” if DREAM would be willing to pull her from the shelter. Things traveled fast and I found myself in the lobby of a vet’s office shocked 1) that someone trusted me enough to care for a dog 2) that I had agreed to take in a stranger dog. My gut told me what I was doing was right, but I mentally was worried. About 10 minutes after I had been waiting in the lobby, in strutted Vikki from DREAM (who is pretty much the patron saint of homeless dachshunds in GA). In strutted “Juicy” and I will never every forget Vikki asking me to please select “A more appropriate name for the dog,” I suggested Margot, and it seemed to fit. Margot didn’t pay any attention to me at first because she was too busy dancing for treats for Vikki. She got some shots, got looked over, and then we made our way home. She seemed thrilled that I had brought a bed for her to sit in in the car. We then drove to my parent’s house so I could pickup a dog crate, and some dog food. By the time I picked Margot up it was too late for me to go to the pet store. Once I got Margot home, I gave her a bath. She looked up at me in the bath tub with her big brown eyes and she seemed to be saying “Thank you for being nice to me.” My heart absolutely melted, along with the chances that Margot was actually a “foster” dog and that I could give her up. Poor girl had some digestion issues the first night, and we spent the majority of the night awake, I finally decided it would be best for us to go downstairs and Margot curled up on my lap on the sofa. The very next day, I took Margot to the local pet store desperate for some food that would calm her tummy. They recommended a super sensitive food, fitted her for a harness, and then gave me instructions to feed her 1 tbs of food every hour. Each feeding, Margot began to emerge from her shell more and more. When she really started feeling better she would sprint to the kitchen waiting to be fed.
For the next 2.5 years (and quite frankly if you ask me it feels about 20 years too short) Margot was my best friend. We did everything together. I mean everything. I would get food from the drive-thru so she could ride in the car, I would go to a pharmacy that was a bit out of the way so I could take her in the car. Almost every weekend Margot got to go to her beloved “Moo-Moo’s” house where she liked to hang out with my parent’s dogs and lay on their carpet. Although our time was short Margot got to go to DREAM’s annual Howl-o-weenie where her Madonna costume landed her as a finalist in their costume contest, she got to go to Chattanooga to visit my grandfathers, she got to go to downtown Roswell to eat, she frequently got to go to Avalon to shop and spend time with me and my BF while we ate, she got to go shopping for Lilly Pulitzer at the Belk at Phipps, to see Santa, dachshund meetups, she was the unofficial greeter in the Oakland Cemetery Visitor’s Center for a while until she was busted by a City of ATL employee and her unofficial position was terminated. I mean FFS when my “sack of potatoes” didn’t seem to have as much spring in her step I even bought her a dog stroller and pushed her around (which she freaking loved). I am so so happy I was able to do SO SO much with Margot, but I literally have found myself a bit lost because my life literally revolved around Margot. She was kind and patient. All of the neighborhood kids LOVED her. They would come over and sit in my driveway and she would climb on their laps and love on them. Her nickname (well one of many) was “Momma boogers” because even though her motherhood days were behind her, she never ever stopped being nurturing. She used to “correct” the cats when they would play too rowdy and would literally go run between two cats playing rough, and she even saved Coco the cat’s life when he had a urinary blockage by literally running me to where he was sick and hiding. She hated if characters on TV were upset, and she hated if I was upset. It sounds ridiculous, but when I talked she really listened. And when she thought I was being goofy and she disapproved/was embarrassed she let me know with her side eye. She was the queen of the side eye, and my BF called it her “Can you fucking not?” face”
She allowed me to open up my home to four other DREAM foster dogs. She really seemed to enjoy having a canine companion. Major, Anton. Charo, and Arrow all got to share a home, and be friends with Margot. I know there is probably some asshole out there reading this who is rolling their eyes and saying “It was just a dog” but to see she was SO much more. She was my best friend, and I even joked she was my dog soulmate.
Anyways, so I am sure some of y’all are asking yourselves what happened. Margot (contrary to her own personal opinion of herself) was no spring chicken. I have no idea how old she actually was. On a high end she could have been 14-15, on a low end she could have been 9-10. Sadly the years of being bred took their toll on her little body. She had digestive issues since the day I brought her home, and I was relieved when she was diagnosed with chronic pancreatitis, because I thought we finally had an answer. In the last 10 days of Margot life her digestive issues got bad, so I took her to the vet. She seemed to make a full recovery we were baffled because on that day her pancreatic enzymes were normal so we figured she had just eaten something she should not have (homegirl ate like a dumpster), and then boom Wednesday, June 7th Margot’s tummy troubles returned. We put her on a bland diet and she seemed to be getting better. Friday June 9th I took her to the vet again and because she was being a ham we didn’t really think something was gravely wrong with her. She got some anti-nausea medication, some antibiotics and seemed to be on the road to recovery. Friday night, my BF and I went to dinner, and when we got home Margot was confused and struggling to stand. We took her to the emergency vet, where once again they didn’t think she was gravely ill. They gave her some fluids, some meds, were confident it was pancreatitis and sent her home. Saturday Margot wasn’t herself and just slept all day. We figured it was from the narcotic that the vet gave her. I couldn’t get her to drink water on Saturday partially because the narcotic had her so woozy. I panicked a little bit, and told my BF I thought Margot was dying. We rushed her again to the same emergency vet (if you live in North ATL message me and I will be more than happy to give you the name of this vet so you know where NOT to take your dog) and once again those fuckers lead us to believe nothing was seriously wrong with Margot. I agreed to pay them to keep her overnight, and the bastards even lead me to believe she was getting better the next day. Sunday, June 11th I was so excited to go pick Margot up from the emergency vet because it was my birthday, and getting Margot back healthy was going to be the best gift for me. When I picked Margot up from the emergency vet she didn’t acknowledge me AT ALL. I was devastated, and knew her condition had not improved. We laid Margot down in her bed upon arriving home, and we watched The Secret Life of Pets with her. I then carried her bed to my bed, and she spent (unknown to us) her final night in my bed. The next Morning we got up at the crack of dawn and arrived at OUR vet when they opened. They rushed us into a room, did additional testing, and found a mass in Margot’s intestines. Her bloodwork had indicated that she had an infection, but that even though her body was full of antibiotics that her little body was not fighting her infection, but the mass also appeared to be cancerous. My vet gave me the option of either doing exploratory surgery that he was NOT confident would be successful. She had a grade III heart murmur so putting her under anesthesia without her being 100% meant she probably would not have come out of anesthesia. I had looked all weekend for ANY sign that she was fighting, and there were none. I asked what her quality of life would be like if I did the surgery and my vet was brutally honest with me, and told me deep down he had regretted even giving me the option to do surgery because if it was his personal dog he would humanely euthanize her. Margot had the glassed over stare into nothing, and was struggling to breath. I made the hardest decision I have EVER made and I knew it was time to let her go, and end her suffering. Had my heart told me she would have recovered, I would have paid for the surgery. I just knew she didn’t have it in her, and that it was selfish to try to ask her to get better for me instead of ending her pain. I never understood how someone could get to where they had to euthanize their beloved pet until this happened. The thing I wanted most was for her to not suffer anymore. She passed away peacefully surrounded by me, my BF, our vet that she seemed to fancy, and her beloved Moo-moo. I have had a roller coaster of emotions, I am incredibly angry that the emergency vet was so damn shitty at her job, and failed to notice Margot was gravely ill. I am thankful to have had Margot in my life, and I am so sad and lost without her. Bless his heart, my foster dog Arrow is incredibly old and was horribly neglected/abused so he doesn’t fully feel comfortable around people. He is happiest being left alone so I am so sad to have lost my little buddy.
I am waiting with baited breath for DREAM to call me with another dog in need. I am not looking to replace Margot, let me make it perfectly clear, there is NO replacing Margot. However, I am blessed to have the means necessary to care for a doggo in need, and I very much enjoy their company. Plus I know Margot would want me to help another dog. I will leave you with this.