It’s Week 29 of professional pet photography Project 52 blog circle and our theme for this week is “noses.” When I started thinking of what to do for this week, I had no idea how I would end up with this post. Our senior dog, Stella, had been to the vet in June for her annual checkup and got a good report, which was fantastic considering her age. We don’t really know her age, but she’s been part of our family for the last 12-1/2 years. When we adopted her from the rescue they said she was 5-7 years old. We thought she could be a little younger, but either way, she’s at a minimum 15 and at a maximum possibly 19. However, last Friday night she started having very labored breathing and couldn’t seem to get up. So, we took her to the emergency vet to get checked out.

While they couldn’t find anything that was immediately causing the breathing, they did both an ultrasound and x-rays and found that her lymph nodes were enlarged and that her liver was enlarged and pushing on her spleen. She was stable and doing better than when we took her in, so we took her home where we knew she would be more comfortable. We’d consult with our vet on Monday on how to proceed.

After deciding that we’d just monitor her for a bit to see if she improved or had any other issues, she did okay for a day or two while definitely not her normal self. Wednesday night I took her out for a walk, we walked a little way and she sat down. After getting her up and standing, we slowly walked back to the house. Later on, she started panting pretty much non-stop. Yesterday morning, she was laying in the living room with her head resting on her bed when I first checked on her. The next time I checked on her she was laying a little bit away from her bed on the floor (one of the places she frequently liked to lay.) While I was sitting there talking to her, she scooted her but across the floor backing up against a dog bed underneath a chair. That’s where she would lay the rest of the day. While she didn’t eat anything, she did drink water throughout the day. She also made no real effort to get up. I don’t think she could. She lay there panting throughout the day. A constant, harsh panting.

Around 5:00 we got Stella ready to go to the vet to see if there was anything we could do for her, but knowing in the back of our mind’s that she probably wasn’t going to be going home with us. And she didn’t.

This picture of Stella is from 2016. She was never really a fan of having her picture taken, so I mostly didn’t bother her with it. Although, I did take quite a few pictures of her over the years, certainly not as many as Mr. Bojangles. 

As you can tell from this picture, Stella was a hound, a dog with a nose for scent…and trouble. Stella loved going for a walk on garbage night when she could get out and sniff everyone’s trash. She also loved sniffing out stinky spots in the grass to roll around in.  Knowing that Stella probably wouldn’t be coming home with us from our visit to the vet I decided to take a couple of pictures of her. This is one of them, where I focused on her famous nose. Thanks for 12-1/2 years of companionship and love, Stella. We will miss you.

Next up in the blog circle is Linda Perdue of VPShoots Photography serving the Tampa Bay, Florida area, after you visit her head around the rest of the blog circle until you end up back here. 

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