Thursday, July 12, 2007

Adieu, Rabin

Rabin PtC

Rabin was born on October 24th, 1994, and Jennifer carried our beautiful six-week old chocolate labrador retriever puppy into our home on December 1st. Jennifer and I were recently engaged, and living in a rental house in Peachtree City, Georgia. As far as the Traveling Roths go, I guess Rabin was one even before Jennifer was, and of course the kids were years away from even existing.

She made the 14-hour drive to Pennsylvania for Christmas that year, and met the whole family.
Rabin Christmas 1994

Andy and Rabin

Rabin Polaroid

As a puppy, she was a handful, never slowing down, destroying remote controls, telephones, baseball hats. . . and always ready to play. She loved to. . .

Rabin in Lake Peachtree

Rabin GA Park

Rabin Camping

Or just tool around Peachtree City in a golf cart
Rabin's Peachtree City Golf Cart

Eventually the kids came along. Rabin was there the days each of them came home from the hospital. They got along great.

Rabin grew out of her puppy stage by the time she was seven or so.

We moved to North Carolina, and Rabin spent a year in Pennsylvania since our rental house didn't allow pets. When she came back to us, the kids could barely remember when she did live with us. She protected us. Well, we assumed she would. She never hurt anyone, but if you didn't know her, her bark sounded very intimidating.

She barely slowed down. By the time she was 11 or so, she lost her hearing, and couldn't jump into the back of the truck anymore, but you'd hardly notice. She'd still swim all day, given the chance.
Stick Thrower

Stick Chaser

She still traveled to Pennsylvania with us
ZR Steps

And enjoyed a day in the park
Roth Women

In June we noticed something wrong with her. Although she still seemed like her old self, she had a lump in her belly. The vet tested it and determined that the lump was a stage 3 mast cell tumor, it was very aggressive, and there wasn't a lot that could be done for her.

She went on for another month or so, generally herself, but slowing down with less energy, and occasionally having trouble standing up. When she was up, she'd still want to go out and catch a frisbee. We told the kids that she was sick, and that we didn't want to suffer. The kids didn't want to hear it. Tristan would cover his ears and tell us to "stop talking," as his voice cracked and his eyes teared up.

By early this week, she's pretty much stopped eating. You could see the tumor growing almost on a daily basis. By Wednesday, we knew it was time. The histamines released by the tumor wouldn't allow her to eat, yet she was getting sick everywhere and her tumor would bleed on and off. I took her to Mebane Pet Clinic for her final visit. She didn't want to get out of the truck, so I carried her. They took her into the back, and that's the last we ever saw her.

Goodbye old friend. You've been a part of our family even before it was a family, and the kids have never known a time without you. You'll always be with us.
Traveling Roths' Shadow

Rabin's Field Day
Rabin Olias Roth
October 24, 1994 - July 11, 2007

(PS, If you're reading this before Sunday the 15th, and happen to interact with Tristan and Zoe, please don't say anything to them. They don't know yet. They're at the beach with Jennifer, and we wanted to give them a few more days to enjoy themselves before dropping this on them.)


Andy Roth said...

Rabin - you'll be missed. You lived your life like we all should - always ready for an adventure. If there is a dog heaven, I'm sure that for you it is filled with tennis balls and lots of water.

Dave - great post. When I saw all those Rabin photos go up on Zooomr, I feared this was the reason.

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