Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Back Home, sort of

Yes it's been quiet here, largely because I've been in Australia for the last 6 weeks teaching and traveling. I taught 3 courses at Rundell and Rundell in Kyneton just north of Melbourne about an hour. Everything went well and then I was joined by the lovely Stephanie H. for a couple of weeks of travel, including an amazing trip to the Great Barrier Reef.

Coming back from vacation is always a bit jarring but this time is even more so because of the passing of our sweet pup Lily. She died unexpectedly while we were away, and while we did our best to make the best of our time in Australia, I'm finding myself struggling now that I'm back home. Solitary shop life suits my temperament, but I've never truly been alone out there, she was my constant companion for the last 11 years and it seems that there is hardly a move that I make that doesn't instinctively include reaching for her, spotting her out of the corner of my eye or calling for her to join me. Many of you know this feeling and I know better days will come, but the transition from being someone with a great dog, to someone with great memories takes time.

I will be posting my teaching schedule for the next year soon, it's sparse, as I am focusing more on building chairs, but there are a few openings.

Below is a little information about the condition that resulted in Lily's death, I hope that posting it might be helpful to others whose animals are at similar risk.

Lily was staying with a local Vet that also boards dogs. She had a check up before the stay and even though she was 12, she was in excellent health. On her 8th day there, she vomited and collapsed while being walked, she died quickly. The vet said that she thought it was from a twisted bowel, which I'd never heard about. I new about bloat in goats and the dangers it poses, but not in dogs. Apparently it's a common killer in dogs and little can be done once it starts. Basically, for unknown reasons, the stomach flips, cutting off circulation to the intestine which also impairs blood flow to the heart, resulting in cardiac arrest. There are some factors that make dogs more susceptible. Dogs with large chests and narrow waists, like Lil, as well as dogs prone to anxiety, Lil too, are more likely to have the problem. Changes in routine, such as boarding or having a new dog in the house can also stress dogs as well, leaving them susceptible to the condition. There are early signs of the problem and steps that you can take to help prevent it if you think your animal is at risk. If you want to know more about this condition just google "Dog Twisted Intestine" and you will have reading for days.


I'm a OK guy said...


I'm so sorry. It will happen to most of us that love critters at some time in our lives. It's a huge hole to fill. I'll give Sam the Wonder Dog and Sweet Maggie Dog an extra hug and treat tonight.

Take care,


Dave said...


You have my condolences as well. It always hurts to lose someone you love, no matter how many legs they have.


Peter Galbert said...

Thanks Ken and Dave,
I've been here before, but never so out of the blue. Your comments mean a great deal to me,
now hug those dogs!!!

Angostura Bitters said...

Hi Peter, I'm so sorry for your loss, she seems like such a sweet pup in the photo and your description. a true noble canine. a shop companion. I hope you find some peace in due time.

adam of oakland, ca

Anonymous said...

Really sorry to hear about your sweet pup. We lost a cat and the dog unexpectedly in May so I know the missing that you speak of well. Strangely, it makes the new critters that are now in our lives all the more precious. But alas, none can really replace those who have gone.


Anonymous said...

So sorry, especially the suddenness of her passing. I hope you find solace in her memory and the pictures you find reminding you of how she brought joy into your life.

nbreidinger said...

I'm sorry for your loss, Pete. I still get choked up sometimes when thinking of my late pup, Jaz after two years without her. It does get easier, but never truly goes away.

I'm sorry to hear about her condition. We had friends that lost their german shepherd who was not even 2 years old to this condition. We've also been told to avoid strenuous activity soon after eating to help avoid this condition.

Take care.

Unknown said...

Sorry to hear of your loss too. We lost our dog of 17 years last June, while she wasn't a "shop dog" I understand your loss. But as others have written, be thankful of your time together and rejoice in her memory.

Paul Cottingham said...

Sorry for your loss. I lost my two cats Ike and Maggie a year or so ago after almost twenty years together. They got me through a great deal, including a divorce. When i met my wife, she said "i don't like cats" and i told her they were not negotiable.
She cried as hard as me on their passing.
Those two were very doglike, loyal and attentive. I truly feel for you.

jade said...

It was after his death she comes to know that Simon loved her and not her sister. Notes

Tee, Atlanta, GA said...

Peter, I am so sorry for you loss. Our pets certainly leave paw prints on our hearts, forever. It will get easier.

Peter Galbert said...

thanks for your comments, it's good to hear from you. So many transitions have kept me from attending to my blog and I realize that I miss hearing from my old friends like you!