Thursday, July 16, 2009


June 6, 1999 – July 16, 2009

It is with a very heavy heart that I tell you all, my dear Choya passed on to the Rainbow Bridge this afternoon. He was surrounded by Cathy, me and all of his good friends at the Alta Vista Animal Hospital. All who knew Choya at the AVAH fell in love with his charm and good looks.

My buddy helped me through some extremely difficult times during the past 10 years. Our love for each other grew as each day passed which will stay with me until I see him again.

Thank you Kate and Denis of Hollymere Goldens for introducing me to my friend 10 years ago. It was a timeless journey that we both made together.

I miss him - a lot!


One of my favorite poems.

Heaven's Doggy-Door
My best friend closed his eyes last night,As his head was in my hand.The Doctors said he was in pain,and it was hard for him to stand.
The thoughts that scurried through my head,As I cradled him in my arms.Were of his younger, puppy years,And Oh...his many charms.
Today, there was no gentle nudgeWith an intense "I love you gaze",Only a heart that's filled with tearsRemembering our joy filled days.
But an Angel just appeared to me,And he said, "You should cry no more,GOD also loves our canine friends,
He's installed a 'doggy-door'!!!
Jan Cooper '95

Monday, July 6, 2009

Choya's Update July 6

Choya is still on Prednisone and 2 pain meds. He has his good days and bad days. We have an appointment on Thursday with his vet for a conusltation as to his condition. An update will be made shortly after the visit.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

My Buddy - June 11

Very little has changed with Choya. He has his good days and bad days. The past 2 days have been good ones. He is walking across the street less as he has a difficult time walking back home.

Friday, May 8, 2009

My Friend on May 8, 2009

2 or 3 times a day Choya and I walk across the road from our house. He can now only walk down the sidewalk a few houses until he does his business. We then slowly walk home, at times looking at each other, remembering the times we have had together over the years. When we get back to the front door, sometimes I have to help him up the steps and into the house. We don't take Choya to the park anymore as it is too difficult for him to get in and out of the van. He also cannot walk very far where he use to walk at the park since we started taking him there in 1999.

Choya has taken to laying in the corner of the dining room under the dining table. I guess he feels safe in that corner. At times, it is not too difficult to see the pain in his eyes as he lays down and goes to sleep.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Latest on Choya - May 2

Choya is declining.

He was due to have an acupuncture treatment next Thursday (every 3 weeks) but as of this past Tuesday, he started having trouble getting up and walking any long distance. He went for acupuncture 2 days ago (Thursday) but it seems that there were no positive results.

We went to the park as usual this morning and Choya was walked on leash for about 15 minutes. On our way back to the parking lot he started to stop and sit. He remained sitting for about 2 minutes each time and at one point when he was walking his rear end went down and he could not move. This happened twice and I thought I was going to have to carry him to the van. But he walked on with great difficulty (and it appeared he was in pain) and once at the van he stopped, looked up at me and put his front 2 paws up (I did not ask him to do it) while I lifted him up by the rear.

I took him for a short walk this afternoon, about 4 houses down from ours. It appeared that was as much as he could do.

It is heartbreaking to seem him in this condition. Choya is very stoic and he will not let on that he is in pain when he walks or tries to get up from a laying position.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Latest on Choya - April 26

It's been a while since I last posted an update on Choya. He has gone for about 4 more acupunture treatments since March 31. After each treatment he regained some, but not all of his energy. He was going up and down the stairs as if he never had a problem in the first place. We decided to have him treated every 3 weeks instead of every 2 weeks. It has been about 10 days since his last one and he has started to go down hill.

He tried going up the stairs last night, got about 3/4 the way up, lost his footing and started sliding backwards down the stairs. I was standing behind him at the time and stopped him. It was very sad to see him going back to the way he was 2 months ago.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Update on Choya - March 31

Choya has been improving dramatically. It’s wonderful!

He’s had his 3rd acupuncture session and has been improving day by day. He has now started going up and down the stairs to the second floor. He has gone down to the basement a few times to visit me in my office. At the park, he now walks a little faster, trotting at times. It’s great to see his smiles.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Latest on Choya - March 19

Choya had his second session of acupuncture today. We have never seen him smile so much as we did today.

I visited a friend of mine a couple of days ago and while visiting I saw Choya standing at the bottom of the carpeted stairs leading to the second floor. He walked away and came back, looking up. He did this 3 times.

Just before we left, I had my friend go upstairs and call Choya. I have never seen him move so fast as he ran up the stairs to the second floor. He was walked slowly down the stairs to the main floor. It was amazing!!

We are getting a carpet estimate for our oak stairs.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Update 0n Choya - March 15

Choya’s vet made a referral to a vet/acupuncturist and on Thursday, we took Choya to see him for a one-hour consultation and treatment.

The vet inserted a number of needles into Choya from his head to his tail on either side of his spine and they remained inserted for 20 minutes.

We started to notice a change in Choya around 8 PM. He became more active and when he was let outside with the other “kids”, he raced them to the back fence. He had not run that fast for a couple of months.

When he returned inside, he looked longingly at the stairs and went up two steps. He started to go up the next step, but changed his mind and came back down to the hallway.

Choya goes back for another treatment next week. It was wonderful to see him a little more like himself.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Update on Choya - March 03

The old boy is doing the best he can.

He now receives Prednisone every other day and we can unfortunately tell the difference when he doesn’t get it. He is still on the Tramadol every 12 hours. Over the next week we will arrange to try acupuncture. Apparently this can be a hit or miss venture but it certainly is worth a try as it is one of the least invasive treatments recommended. Choya is in good spirits with a willing heart and a healthy appetite. Choya enjoys a short, slow walk at Conroy Park most days, weather and temperature permitting. The down side of this is that Choya must be lifted into the van as he is unable to jump or step up into the van or even put his front paws up to help. It was quite cute this morning to find one of our other Goldens sleeping with Choya in the living room on a cozy makeshift bed we’d organized for Choya. Sometimes the other Goldens will remain behind downstairs in the evening to keep Choya company for a bit after we have retired for the night. We were up at 3 am to let Choya outside. A few hours later at 6 am our daily routine started once again. The old boy needs to go out to relieve himself about every 3 to 4 hours, sometimes he can go a bit longer to 4 or 5 hours. In addition to his daily rations of J/D we feed Choya extra organic apples, cooked green beans and squash to help offset the increased appetite from the Prednisone. Sometimes we also give Choya his favorite as a treat which is simply a slice of bread. We weigh Choya every week because in the beginning of all of this he started losing weight. His weight now is stable. The vet gave us guidelines of what to look for to monitor Choya for pain and so far he’s doing pretty good overall. We can see some discomfort but his spirit has not thrown in the towel and there is no indication he’s had enough of it all.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Update on Choya - February 23

Choya is now on Prednisone every second day. He seems to have lost some energy over the past few days, but he still has his smile. As he is living on the main floor now, he seems to be very lonesome. We try to spend as much time with him as we can, but he is still lonely. He has now taken to sleeping at in the hallway at the bottom of the stairs as he longs to be with us all when we are upstairs.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Update on Choya - February 17

Choya went for a longer walk at the park this aftenoon. About 25 minutes. He seems to have improved a little more.

Last night he attempted to climb the stairs. He went up 2 steps, faltered and slid down a bit. He seemed very determined in giving it a try. Three weeks ago he would not have attempted this "big step". It is quite apparent that he is not giving up!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Update on Choya

Yesterday, Choya seemed to be doing well. He was in good spirits and had a little more energy than he has had in the past 3-4 days. But today, he seemed to have a set back. I took him for a walk at the park and he faltered 4-5 times within 10 minutes. He also had less energy, than he had yesterday.

It is very hard for us to see him this way.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Update on Choya

Choya started his new regime of taking Prednisone starting on Sunday morning. At this time there appears to be very little change. He is still having difficulty getting up from a lying down position.

We still take Choya to the dog park for small strolls as he cannot do the long walks anymore. He has to be lifted out of and into the van. He still loves the park since he has been going there every day since he was 5 months old.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Choya is not Well

Choya was enjoying his retirement at home up until a few weeks ago.

Choya started to have difficulty going up and down the stairs and is now confined to the main floor. About a week ago, he started having difficulty getting up from a lying or sitting down position (He could not lift his hind end). Sometimes he would be standing and his hind end would drop to the ground. He also cannot not jump up into the van.

He has gone through extensive testing; X-rays, Ultrasound, blood tests, etc. and all the tests were negative. He is now getting painkillers and will be starting a regime of Prednisone for 2 weeks starting on Sunday.

For the time being, he is resting comfortably in his living room den.

Thank You for Visting Choya’s Den

Choya, thank you for the timeless journey we took together and the many memories. Until we meet again my friend.

In October 2005 at the age of 6, Choya was trained and certified as a service dog for Peter. Choya retired in December 2008 and he passed the leash to Kiche to become Peter’s new service dog.

Choya became ill in February 2009 and in July after a heroic battle with his illness, he passed on to the Rainbow Bridge. Choya will be greatly missed by Peter and by the many who knew him.