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In summer I used to pack the two small dogs and the cat and off to the chalet for a few weeks. That summer was no different. The only difference was, the very next day of arrival, one of my gardeners called me up, barely able to speak, to tell me that Daisy went to sleep the night before, but never woke up that morning. I was totally shocked. Any signs of why she died? Any foam at the mouth? Any bite marks? No, nothing. And she looks as though she’s asleep. Daisy was always greatly overweight, so I guess her heart just gave out. It was quit a shock, and I was very upset.
Ten days later they called me again to say that Cleo was not eating properly. I called one of my neighbors to go have a look. She did but said the dog looked a bit haggard. So I called Suzie who has far more experience with animals. When she saw her she called me up immediately. She said she was very poorly, that she is calling the vet and will have him look her over the next day. So early the next day I drove back to Cairo, met the vet who said she was very poorly indeed, gave her a full bottle of glucose, but recommended hospitalization. Next morning I took her to the vet, he drew blood and sent it to be analyzed and I took off going back to the coast to bring my Mom and the rest of the entourage back. That same day after reaching the coast I called the vet and he told me that Cleo did not make it. I lost two of my babies within two weeks. It was a horrible summer.
My big dogs were usually quite healthy, but with advanced age they started suffering some problems. The following summer Petunia had to undergo emergency surgery to remove a highly infected uterus. With a lot of nursing, she pulled through in a couple of weeks. Rosy underwent the same surgery last year, but she did not make it. I now have a growing dog cemetery just next to my garden. I still have three of my original six dogs, including my beloved Caesar, who is just as dear to me today as the day he caught my heart in his little paw 11 years ago.
Just this summer one evening I heard a little kitten crying in the garden, fearing for her as the big dogs were liable to kill her by catching her in their jaws and playing with her. I searched but couldn’t find her. Next morning I had the dogs locked in their pen, took the two gardeners and gave a thorough search. Finally a little squeak from on top of the bar building. I had them climbing up. They saw her but she gave them the run around for a few minutes before they cornered her, but instead of getting caught she jumped off the roof and into a bush, from which we caught her. I took her into the house, and that is how Lizzy came to live with us. A striped light and dark grey, she is one beautiful Mau. Bit by bit she started getting used to the dogs and they to her. Snow, as usual, took everything in stride, but showed no particular interest. This turned out to be camouflage, for the moment Lizzy matured, she became pregnant. I honestly thought that Snowy was gay, but alas he turned into a stud, and 70 days later she gave birth to five little kittens .. in my bed! Sadly ten days later two of the kittens died. So now we have two small dogs and five cats indoors, and three large dogs in the garden.God keep them all.
An ongoing saga.

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