Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Aunt Bea has gone on



Thank you to everyone who partook in Aunt Bea's Celebration of Life to help pay her medical and vet fees.It was greatly needed and appreciated.

She fought so hard, and so did I.

She started here with the cards stacked against her, after being rescued by New Moon out of a starvation situation. Her blood work showed the havoc malnutrition had on her little body.

But one of my three wonderful vets and I fought hard to help her, and I have never had such a brave little patient. Shots and drenches every day, wrapped in old sweaters for warmth, she hung on and on, always eager to eat, but unable to get up or walk. Her walking was worsened when her right front leg suffered some kind of nerve damage making her unable to put pressure on it. I was getting her up at least four times a day to move her, and pat her sides to help her rumen and the water in her lungs. I had even looked into buying a wheelchair for her.

Her treatments were nearly over after 18 days so the vet came to do a blood test on her today. We had hoped to see any kind of improvement in her Pac Cell count. Instead it was worse. We discussed an option of more injections for three weeks to see if we could stimulate the bone marrow - a treatment that has helped dogs and cats. But with the blood work in, we both felt it was time to help her over. It was a hard decision - because I had fought so hard too.

But you have to stand back and ask what you are fighting for - you, or the comfort of the animal. She had become more uncomfortable in the last few days - constant groaning - which could have meant so many other things were going wrong in her.

I held her little head, and she fell off to sleep, sweet slumber, and then she was gone. To not see her teeny little head sticking out of the hay bed tomorrow morning might just kill me. But the vet said it best - she had more attention in the last month than her whole life. I know this.

It was dark when I left the barn. I looked up to the sky but there were no stars. Just like her little blanket had kept her warm all these days at Apifera, the sky now offered her a blanket of fog to keep her warm on her journey.

Thank you to all who helped.

15 comments:

Emma said...

I know Aunt Bea received all the love in the world from you.

Thinking of you and all the others at the farm tonight...

Ellen Bateman Bulterman said...

I'm keeping you and everyone there in my prayers. My heart goes out to you. Much love and peace.

Ellen Bateman Bulterman said...

Much peace and love to you. I'm keeping you all in my prayers.

Carol Attwell said...

Thank you for taking such good care of Bea... and for sharing her beautiful spirit with us. She will long be remembered.

Artista said...

I was going to ask yesterday how she was...sigh, i have no idea why i felt so close to her, maybe someday i will know. I hope you will find comfort from your other "creatures" this morning, give them hugs for me.

Mare said...

There has been so much loss this past year. Stay strong and keep shining your love out to us all...

Sharon Stanley said...

poor little aunt bea. poor little katherine. you did the very best thing, and gave her more than she had ever had....now just rest in that and the peace that comes from knowing you did everything possible.

Ruth Armitage said...

Hugs to you....

Lis said...

I just didn't want to read this ...

I too cannot say why Aunt Bea went immediately into my heart ... I think it was the Hope and Promise of Love that your relationship with her represented. But what a gift to have given her that final month of love and comfort. You both did well. And she had her Christmas, as did we all reading knowing her story.

Ah, Aunt Bea - we miss you!

xo Lis

Michelle | Bleeding Espresso said...

Hugs to all xoxo

denise f said...

How wonderful Bea had you while she did -- at the hardest time of her life. I'm facing some very similar decisions soon in my barn. *sigh*

AnnK said...

Aunt Bea was blessed to receive such care at the end of her life---it is no small thing to ease her way. I applaud your strength and caring.

Sparroweye said...

My heart just bleeds for you. My hope is that in a dream you will see her again, well and whole. I had that with one animal. My Westie who died of bladder cancer. The only pet I ever saw after their death. She ran to me in a meadow from out of woods. Pure joy on her face to see me. But at last minute some sort of knowing came over her face. And she turned and ran back into the woods. And I woke up. Getting some chickens this spring and maybe an Alapaca to eat the back hill down. I heard they are nice pets.

Apifera Farm said...

I want to thank everyone near and far for their caring thoughts to me and for Aunt Bea, and for the support. Some animals and stories seem to hit people harder, and this little goat's life and death seem to be one of them. I was thinking about this in the past days, and realized that it was really the fact that there was such hope floating all around, hope from me that I could help her - and I never waivered-, hope from fans and followers she would make it, hope from my vet and New Moon. And really that is called love- believing you can make a difference, through helping in a direct way as I did in adopting and caring for her daily, or in indirect ways through emails, donations, and good vibes. She was one little tiger when it came to the will of her heart. She really got to me.

maccandace said...

I'm so sorry, Katherine. I just saw this.

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Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~