Nori has slipped off to the great dog park in the sky

Our black lab Nori. She died on July 7, 2010

Our beloved black lab Nori died last week after a sudden and mercifully brief battle with cancer.

Her last month was rough. In mid May she contracted salmonella and spent several days in the animal hospital. At one point during this I actually thought she was going to die she was so ill. Susan and I were greatly relieved when she came home and quickly reverted to her normal self.

Sadly this was not to last. After a couple of weeks we noted that she had begun to put on weight, and within a few days of that we knew something was wrong – she was gaining weight too quickly for this to be normal. The vet suggested it might be gas and we spent several days trying a medication, but to no avail. Within a week she was having so much difficulty breathing that Susan took her off to the animal hospital.

We then spent several weeks trying to figure out what was wrong with her. They drained 2 litres of fluid out of her during her first visit. Her recent bout with salmonella confused the diagnosis, but long story short within a couple of anxious weeks that included multiple hospital visits and drainings and a visit to a specialist hospital in Boston, we had a diagnosis – terminal cancer, probably in multiple locations in her body, but certainly in her bladder and almost certainly in her glands.

Within a week or so of this diagnosis, Nori was dead.

Needless to say this completely sucked. Susan and I were shocked and emotionally devastated. About the only good I can say of this experience was that fortunately Nori did not have to suffer very long. She had some rough weeks, with labored breathing and a rapid decline in body weight and stamina, but she was a trooper right through to the end, still anxious for her meals, eager to please us, and ready with a kiss and a wag of her tail, even when it cost her dearly to raise herself up.

She died in our arms at home on July 7, surrounded by those who loved her. Most of the folks who knew her well got a chance to see her at least once before she died. She’s buried in our yard, in view of the picture windows which look out over one of our gardens.

I’ll miss her dearly. Soolin and Nori did everything with Susan and I – they came to work with us, they’d usually accompany us on our errands, they were our hiking companions, they even attended our wedding (in fact, they’re the only people who attended our wedding!). It’s a terrible loss for us.

We’re going to spruce up the flower garden we buried her in, and I’m going to get a memorial page up for her on this site at as soon as I have a chance to pull together enough photos for it.

0 thoughts on “Nori has slipped off to the great dog park in the sky

  1. Kevin says:

    Sorry to hear about this… very sad for you guys. I’m sure that was really hard. But it sounds like Nori had about the best life a dog could ever want and that is not the case for so many. So you can smile knowing that she was obviously very happy right until the end. She was very lucky to have you guys! It will get easier!


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