Camille Saint-SaŽns      October 11, 1993 - February 23, 2004

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Pictures taken on February 23, 2004, shortly before Sassy was put to sleep.  Click on thumbnails to view larger images.

On the evening of Thursday, February 19, 2004, we noticed that Sassy was getting a bit swollen around the eyes, neck, and face.  Also, he was experiencing some reddish hemorrhaging around his right ear and down around his neck.  

On Friday, he visited Dr. Custis and following a blood test, it was determined that he likely had a cancerous situation going on that was depleting red blood cells (similar to Sebastian's demise).  Though he began a regimen of antibiotics, his situation didn't get much better, and his appetite began to wane.  He last ate his regular meal on Thursday night, but since then, was uninterested in his usual fare.  

He was unable to get around very well, and though he continued to drink and urinate, wasn't very responsive and beginning to get rather wobbly when walking around.  His tongue also was getting paler through the period here, so he was (like Sebastian) beginning to get anemic as well.

And so, on Monday morning, I talked to Dr. Custis, and we agreed that he should be put to sleep that evening, since he wasn't going to get better, and it was likely that his condition would only worsen to the point of needless pain.  A little boy like Sassy deserves much better than to suffer so.  He was beginning to show signs of forced breathing, which was indicative of his having problems getting enough oxygen, when we arrived at the vet.  By 5:50 pm, Sassy was resting peacefully.  The entire family and canines as well accompanied his funeral procession to the pet cemetery, and he was interred at 6:30 pm.  (At the request of the deceased, there was to be no visitation.)

Photo of the grave site.  Sassy's is marked with a candle.  This marks the end of the aged foursome, Sassy, Sebastian, Rosco, and Mozart.


Some historical notes.....(repeated here from Sebastian's Memorial page, but since the context is different this time, it seems somehow appropriate.)

[An excerpt from My Diary, No. 12]

 

THANKSGIVING 1993

"… Also, I was getting Ute a puppy (miniature schnauzer) for [a] wedding [gift]. Well… Found one from a breeder in Cincinnati. Debatable authenticity, but they were nice enough. The first one we found was already named "Sassy". It had a brother, a very quiet one, and little.

DECEMBER 1993

When we went to see them, we decided to get both. Ute had already gone [the] day before (December, 3, Fri.). That evening, Kelly Albainy-Jenei and I played for the Siemens Accounting and MIS Christmas Party. Ute talked about the puppies she’d seen.

12/4/93

Then, when we both went, Saturday, I decided I liked "Sassy" and Ute liked the other. So…. We got both, and voila, had 2!

So, [wanting to keep famous composers in the naming convention,] Sassy became Charles Camille Saint-Saens, and Sebastian was to be Johann Sebastian Bach, but that name was already taken [in the AKC register]. So, we renamed him "Sebastian von Pueschel, after the maiden name of Ute’s mother, which was nobility…"

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So as you can see, Sassy was actually the culprit here, that won over Ute's heart initially, which caused us to visit the folks that had these guys for sale.  Sassy endured several orthopedic knee operations, diabetes since 1997, and was the one we naturally assumed would have died before his brother Sebastian.    

Before the property fence was installed in the spring of 2002, and before he was blind from diabetes, he would regularly leave the property, being the only one of our many pets to worry us (and the neighbors) so.   But now, Sassy can join Basti in their timeless romping over the rainbow, and not worry about where the next meal is coming from, or whether his parents forgot to give him his insulin, or whether or not a new strange member  of the canine family was coming to stay unannounced for a while.

All told, Sassy had diabetes for 4 years and 8 months;  twice daily injections, that adds up to 3408 insulin shots (give or take a few forgotten ones, etc.).  That sounds like a ridiculous amount of work, but for a dear friend like Sassy, you get used to it after a few months...

 

  

To Sassy

 Sassy Butt,  like your brother, you always helped yourself to our shoe laces as a puppy;

When you would run off in spite of the electric fence,  you would cause us and the neighbors no end of grief, as we would search for you high and low.

Finally, when you lost your eye sight on account of your diabetes, you settled down, and accepted your lot in life, being surrounded by a human and canine family, that kept you safe and sound.

Sassy, you kept us company when your brother left us, and we thank you for that.

But now, with your passing, the last of the "older generation" is gone, and your legacy passes on to Kimberly, Alexis, and Princess.

Though your passing is a sad end to over 10 happy years with you in our home, 
We will always remember your "sassy" nature, and your manly little charm, with which you snuggled your way next to all of our hearts.  

Though your little matt will now be empty, and we'll not have you licking our faces from our laps again, know that like those who have gone before you, you'll always share a special place in all of our hearts.

 Goodbye, Sassy.  You were a very good boy.