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King Lucius Is Gone (Closin Time)


GreytHoundPoet
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This has taken a long time to write. Mostly it was because I keep reliving the end of the story and it didn’t have a happy ending. It is also partly because we suffered two major losses in less than six months. Feeling numb does not begin to explain it.


We lost Lucius suddenly on November 1, a day after he was diagnosed with early stage Osteosarcoma. We had planned to let him go just a few days after diagnosis, to maintain his quality of life and let him go peacefully and dignified. He was not a candidate for amputation due to advanced lumber sacral stenosis so his options were limited. Fate had other plans than ours and we ended up at the emergency vet the next night after he fell and destroyed the shoulder that his tumor was in. We were with him every moment until the end. I stayed next to him on the ride to the emergency vet and my normally non-snuggly dog let me hold him and keep him close the whole way. His last night still haunts me as if it just happened and I never wish that kind of passing on any dog or family.


Lucius is the reason that we walked down the path that we did with our canine family. He was our first Greyhound and he started a great love for Greyhounds and, by extension, sighthounds in general. Because of him we fostered for years and placed more Greyhounds than we can count. He was the flame that started the fire in our lives. His name means “light” or “illumination” and he was every bit of that.


He was the most beautiful dog that I have ever laid eyes upon, a uniquely colored blue fawn brindle with entrancing golden amber eyes. His coat was a beautiful blue fawn with blue stripes overlaid on his body. He was difficult to photograph because of this. In person he would shift from a golden blue to a dusky blue depending on the light. He had blue pigment and light, amber eyes and was simply a striking dog that drew attention from almost everyone who saw him. More than that, he was strong, proud, dignified, confident, and regal with a definite dash of goofy. He commanded a room or space with a glance and body language. and got fawned over almost everywhere he went. Luckily he was incredibly sweet with people and loved to lean into you as you pet him and hugged him. He was well behaved and would never steal food, destroy things, or get into much mischief. He was gentle on walks and walked right next to me with ease. He loved walks and would shove his head through a color and then zoom, dance, and leap about with joy when he knew he was going somewhere. His excitement was always contagious!

Lucius won “Most Unique” our first year at Greyhound Planet Day (2008) and was voted King of Greyhound Planet Day in 2009. The way he strutted around you would think that he knew how special he was!


He had an intense prey drive and was a sight to behold when he spotted prey. He would go still, muscles tensing in a very powerful, dignified way. He was fast, a successful AA and A racer at Gulf Greyhound at some points in his career. A kennel favorite, we got a hand written note from his racing owner after we adopted him and did the necessary paperwork to get his blue slip. I always wanted to let him chase lures but he has some old injuries that acted up with too much intense activity in a short period of time.


Lucius and I were particularly close because I was his lifetime advocate. He presented some challenges as a pet, particularly with reactivity issues. He had difficulty controlling himself when he got over amped and would lash out at the nearest dog. Unfortunately that led to a few attacks in our home over the years. It was a serious learning curve. This was a dog that many said they would rehome or put down but I saw the good in him and refused to just cast aside my “problem”. We took precautions to minimize any issues and I learned to read him at every level, down to slight body shift changes. I also learned his triggers and worked hard to counteract impending situations. This led to a closeness preserved by a large dose of trust and respect between him and me. Through this our bond grew and the situations became less and less and, in the end, he had much better control over himself and came to me when a situation would arise. He went from trying to jump other dogs to grumbling and removing himself from the situation and coming to me to calm him down. This close bond led to my detection of his illness at the end. He developed a limp and it actually got better over a couple of days. Most people would have looked at that as a minor issue that healed. His behavior, however, was off. Lucius was not a snuggly dog and would ask for attention by standing on my lap or coming to be petted. It was rare for him to snuggle me and I remember on a few occasions waking up in bed with him next to me but as soon as I would shift he would move. So, when my normally aloof dog who only asked for occasional attention and had a large bubble was suddenly crawling on my lap much more than usual and cuddling up next to me often I knew something was up. Clearly he was telling me that things were not right.


Lucius had some really fun quirks. When he was really excited he’d walk in this long, tall goose step and cover tones of ground while bouncing. He had a very princely prance. Once I was trying to get Lorelei to come to me in the yard and I said “who’s my pretty lady?” and Lucius ran to me. It earned the nickname “Prince Fancy Prance”. His highness also wanted to be towel dried when he came in from the rain and wrapped in blankets when it was cold. He loved collars and would shove his head through a collar if I held it out. He also loved jackets and pajamas and would ask to wear them when it got cold outside and he saw me pull them out. He loved going places but got bored quickly if he wasn’t getting tons of attention or doing something very fun. He was a Hounds of East Fairhaven veteran and we started the group as a team the year that I adopted him (2007). He was a natural at the event and really loved the belly dancers, the petting zoo, and Spyglass. He'd get bored sitting around pretty quickly though and was ready for new adventure.


When we first got Lucius he wanted to jump on me when I came home. He’s a big dog, relatively speaking, and would knock me over so I decided that we needed to stop his jumping. We started keeping toys by the door and tossing them when we walked in the door. He loved toys when he was excited so it was a perfect solution. After that he always showed his excitement by grabbing the nearest toy, flinging it about, play-bowing, and zooming all over playing. It was so delightful and filled with joy. I miss it greatly. Lucius loved small toys the most and would often do zoomies with them. He would also keep toys with him and snuggle them. He loved playing inside, leaping from bed to bed, and running full, crazy zoomie circles outside while tossing toys around. He always chose favorite toys and would play with them until they were beyond saving. A stuffed flea, an eggplant that giggled, a Pound Puppy and Kitty, and spider were among his favorites.


Lucius’ nickname was Boo and he loved to sing (roo). He was a very quiet dog normally but loved to start or join in a choir of hound singing. When he wanted to get our attention and was not succeeding in his polite manner he would softly roo at us. It sounds like “Mm’boo”. It was adorable. He would Mm’boo at us and then try to show us what he wanted. Sometimes he drew out the sound in an adorable fashion. His mouth would chitter when he was excited as well. He always chittered when he sang. He loved me singing to him as well and we had a version of the Winnie the Pooh song (Lucius the Boo) that I sang to him. He was my Boo Bear. I sang it to him while petting and kissing him as we said goodbye and he was content despite the pain. He knew he was loved.


​He was our first hound and taught us so much about life, hounds, patience, trust, respect, behavior, and the simple joy in taking a walk. He graced us with his regal presence and took us on many adventures. We miss his songs, his "mmmbooos", his prancing and zoomies, his way of showing affection by climbing on my lap, his gentle manner when being pet, taking treats, and his politeness on walks. We miss the simple joy that he showed when we came home, when we went on adventures, and when we brought home a new toy or treat. His high stepping prances and extremely soulful glances are missing from our home. He could be difficult at times but delightful otherwise and I'll never regret the decision to bring him home and share my heart with him. Run free, handsome boo bear. May the fields at the rainbow bridge be filled with bunnies, small toys, and zoomies and I hope you have found Timmy, Argos, and Lucky Girl by now. I'll see you again someday.




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Edited by GreytHoundPoet
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I'm so sorry for your loss

Jan with precious pups Emmy (Stormin J Flag) and Simon (Nitro Si). Missing my angels: Bailey Buffetbobleclair 11/11/98-17/12/09; Ben Task Rapid Wave 5/5/02-2/11/15; Brooke Glo's Destroyer 7/09/06-21/06/16 and Katie Crazykatiebug 12/11/06 -21/08/21. My blog about grief The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not get over the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same, nor would you want to. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

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That was a beautiful tribute to your special boy.

 

Run free, Lucius. :f_red

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Camp Broodie. The current home of Mark Kay Mark Jack and LaVida I've Got Life.  Always missing my boy Rocket Hi Noon Rocket,  Allie  Phoenix Dynamite, Kate Miss Kate, Starz Under Da Starz, Petunia MW Neptunia and Diva Astar Dashindiva 

 

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I am so very sorry for your loss. I do hate cancer. It is the thief who robs us, everyday, of those we love.

Irene Ullmann w/Flying Odin in Lower Delaware
Angels Brandy, John E, American Idol, Paul, Fuzzy and Shine
Handcrafted Greyhound and Custom Clocks http://www.houndtime.com
Zoom Doggies-Racing Coats for Racing Greyhounds

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What a very special relationship you had :wub: .

 

Godspeed, handsome.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Shannon I am so sorry, thank you for sharing his story, try to focus on his early days and not the end, sending big hugs.

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Roberta & Michael with Furkids- Flower (Shasta Flowers 6/7/06) & Rascal the kitty - Missing our sweet angels - Max(M's Mad Max) 10/12/02 - 12/3/15, Sara (Sara Raves 6/30/01 - 4/13/12) Queenie & Pandora the kitties - gone but never forgotten

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So very sorry for the loss of your handsome boy.

You made so many wonderful memories... remember them and smile.....

 

Nancy...Mom to Sid (Peteles Tiger), Kibo (112 Carlota Galgos).   Missing Casey, Gomer, Mona, Penelope, BillieJean, Bandit, Nixon (Starz Sammie),  Ruby (Watch Me Dash) Nigel (Nigel), and especially little Mario, waiting at the Bridge.

 

 

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I'm so very sorry. Your stunning playful boy really started something. He had to leave much too soon.

 

Godspeed Lucius.

Standard Poodle Daisy (12/13); Greys Hildy (Braska Hildy 7/10), Toodles (BL Toodles 7/09), Opal (Jax Opal 7/08)
Missing Cora (RL Nevada 5/99-10/09), Piper (Cee Bar Easy 2/99-1/10), Tally (Thunder La La 9/99-3/10), Edie (Daring Reva 9/99-10/12), Dixie (Kiowa Secret Sue 11/01-1/13), Jessie (P's Real Time 11/98-3/13), token boy Graham (Zydeco Dancer 9/00-5/13), Cal (Back Already 12/99-11/13), Betsy (Back Kick Beth 11/98-12/13), Standard Poodles Minnie (1/99-1/14) + Perry (9/98-2/14), Annie (Do Marcia 9/03-10/14), Pink (Miss Pinky Baker 1/02-6/15), Poppy (Cmon Err Not 8/05-1/16), Kat (Jax Candy 5/05-5/17), Ivy (Jax Isis 10/07-7/21)

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Shannon, such a sad time for you. Lucius' loss, especially one so sudden, is heartbreaking. I'm so sorry you lost your beautiful, precious boy.

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Nancy, Mom to Evangelina, Kiva and Laila
Missing Lacey, Patsy, Buster, my heart dog Nick, Winnie, Pollyanna, Tess, my precious Lydia, Calvin Lee, and kitties Lily, Sam and Simon
My Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/Catsburgandhoundtown

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So sorry for your loss. I find myself doing the same thing after I lost my dachshund back in May. It was traumatic. I hope you find some peace.

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Waiting at the bridge: Buddy James, Cookie Dough, Shelby, and Mac. My angels :angelwings:angelwings:angelwings:angelwings

New dog mom to dachshunds Ginger and Ruger :banana:banana

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