RIP ZoeBelle Lawson, the 17.5 year old miniature poodle in our family. https://instagram.com/zoebelle_lawson
She had a good run. She was adopted as a pup by a 70 year old couple, who kept her until they were 85 and could no longer care for her, as they were moved to a nursing home themselves. She was in foster, or at the shelter (Seattle Humane) for a while, and she was a laid back old gal who was mostly blind and mostly deaf. She was, the past few years of her life, kept indoors in a condo, as her owners couldn't take her out all the time, and it was tough for her to get around for long trips anyways.
We adopted her about 1.5 years ago and brought her home. She had a nice little nook near the heater vent, lots of love, and all kinds of treats and foods. We have a fenced in back yard, so she was able to walk in and out as she pleased. She even had a bit of pep in her step around 3:30 every morning; she would get her "zoomies" and trot through the place. When she smelled a treat (perhaps some shredded cheese, which was a fav, as she only had 3-4 remaining teeth at that age) she would come up to you and turn around in circles; quite the feat for such a vintage pup.
Lots of tears, but we spoke to the doctor at the shelter and agreed it was time for her to stop suffering. For the past couple of weeks, every 3-4 days, she would just fall over, with her legs momentarily paralyzed. She would give the saddest yelps I've ever heard, b/c she was scared. The past weekend, she started doing it more frequently, and she quit doing the barks. She was doing good just to get to her water bowl, and she knew we would be along to help her back to her heated blanket, and bring her food and water, as Zoe would often refer to her as a queen (yes, I have a 17 year old daughter and a 2-month older miniature poodle with the same name, hence the "ZoeBelle vs Zoe.")
Since everyone was home, we all got to spend some time with her. The kids have been taking turns sleeping on the couch to care for her in case she fell, but she's had trouble breathing, and it was the right time. She was a good pup, and she'll be missed.