Oh please, oh please, oh please say you have!!!
Today we ended up with a completely FREAK snow storm that resulted in a snow day. A snow day in Canada is a big deal. Seriously. So we had a lot of snow. We had blizzard like conditions upon arrival home from work tonight. It was disgusting. It was freezing. It was starting to freezing rain. And our sweet little Hotdog went out for a bathroom break. And noticed someone left the gate open for him. Unfortunately Mr. Pretties didn't put two and two together for almost an hour. We've spent the last three hours combing the frozen tundra like neighbourhood to no avail.
I hadn't realized, but realize quite well now, that Hotdog was actually our fifth child. We've lost cats before, and cats are smart, cats will come home on their own if they're able. They'll catch a mouse if they're hungry and they'll outwit any human/dog/car, so although I do worry, it's not necessarily the end of the world. Except for the time our cat Pickle got out and got attacked by a new neighbourhood beast of a dog and died. That was actually the end of the world. I'm still dying inside over that. But dogs don't know how to take care of themselves. Specifically Hotdog is a miniature dachshund who is afraid to go on his leash and as a by-product has no interest in going for neighbourhood walks. Thusly, he is lost after moseying two houses away.
The thought of him out there alone, cold and scared is literally teetering on the edge of self implosion. It actually completely explains the phrase 'I just can't handle the thought' because really, I can't handle the thought, any thought, that doesn't involve Hotdog sleeping in his warm bed with his dachshund lovie. This is the dog that shivers when it's cooler than 20 degrees in the house. It's -3 tonight. The snow is twice as deep as he is tall. I honestly don't think we'll ever see him again. The kids are going to be absolutely crushed in the morning when they wake up and he's not there.
I said to Mr. Pretties I just don't think I can go on without him in our lives, he's like trying to live without an arm or a leg (if arms or legs constantly stood right infront of where you were trying to walk at any given time and barked maniacally at any sound that could possibly be someone knocking on a door within a 50 block radius) and even though people DO go on to live without arms, or legs, or both, I don't want to.
We adopted a puppy before Hotdog, a basset named Turnip who we adored, but who came to us unknowingly with Parvo and within six weeks had to put him to sleep. It killed us. Hotdog lit up our lives again, he made the hurt not so bad and helped us heal. And now he's gone. The big city snow plows are up and down our street every half hour which is ripping me apart, he's either going to freeze, get run over, get buried in a snowbank or get found by a family who wants to keep him for themselves. Of all the scenarios, if it came down to it I would choose a new family for him so long as he was healthy and happy. Tomorrow I'll put out all the calls to the shelters, vets, and pop up signs.
I knew we loved Hotdog and that he was family, but I didn't realize how impaired we'd feel without his presence. Just knowing he's not in the house somewhere makes it so silent and lonely. Above all, Hotdog was a fabulous companion. Who really liked to ruin my stuff. A lot. But I still loved him. Even that time he wrecked my brand new, more-than-I'd-Tell-Mr-Pretties-I-Paid-For sheets.
Here's hoping for a miracle, because that's what it's going to take to get our weiner back. I absolutely dread the thought of having to deal with the reality that he wont be back, ever, and having to pack up his stuff because it's too painful to bare. The thought alone makes my insides feel all slithery. I'm not even being dramatic. At all. Okay I am, but it's how I work through the pain.