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My sweet Jude was born on May 14, 2011. I knew the minute he was born that he was "special"...he would not stay upright like the other puppies. My vet had been very involved in every step of our Sadie's breeding and pregnancy and I let him know immediately that we had a special boy. He said to keep an eye on him, make sure he was nursing and he would check him out in 3 days when we took them in for their tail docking. Jude hung in there, he had trouble nursing, but he was strong and when I took him in my vet said he was fine and nothing to worry about. When Jude was 9 days old, we almost lost him. He was lethargic and super skinny...this all happened in a matter of hours. We rushed him to the vet where I was told that I should put him down. I couldn't bear to do that, so we had him put on IV for his dehydration and I brought him home and started bottle feeding him. He thrived...he loved his bottle and his big fat belly made us all so happy! I would feed him and then put him back in with his litter mates for the usual cleaning...he still had trouble staying upright, but he could hold his own.

Once the puppies opened their eyes and ears, we truly knew that we had a very special baby. Jude was completely deaf. He was still smaller than the other pups, but he was growing and although the other pups progressed much faster than Jude, I knew I had made the right decision in not putting him down. I also knew that Jude was home, he was my baby and he would always be my little man. There are so many things I could say about how wonderful Jude was...how he would wander away from the rest of the puppies and then just walk in a slightly panicked circle until I would come and rescue him...how he would tilt his head to the side when we talked to him...how he would bunny hop up the stairs...there were so many things about this little imperfect creature that made him absolutely perfect.

Fast forward to September 20, 2011. Jude had been throwing up and having diarrhea so I immediately took him to the vet. He got an antibiotic shot and a nausea shot and 3 different meds for me to give him at home. He tested negative for Parvo (vaccines did their job!) and the vet said he should be fine in a few days. I brought him home and followed my vet's instructions and Jude did perk up, until the shots wore off. On Friday, I already had an appointment for 4:30 but Jude obviously did not feel good so I took him in as soon as I got my human children off to school. Something had changed...the vet said his stomach did not feel the same as it had on Tuesday. So...we had an ultrasound and it confirmed that Jude's intestines were folding back into itself and emergency surgery was needed. I insisted on going back to give my little man a kiss and a hug. Jude was there on a table being attended by 2 girls and when I came in, he stretched his neck to my hands and as I kissed his nose, he licked my face. I told him how much I loved him and that I would be back for him soon. The girls working on him were very good at getting his attention so that I could slip out without him getting excited and trying to go with me. They said they would call me as soon as Jude was out of surgery...said for me not to worry...and said that he would have to go to an emergency vet clinic for the night so he would have all night care because this was a very serious surgery. I was crying when I left...I couldn't stand the thought of my little man not being at home that night...he had never spent the night away from me and since he was "special" I didn't know if he would understand and be scared.

I called the vet after I had been gone for an hour and a half to check on Jude...I was told he was on the table, everything was fine, they would call me when he was waking up. I couldn't wait...I called back an hour later to check on him again. I was put on hold, the same as the first time I called, and then instead of one of the girls coming on the line, a man answered. He called me "Mrs. Jude" instead of Mrs. Little, and when I confirmed it was me, he said, "We lost Jude." I broke down...accused him of lying...begged him to tell me this was a cruel joke...then I asked why. He was very obviously upset, I could tell that when he answered the phone. He said in a very shaky, holding back tears voice, "I overdosed him on anesthesia." I told him I couldn't talk and I had to go and hung up...then I really had a break down. I called my husband and he left work early to come home...then I called the vet back and told them I had to see Jude. We got our girls out of school early, told them what happened and we all went to see our Jude one last time.

Needless to say, the trip to the vet's office was tearful. We all walked in crying and we were greeted by our usual team of office girls who were all struggling to hold back their own tears...there were 2 ladies that had spent a lot of time with me and Jude and they broke down and hugged me very tight. They took us to an exam room where the vet who had performed Jude's surgery was waiting for us. He was a mess, his eyes were red and he was shaking, it was very obvious that he was upset. He was trying so hard to stay composed to talk to us and he was very honest. He told us that Jude's surgery had gone extremely well...he found the affected area of intestine, removed it and patched the intestine...he said all of it was pink and that after he reattached it there was movement on both sides of the incision. He said that after he check and rechecked his work, he began to close Jude up and that is when Jude crashed. He said he checked and rechecked everything and that when he checked Jude's "vapors" they were very high. I felt so many things during this discussion, confusion, anger, fear...but at that point all I really wanted was to see my boy. I told him I really couldn't talk about all of this in my condition and I just wanted to see Jude. He led us to the back where the girls had prepared Jude for us to see him. We walked in, Jude was laying facing away from the door. He was covered in an ugly green and brown towel with his precious head laying on a white towel folded to make him a pillow. I touched the back of his neck and it was cold...all of the hope that I could walk back there and my Judie would come back to me was gone. I held his face in my hands, looked him in the eye and kissed his nose a million times...I told him how much I loved him and how much I was going to miss him. My family all gathered around Jude and cried. I kissed him one last time and we left. The girls at the office had made a terra cotta heart with Jude's paw print in it...they gave it to us and it was still wet.

Jude died on September 23, 2011. Today is September 26, 2011 and I still have not stopped crying. It is not getting easier...I miss him more with every hour that passes. He and I were at home during the day when my husband and my girls were at school. We had our routine. Our home is just not the same without Jude. My youngest daughter, 12, made the comment that everything has changed, yet nothing has changed. Our house is still the same, but it is totally different. We are all still the same people, yet we are all different now. Our hearts are broken...

Jude was exactly 4 months and 9 days old when he died. I had started to bottle feed him when he was 9 days old, so I had exactly 4 months with this beautiful, sweet boy. When my vet had initially told me that I should put him to sleep, I told my vet that at 9 days old, Jude didn't know what love was yet and there was no way I could let him leave this earth not knowing he was loved. In the next 4 months, my Jude knew love...he received it and he gave it back. Just a week before Jude died, I was sitting on the couch with Jude in his usual position beside me...he was just looking at me...and I turned to my husband and said, "I wish you looked at me the way Jude does." Now, my husband is wonderful, we have a strong marriage and we love each other tremendously...but when Jude looked at me, it was different...it was like love just oozed out of him. I miss that...and I always will.

I am sorry that my introduction to the group was such a long, sad story...but I felt like it was a story that needed to be told. Jude was such an imperfect dog...but it was those imperfections that made him perfect. One day, I will stop crying...but I will never stop missing him. I'm happy to have found a doberman group, I know that anyone who has ever had a doberman will understand. They are wonderful dogs...and I was so lucky to have had the most wonderful doberman in the world as my little boy.
 

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Welcome to the forum. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I too lost a dobie at too young of an age. I am thankful for the time I had with him. My best friend said to me, "Ever since day one with that puppy, he had been sick, each time you were able to fix it. This time, God was determined to have have him, He has another plan for that puppy's soul". I took comfort in those words. I hope they help you through this difficult time...
 

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It sounds like Jude was what many breeders call a "ding" puppy. In other words, he had a severe vestibular infection when born. One long-term breeder, now deceased, said that if you got them on clavamox right away, you might be able to bring them around. Anyway, I believe there is a researcher studying ding puppies now, trying to figure out why and how to avoid.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
MaryandDobes...I looked up some information on "ding" puppies and I don't think that is what Jude was...he was never as severe as the videos I watched and although he was clumsy, he was never anything like the video of the puppy I saw. Thank you for suggesting that though, I had never heard of it and it is definitely something I want to research further. I really think it was just Jude's deafness that made it difficult for him to stay upright when he was born...and as soon as his eyes opened, that went away. Jude was just a special, special little man...and it is a shame he was taken from us so soon.

Thank you all for your supportive words and prayers...
 

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Oh, that must have been so awful -- actually still is awful. So sorry.
 

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So sorry for your loss of Jude.
What an absolutely heartwrenching story.
 

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Tears streaming down my face...
:emo11:
Please find the stregnth within yourself, your family and your other Dobbies to get threw your heart break...

My heart goes out to you and the little life you lost...
Cherish everyday with our loved ones... everyday...
 
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