Dearly missed by Joanne and Doug Zbetnoff
The top picture of Vicki taken in 2002, when she was 4.5 years old… she was a truly beautiful greyhound. In addition to her physical beauty, Vicki pranced rather than walked as most dogs do. It would often cause people to slow down in their vehicles to stare at this beautiful dog walking down the street (or maybe they thought there was a deer at the end of that leash!). – Young children were fascinated with Vicki’s gentleness as well as her appearance. Vicki would stand absolutely still whenever children approached and patted her! They would often be forthright with the question “Is she a deer?”
Vicki’s kennel name was K.C.’s Little Prize, brought up from Arizona by Robert and Roberta Herr in July 2002. We adopted Vicki that same month although the Herrs fostered her for a few weeks during Vicki’s transition into civilian life!
I have included a couple of photos taken in December 2013, when Vicki was 15 years and 8 months of age. She appears fairly healthy in the photo, but her overcoat hides a body that was slowly wasting away. Vicki was in remarkable health for her age however! She was fairly good vision and hearing, full control of her bowels and all of her teeth except one molar (!!). She was finding it more and more difficult to rise up off her bed and also to fully squat or hold a steady position for her ‘potty relief’. Since ~ last August we have had to lift her up and down the stairs and into or out of the car. In her younger years Vicki attended daycare 1 or 2 days a week, which she LOVED. Daycare taught her to recognize smaller dogs as playmates versus being ‘rabbits in disguise’- in other words, she learned to selectively direct her strong prey drive toward the neighborhood cats and hares versus her smaller classmates! Eventually the puppies and smallest dogs at daycare came to appreciate the metabolic advantage that greyhounds have by lying against Vicki’s warm tummy during nap time.
Of course, Vicki had no qualms about that…greyhounds are so tolerant! In September Vicki experienced a very nasty stomach flu and never seemed to regain her vigour after that. Very slowly, she regained her appetite and well-being being but never really resumed her full activity levels or her appetite. Our harsh winter in Edmonton definitely took its toll on our aging girl, and I would sometimes have to run out to the back yard after her brief potty outings just to rescue her; she would stiffen up and become frightened in the -30c temp. By February it was evident that Vicki’s muscle wasting and stiffness were taking her down…she became wobbly on her feet and didn’t like to walk too far or too quickly. One morning she managed to get off her bed but could no longer stand up on her own. Even at that point her mind wanted to keep her ‘going’. We knew at that point that her struggle was no longer possible.
It is really difficult to write this, even two months after letting Vicki go. We miss that sweet girl that shared and taught us life lessons over the course of 11 and a half years. She was a stoic, independent girl that maintained a quiet wisdom. Yet over the yearsÂ there grew a love and bond that we all grew to appreciate.
Thank you Greyhound Pets, Inc. for allowing us to discover and appreciate this magnificent girl named Vicki. She was a great ambassador for the greyhound world. We will always be grateful for the experience you provided to us.
Sincerely, Joanne Zbetnoff