Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Trigger Man

I wanted to write this before the memories start to fade. As much as I want to believe those memories will never fade, I know eventually they will dim. 

Trigger Man was our puppy. He was a Miniature Schnauzer. We got him on February 22nd. He was A little over 10 weeks old. (His Birthday was December 8, 2013) 

Trigger came from Michael's cousin. He breeds schnauzers, and Trigger was the last puppy left from his last litter. 
We had been planning to get the girls a dog after we lost Newman, our Bulldog, the previous summer. We hadn't exactly planned on what kind of dog to get, or when to get it though! Trigger was kind of a meant to be situation. It worked out perfect. 
The night we went to see him for the first time we ended up bringing him home. We were already in love. He was the cutest puppy ever! 
We picked him up and went right to Petsmart to buy him a bed, toys and puppy gear! Michael was a puppy hog the whole time! I planned to make him my 'baby' and Michael totally stole it from me! He was in love with him immediately. 

Girls had NO idea about the puppy so it was a huge surprise for them! It was AWESOME to see those 4 faces light up!! 

Trigger made himself at home right away. He was the best puppy! He was pretty much already house broken. While in the beginning he did have a few incidents, he was pretty awesome at waiting to go outside!! 
I often called him my cuddle buddy. As soon as I sat down he was right there wanting to be picked up, just to cuddle with me! He also never had a problem with taking over the couch!


When we bought all of his gear from Petsmart we signed up for the puppy package. It pretty much included coupons on products. It also had a free puppy bath coupon too! 

While I loved Trigger's little floppy ears, apparently the breed specific look was to have the ears cropped. I was not a fan. But after a little research we ended up finding an amazing vet out in Johns Creek. Turns out they do not 'cut' the ears. They are done by laser. While puppy would be asleep they laser the ear. It has almost no blood and almost no after pain. And a fast healing time! I was sold! Michael took Trigger to have the ears done. We took a picture as the last time with my floppy ears! 
 Michael has a little issue with smiling in pictures, can you tell?

 I wasn't expecting the process to be as easy as it was. But it was! Trigger came home sleepy that day. And the next day it was like nothing had ever happened. He was energetic and happy and obviously not bothered at all. Except it did become his mission to get the neck piece off. Eventually he did end up breaking it. lol

 It took a few weeks for the ears to completely heal before we were able to start wrapping them. That makes them stand tall, giving a fierce look :) 
We had settled into life with a puppy. He was the center of attention in the house. I took him with me a lot in the car. He got used to it real quick! 
Maggie and Madison tried to teach him to sleep in their beds. That didn't work to well. He was already crate trained so when we got his big crate, he took to it immediately. I often called him the sock bandit. If there was a sock on the floor or within reach- it became his toy! Although his favorite toy was his duck. He loved that duck!! 

Once we started getting his ears wrapped, the vet became a life saver. She also had a mini schnauzer. She taught me SO much about the breed and the to do and not to do! I called her several times for advice. It was apparent we found that vet for a reason. They were amazing!! (Windward in John's Creek if you need a good one!) I was sad we couldn't use them as our normal vet. A 45 min drive just isn't possible all the time! But 3-4 times was SO worth it. I will never forget how amazing they were!!  
Trigger did really well getting wrapped. They taught me how to do it at home if I ever had to, but turned out I never did. He was a little stubborn at first, but after the 3rd visit he was a pro! 

It didn't take long before he was out of the wraps and had pretty standing ears! Easter came along, and what do you know- puppy's get Easter presents too :) 
Trigger had most definitely become part of the family and we loved him SOO much! 

Trigger's First Groom-

There is that infamous fierce look! Such a stud!

 Trigger was also the cuddler. Every night before it was his 'bedtime' he snuggled with me and Michael in our bed. Then when we were ready to go to sleep we would say "time for bed" and he went right to his crate!

 Getting a hair-do by daddy!

 Most all day long you could find him looking out the window or door. He loved barking at birds and squirrels! And chasing them. I cannot tell you how many times he charged out the front door. He was an adventurer. The house across the street has chickens in the back yard. As soon as Trigger could get free he would head over there to visit them! Used to drive me nuts! He would not come to you. There was no way to catch up to him. Several times I just let him do his thing. Within 5 min he would be at the front door whining to come inside. Filthy. lol. Where ever he adventured to, there was always mud involved!! 
He was even as adventurous to figure out how to squeeze through the back part of the fence to go in the neighbors yard!! The neighbor has two dogs. If they were ever all out at same time there was definitely alot of barking. I really think Trigger just wanted to go play with them! And he thought if he ended up in their yard he could!! We fixed fence, so he never actually got that chance! 
Trigger also would be just like this the minute he heard Michael pull into the driveway!! 
Remember when I said Michael was a puppy hog?? He knew what he was doing! Trigger was Daddy's baby for sure!
 Father's Day. Dad with all 5 babies!
 Of all the girls, Maggie was definitely most attached.

I tried to mentally prepare myself to tell this story. That's why I waited to blog about it. 
Wednesday September 10th. Started out a normal day. That morning he actually had a little adventure, again. I had a field trip with Maggie to a farm. So I was gone most of the day. While I was gone my aunt called me with bad news about one of her dogs. She was on the way to the vet when she lost him on her lap. I remember coming home and hugging Trigger extra tight! The rest of the evening was normal. After dinner Michael had left to take something to his bosses house. I was making my bed and Trigger was competing for blanket! He loved our bed! He was laying on the bed after I had made it while I got girls ready for bedtime. M&M had changed and Maggie couldn't find her teddy. I told Maggie she left Teddy outside. She went to go get the teddy. I heard the front door shut and then open again. Maggie cam running down the hall to me saying Trigger got out. Which was odd, bc he had never gone outside at dark. By the time I got to the living room (maybe 10 seconds) Aaliyah was saying he was crying, he was hurt. I ran out the front door. Trigger was laying near the bottom of our yard. He was shaking, crying, looked almost like a seizure. I freaked out. I picked him up in my arms and was going to carry him inside to the light to see what was wrong.  I only made it about 10 steps when the shaking stopped. The noise stopped. And blood came out of his mouth.
My little man left us in my arms. In the front yard. In front of all the girls. 
I couldn't do anything but scream, and cry, and beg it not to be so. 
The girls cried. It was the most horrific scene. I layed Trigger down and got my phone to call Michael and tell him to get home ASAP. I tried to comfort girls. I called my mom. I had the big girls take little girls into their room and try to calm down. My mom and Michael arrived at my house around the same time. Michael got off his bike and fell to the ground beside Trigger. If my heart wasn't already broken, it would have broken at that moment. 
Michael examined his body looking for any kind of evidence of something that would have caused his death. Nothing. No explanation. 
My mom helped comfort the girls and get them calm. 
Michael put trigger into a box and in the outside freezer. I had just emptied the freezer and defrosted it, so that was a blessing. 
The girls had a rough next day. They stayed home from school. Michael stayed home from work. Michael and I took Trigger to the Pet Crematory. I couldn't bare to bury him. I wanted him with us still. 
Girls commented a bunch about missing him and wishing he was still here. 
It was hard.  
This was Trigger in the waiting area of the crematory. We were able to pray over him and say our goodbyes.

That weekend we had a football game and afterwards we took girls to see Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles at Movie Tavern. Dinner and a movie to help bring some smiles back!

That Tuesday he was ready to come home. 
Trigger now is with us each in every day. Not only in spirit. His ashes are in a small container inside this memory box. It sits on the shelf in the living room right above a family picture. 

 It's still strange coming home to no one excited to see me. No more barking. 
While we have found peace without our Trigger Man, we will never forget him.