Tag Archives: Moxy


It’s been a sad time here and everything feels so much emptier since Moxie passed away on Tuesday night. She’d had a good, long life, and at sixteen she was still going strong, if somewhat unsteady on her feet, but still determined to take on full flights of stairs and short walks. We knew things were failing internally, but her spirit was still strong, along with her attitude and appetite… until the other night. Thankfully it all happened within a short time; that morning she’d been perfectly fine, and we’d been told things would be sudden and fast. We could see she was shutting down, letting go, and while that was probably the best way for things to end. Still, it doesn’t hurt any less and it will take time to come to terms with her passing.


Our gratitude goes out to the staff at Oradell Animal Hospital for their compassionate understanding and gentle help, letting her pass away with her family at her side, and even for placing her in a pet sized sturdy cardboard ‘casket’ for us rather than a black plastic trash bag. The clay paw print someone there made for us was unexpected and will be treasured. I’m also grateful to Anthony Erekat at Faithful Companion in Clifton, NJ, who handled Moxie’s cremation. Located in a separate portion of a tasteful funeral home, Faithful Companion offers the same services for pets with the same dignity you would expect for any family member, and that brought us more comfort we truly needed.

I know in my heart Moxie had a good life, long and happy, and she was loved dearly. I know in time this will sting less, but right now our home feels like something essential is missing. Loki and Rex still keep looking for her, they don’t understand where their leader has gone and they have a bit of a lost look as they come to understand they don’t have her lead to follow anymore. We’ll all adjust, but it will take time.

Ask not for whom the bell tolls…

It’s 3 a.m. and once again I’m up, just as I am nearly every night. No, it’s not insomnia, at least not any more.  It’s Moxy.

Years ago we found a puppy on the streets of Queens, tied by a rope leash to a fence in an industrial area, clearly abandoned. She was an unruly little monster, sassy, stubborn and smart as hell. She has a dominant personality and immediately tried to call the shots with Luna and Nova, our two very well-mannered older dogs. And among the puppy challenges was housebreaking, so to help the new addition alert us when she needed to go out I hung a cord with bells from the back door in the kitchen. Moxy quickly learned that nosing those bells would result in the nearest human letting her out; once she grew tall enough she also discovered the doorbell button on the outside would get her back in.

Nearly 14 years later and those bells still remain. Luna and Nova both passed away after long lives and now it’s Moxy who is the old-timer, pestered by Rex and Loki, who quickly learned the ‘bell =  yard’ system.  And in her geriatric state, Moxy tends to like an early morning visit to the yard… very early. Every night, somewhere between midnight and 3 a.m., I’m woken to the incessant ringing of the bells on the back door. I can yell for her to go lay down but she won’t listen, she’s deaf as a brick these days. So I get up, let her out, and sit checking my email while she does her business. Sometimes I start writing… and sometimes I’m still writing even after she comes in.

Not tonight though. I’m going back to sleep now.