Arlene was found “stray”, a matted mess; the shelter told us that this 10-pound little girl was very old, blind and ataxic, wouldn’t eat at first and paced in circles but then perked up on the second day. We immediately drove over to bring her home and give her a few days of love and comfort before her end. We discovered that she could see enough to get around, staggered a lot but could make it out the dogdoor and back in as well as down a couple of steps. After 6 days she was eating everything in sight so we had her groomed – when the mats came off we found a huge “tumor” at the base of a long dead dewclaw. It turned out to be an abscessed cyst that we fixed up quickly, making it far easier for her to walk and ending much pain. Little Arlene spent 6 weeks with us, sleeping on the bed and spending evenings sharing her dad’s “lapful of dogs”; she was clearly used to being someone’s beloved pet. Her degenerating spine caught up with her, pain increased and she lost mobility rapidly after this “bonus” part of her life. We were glad that she surprised us with her determination and strength and could have this extra time with love around her.