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Dachshund Crisis

by Eddie Joubert  

We have five dachshunds, who came into our lives at a time when we really needed them, and they are our most precious possessions. Combined with three children, it makes for a very happy and cosy household with lots of laughter & playing.  

The little one of the litter, Imi, has always had a different character. She is the most loving, warm and cuddly animal that I have ever known. When you touch her, she is always warm and soft and you can always just feel the love radiating from her.

dachshund smiling 

Imi would wake up at night and start crying excitedly (same as when we come home from work), and then she will lick and kiss me and my wife for a while before she crawls in right between us while she makes these whimpering little sounds, to let us know she is happy that we are all there. When we drop the kids off at school she will cry and howl about them for at least five minutes after she can not see them any more and when we pick them up, the excitement knows no bounds. Visitors are always greeted with the biggest warmest reception imaginable.

One Sunday evening, while I was at church, I got a phone call from my family at home. Everybody was quite hysterical and I could immediately determine that something bad had happened. My wife told me that they were on their way to the night clinic with Imi. She said Imi had fallen down the stairs backward and they thought that she had broken her back. Now I work for the church full-time, and therefore, I can not just run out of the service, but I managed to get someone to stand in for me and I raced to the night clinic. I was crying all the way to the clinic and I was crying out to God at the top of my voice. The other people on the road must have thought that I had totally lost my mind.

When I arrived at the night clinic, the doctor had already done the x-rays and he told us to expect the worst. After my wife and I spent a half an hour with Imi, the doctor told us to fetch her in the morning and take her to a veterinary clinic of our choice. I grabbed my family and raced home. At home I took them all into the lounge and knelt in a circle. I then did something that I knew was not necessarily the right thing to do. I made a deal with God. I promised Him that if He would intervene, I would see to it that my whole family (who had been slowly drifting away from God) would re-commit their lives to Him, and serve Him vigorously again.  

The next morning, I fetched Imi and took her by ambulance to the Randridge clinic, where there is a doctor that specialises on this type of injury to dachshunds. I followed in my car. The staff was very efficient and immediately set my mind at peace that Imi was going to be OK. The hardest thing for me was to leave, as they suggested that I should not visit until it was time to fetch Imi, as it obviously upset her very much when she realised that I was going to leave.  

The doctor operated later that day and they phoned me in the afternoon to tell me that she was out of theatre and she had woken up from the anaesthetic. That whole week, we prayed together for Imi as a family. On Friday evening, they told me that I could fetch her the Saturday morning. When they brought her into the reception and she saw me, she started howling like a wolf and crying like a baby at the same time. She wet herself, me, and the worker that brought her in. We were taken into a consulting room to compose ourselves, because I donít know who cried the most, me or her. I had to take her with me to church, because we had a function on at church, and my wife was also working. She had hands laid on her for prayer that day, more times than I can remember, because all my friends had been praying for her the whole week, and they were overjoyed to see her. She still could not walk, so we had to carry her out to the lawn every couple of hours, but she had always been fond of being in the arms. We started putting her down and encouraging her to stand, until she could stand on her own. We then started encouraging her to walk small steps. The excitement reached fever pitch every time she made some kind of improvement. The first time she went out to the lawn and came back inside on her own we celebrated with biltong. She is the most precious little creature imaginable and the love that radiates from her can not be measured in any measure known to me. Imi is back to her old self, although she has lost some of her ability. She snarls at the other dogs if they overstep their boundaries, although she has never bitten, they pull their tails between their legs and back off very promptly.  

This whole experience has caused us to draw closer to God, because I keep on reminding my children that we can not wait for another crisis to focus on our relationship with God. We have made it a lifestyle to check each other, and ourselves, daily to make sure that we donít neglect our relationship with our Saviour. I pray daily for the protection of my pets, in advance, as I do with my wife and children. It has taught us to pray pro-actively instead of waiting for the crisis and then trying to negotiate our way out of it.

Most people look at me funny when they hear this story, but to me it is a testimony about the goodness of a God that cares about the minute details of our lives.

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