It is with a very heavy heart that we must report the devastating news that Sapphire passed away this past week. We are all heartbroken.
A few years ago, Sapphire was bitten by a black widow spider, and even though we had the vet out immediately, she developed cellulitis (a bacterial infection under the skin), and her leg swelled up overnight so badly that last January we were concerned we would have to put her down. The vet, however, gave her some steroids and antibiotics, and soon she seemed back to her normal self. This last October, however, her leg swelled up again for no apparent reason. We had the vet out twice to look at it, and she was on medication to manage the swelling. We were so happy to see that it was doing better and her leg looked normal again, and she seemed comfortable and was trotting around in the round pen.
Unfortunately, her leg swelled up again late last week for no apparent reason, but this time her entire system seemed to be shutting down. It was obvious that she was in a lot of pain, and we called the vet immediately. When she came out, however, she said that there wasn’t anything we could do for her besides help to relieve her from her pain.
Sapphire was around 33-35 years old, which is relatively old for a Thoroughbred. We really don’t know if the cellulitis had anything to do with her passing- it just might have been her time.
It was a lovely sunny afternoon here in Southern California, which I’m sure Sapphire appreciated as she hated the rain. We stood around Sapphire and told her that we loved her before she passed.
Sapphire had been with us for 13 years. When she came to us, she had been hit by a car, and it took us a year to rehabilitate her, but she was a fighter, and we were able to successfully adopt her out… twice. Both times she was obviously unhappy with her new owners, so we brought her back home- after the second time, we decided she was letting us know that she wanted to live with us, which was just fine with us!
Sapphire was very shut down emotionally when she came to us, so anytime that she tried to communicate with us, we tried to listen and respond so she would continue to engage with us. She bobbed her head to let us know that we were doing something wrong- first it was using the curry comb- she hated the curry comb. So we stopped using the curry comb. Then it became hard brushes, then plastic brushes, then the speed of being brushed- if we didn’t brush her in any way that she didn’t enjoy, she let us know immediately. She was never mean, she never tried to bite or kick anyone, but she definitely reveled in acting the part of the pampered princess.
Some women collect shoes or purses- Sapphire had brushes. She had many different brushes, all with varying levels of softness. We fed into her obsession by continuing to purchase softer and softer brushes for her.
We are going to miss Sapphire terribly. She was an indelible part of our lives for so long and her passing leaves an enormous hole in our lives. We are thankful we were able to spend the past 13 years of our life with her, and were able to be there with her to the very end.