Sunday, March 12, 2017

On dogs, and grieving

A blogger friend of mine recently posted that her 4-legged soul mate had to be put down this week.  She didn't elaborate the why behind such a painful decision, but those of us who love our dogs (or cats, etc) have had to face this reality before, or we will one day, probably sooner than we would like.

She lamented that of all the wonderful things she had learned from her dog, she had never learned to say Goodbye.  And that struck me.  It brought back sad memories of my last day with Charlie, and those damned onion-cutting ninjas struck, and it got mighty dusty in here.

It was then that I realized dogs can't tell you Goodbye, until their final moments.  It is their nature that way.  It is their final gift to us.  That's how it is, with dogs.  Each one must teach you their own Goodbye, for no two are alike.

But it may not be their most important gift.

From the dogs in my life who have crossed the Bridge, I learned important things. 

From Napoleon, my childhood dachshund I learned to care for and to love dogs.
Charlie, my first Ridgeback, taught me to let go.
Cody taught me dignity in suffering and in death.
Ranger taught me to live every day to the full, for we never know when Goodbye comes. For sometimes it comes far too soon.


  1. I'm so sorry for your friend. But what you've written was absolutely lovely! I've had several dogs over the years too. And only one ever passed from a "natural" death without help from the vet. My current pup is 14 so he's not young, but in the past I always waited much too long before making the call. Luckily, he doesn't seem like he's planning on going any where soon.

  2. You make a good point. We do learn life lessons from our fur friends that live on in their memories.


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