There Were a Lot of Tears Today

Fifteen years of a perfect companionship ended today. When he first came home he would fit in the palm of one of my hands. Soft white fur with a black nose made it a joy to gaze upon him. On many days he would take either my wife or I, and sometimes both, on a walk. He never got over 20 1/2 pounds but today he only weighed 15 1/2 as in the last month he was rapidly losing weight. One month ago he was in the hospital for six days and it seemed that he might get better. But he did for only a few weeks and again started to deteriorate. The last three days we had to take him to a vet for an evaluation. Monday evening we couldn't make up our minds even though we knew that we probably should have. But Tuesday again, then Wednesday. After watching him and trying to take care of him with medication, pain pills and eye drops nothing seemed to work in his favor. For the last three days he followed either my wife or I everywhere we went in the house. It seemed that he was trying to say, why aren't you helping me, am I invisible to you? As much as we wanted to keep him at least until Christmas, and forever, so he could open the toy that I had bought for him. He used to like to open his own present on Christmas day. So excited he was. My wife was very brave today for making the decision that was best for him. I'm glad and maybe I was a little selfish to not make the decision on Monday night as we had him for an additional two days. But then, today, it was time. His name was Max.

A Dog's Prayer

Treat me kindly, my beloved master, for no heart in all the world is more grateful for kindness than the loving heart of me.
Do not break my spirit with a stick, for though I should lick your hand between the blows, your patience and understanding will more quickly teach me the things you would have me do.
Speak to me often, for your voice is the world's sweetest music, as you must know by the fierce wagging of my tail when your footstep falls upon my waiting ear.
When it is cold and wet, please take me inside... for I am now a domesticated animal, no longer used to bitter elements... and I ask no greater glory than the privilege of sitting at your feet beside the hearth... though had you no home, I would rather follow you through ice and snow than rest upon the softest pillow in the warmest home in all the land... for you are my god... and I am your devoted worshiper.
Keep my pan filled with fresh water, for although I should not reproach you were it dry, I cannot tell you when I suffer thirst. Feed me clean food, that I may stay well, to romp and play and do your bidding, to walk by your side, and stand ready, willing and able to protect you with my life, should your life be in danger.
And, beloved master, should the Great Master see fit to deprive me of my health or sight, do not turn me away from you. Rather hold me gently in your arms as skilled hands grant me the merciful boon of eternal rest...and I will leave you knowing with the last breath I drew, my fate was ever safest in your hands.
--Beth Norman Harris


Anonymous said...

That is a nice tribute. We will miss Max, too.

Anonymous said...


I've been there too. That part of having animals sucks. It's still worth it though. I feel led to encourage you to get another. Not a replacement, (impossible) but another. They help to keep you here in the here and now... We had to put down our retriever a few years back. Thinking about that hurts like yesterday, but we have two others that keep us laughing today.

Dogs make life better.

Never stop.


Nate said...

Thank you for the kind words. They always help from another who has gone through it also. We're getting another Westie that was born two weeks ago. We can go visit the little guy in two weeks.

Anonymous said...

Now look what you've done. You rapscallion, you've made the ol' chief cry!

Nate said...

We're picking up the puppy on Friday.

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