In 2005 we lost our family dog, Simba. She was a wolf/shepherd mix that found us when we were first married. She was our baby through all the miscarriages and then loved our babies as her own. She was one of a kind.
When she got out of our yard, we were devastated. There was no goodbye, no closure. There were many tears and lots of unanswered questions.
Then there was Maggie. We went to the pound looking for another dog and we found Poppy. She wasn't our first choice but when she saw the girls, she was immediately drawn to them and was so gentle with them. We knew then that she was our dog.
We adopted her and took her home.
She was horrible! She chewed everything. She actually ate the tires off of our barbeque. She knocked the kids down constantly and followed me around all.day.long. I did not like her. I begged Steven to take her back.
Thankfully he didn't. She calmed down and became an amazing dog. She was mostly obedient, protective, intelligent, loving, and sweet. She knew when I didn't feel well and stuck to my side to comfort me. She would help me up the stairs when my calcium was low and would check on me until I felt better.
On the downside, she could not pass up French bread. If it was on the counter she would eat it. Even when she could barely walk down the stairs she would find a way to get French bread off the counter. She loved French bread! She didn't bother any other food if it was out, but we dare not leave French bread anywhere unattended.
She was a special part of our family. When Bethany brought Beau home, Maggie took him in and taught him the rules of the house. He didn't really listen or learn but she tried! She played with him until she just couldn't any longer.
When Maggie got sick, Beau knew and would treat her so gently. He would check on her every chance he could and she would just lay there patiently until he was done. Towards the end, she couldn't eat and lot a lot of weight. She was in pain but tried to be the sweet dog she always was.
Her last vet visit at the vet in June, she kissed and snuggled like she was a puppy. It completely broke our hearts. She was comforting us even though she was in pain. The vet told us there was nothing that could be done and that it would be better for her if we made the hard choice. I knew it was coming but was devastated none the less. My girl was in too much pain.
As a family we said goodbye. We bought her ice cream and French bread and gave her a shower and took her on a car ride and on one final walk. She smiled the entire time!
We took her in to the clinic the next day and all of us were there with her until the end, loving on her. We wept as a family over our beloved Maggie and watched the light fade from her eyes. I am still crying over her.
As we left without our Maggie, we reflected on all the good times and precious memories. The pain is still fairly fresh and I slip up and call for her sometimes but it is getting better.
Yes, I know she was just a dog and not a person. But, when you love something with your whole heart it leaves a void when it is no longer there. If it doesn't did you really love it?
Someday we will get another dog and start the process all over again; but for now we are loving on Beau and settling in to life without Maggie.