Todd and I gave our dog Sam a voice. You have to imagine this story being told by Sam in his voice. It sounded a little like Barney…
I woke up this morning with a cold. Have you ever heard a dog sneeze all day long? Well, I sneezed all day long. That was a new experience. I could tell Mom was worried about me because she stayed close by. Usually, she leaves for work but today she stayed home. She wasn’t feeling good either. I hate to say it, but I was glad about that. I really wanted her around today. I heard her call Dr. Marheine and schedule an appointment for me to go and see her at 6:30 pm. I knew what that meant. I was really relieved. I wished I could have told Mom that.
She fed me breakfast like she always does, I had to share some with Fannie. I’m used to that now, but honestly, I never was big on it. Mom gave most of it to me, so that was good. Then we sat together in the living room. I had the big couch, Fannie slept behind the couch, and Mom sat on the little couch. Every time I woke up she waved at me. It sure made me feel good. She always knows how to make me feel good. Dad too. But there’s something about Moms.
Anyway, we got through the day, Mom worked on her computer and phone, I snoozed, so did Fannie. I noticed Mary stayed close by too. Dad came home for lunch and took me out. I was never big on being carried around either, but I was sure happy today for his strong arms. I was too tired to walk. Maybe from all the sneezing. I don’t know. I just knew it was time for my trip. Mom laid down beside me and talked to me about it. We had a good time laying on pillows and looking at each other. A couple times I sneezed on her. She didn’t seem to mind.
If I could talk, I would have reminded her not to worry about making the decision she did. Dr. Marheine always said, “We do all we can to make them comfortable, but the time comes….” I knew the time had come, and so did Mom. Still, she was so sad I didn’t know what to do. So I just rolled over where I couldn’t see her waving at me and took a long nap. Before I knew it Dad came home.
See…us dogs understand something that maybe some other animals don’t. God gave humans authority over every living thing. That’s a big responsibility. But it also means they have to trust their instincts. We know you love us and sometimes loving means letting go.
We went for my last ride to the lakefront. I was happy to just lie in Mom’s lap. Mom told me the story about when we were walking on the beach one day, and I saw a parasailer. I didn’t like it. I took off. Stopped traffic and stuff. She couldn’t catch me, but I found my way home. Anyway. That was a fun day. Not really. I never wanted to walk on the lakefront again. I preferred to drive by with my head out the car window. That’s life.
And you might think by now that this story is about my death. That’s not true. You have to understand something. Animals have souls just like humans. When I heard Mom say, “Run to Bill, Sam!” That’s just what I did! I always loved her dad Bill. We were real buddies. We still are!
So I’ll be seeing you on the other side of Jordan, as they say. Thanks for loving me. I love you too. Tag, you’re it. Keep passing it on!
August 12, 2003 – January 14, 2019