My baby girl Cookie,

True to my word, I showed up to my 2nd shift to volunteer at our local no kill shelter. I spent yesterday morning hours cleaning out the dog kennels and helping out kitten friends with their litter boxes.

My heart did a flutter when I saw a shih tzu. A girl as well but black and white. As much as I liked her, she didn't have your eyes. You can never be replaced, but I hope one day I will find one with your eyes. It is only then that I think I can open up my heart again. When I looked into your eyes, I didn't see a dog. I saw a soul that trusted me and loved me for all that I am and that all I offered.

I also spent some time organizing the spare pet beds at the shelter. I haven't touched a pet bed in so long.  All your beds at home are still there.  And the last bed you slept on is still in the ziploc. I haven't opened the ziploc in almost a week to smell your scent.  I was happy to give back at the shelter but touching all those spare new or gently used pet beds broke my heart.

Two dogs at the shelter licked my hand yesterday. I forgot how warm and gentle and soft a dog's kiss can be.  How I miss and long for your sweet pure kisses.

I almost forgot how soft your hair was. I took the clipping of your hair out of the ziploc for the first time the other night and just smelled it and gently stroked it. I miss our nightly combings and weekly baths. It was our special time together.  I miss how you fell asleep in my arms while grooming or how you fell asleep in the warm tub under the running water.

I liked being at the shelter before it opened to the public. It was quiet and comforting. I got to be alone with my thoughts and focused on cleaning, spending time with the animals and thinking of you and grieving still.

I still look through your photo albums. I still can't believe how lucky I am to fulfill my childhood wish of wanting a dog and how lucky that you were my first dog.  And that you were my heart dog and always will be. I just hope that I was and always will be your heart mom. Love your mama and best friend, Kim.

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So sorry for your loss of Cookie Kim I too had a shih Tzu Ozzie he passed away 5 days ago he too was my childhood wish and my first dog for 14 years I hope you can find peace and heal your heart as I am trying my best to do take care Amy
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Dear Amy,

I'm so sorry about Ozzie. It is so hard as all dogs are special but the shih tzus and our shih tzus seem so much more extra special. May the memories of our babies stay in our hearts and minds forever.  Take care, Kim.
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