It is with great sadness that my wife Candy and I are announcing a loss in our family. Our dog Pal (a.k.a. “Woofy") had to be put down yesterday after losing his battle with Cushing’s disease and arthritis. He’s blessed Candy's family for 15 long years, the last seven I got to be a part of. He came into my life when I met the wonderful and special lady who was to become my wife. Candy said it was a “package deal”. At some point along the way, he officially became “my" dog.
Candy also said before we met, that, “whoever Pal warms up to will be the man for me”. I am humbled and very honored to have been that person. Although I cannot escape the feeling of a hole missing from my heart right now, I know that in time it will get better. I’m not religious, so I don’t know if he has crossed the rainbow bridge to be with other pets and their owners (he probably slid over the bridge if it had laminate flooring on it!). I do know, however, that he is no longer in discomfort, or living a life that has slowly robbed him of his spark, passion, strength and character in the last year or so.
Putting Pal down doesn’t leave us with any regrets as far as ‘was it too early’ or ‘was it too late’. We know it was the right decision at the right time. Personally, it will be the regrets of having not spent enough time with him, or being mad at him for trivial things, that may tear at me.
I was fortunate to have had some down time this week to spend with him, even though it was incredibly painful and depressing knowing what was going to happen Friday evening. Part of me feIt as though he was gone a week earlier. I held and hugged him every chance I got, and feel like I’ve cried enough in the last few days to top off his water bowl.
Friday morning, as I was getting ready to leave for work, I saw Pal and Candy sleeping. As I was leaving the room, I just stopped to cherish the moment, as it was one of those “lasts”. I wanted time to stop. I had an hour or so with him before I had to take him on our last car ride together. As Candy and I walked out of his vet’s office with an empty collar, a chapter of our lives ended and a new started. Now comes the time to celebrate his life and move forward with ours.
I have put together a short movie showing some great photos we have enjoyed through the years. I think it’s a wonderful tribute to his life. You can view it here:
Candy and I love you very much Pal, and thank you for the many years of memories, special moments, companionship, and amazing unconditional love you have filled our lives with. I'm so glad and fortunate that our paths crossed in this life. No matter how bad or stressful of a day we had at work, having you there to greet us quickly reminded us that we were.... “home”. You were truly the son I never had, and you have a permanent place in both our hearts.
Rest in peace.