‘I understand what it’s like to be unloved. Is it okay if I hold her in my arms when she gets to heaven?’ Mom recounts a heartfelt moment. A dying dog is comforted by an adopted son.

“Well, today didn’t go as planned, but it’s in the most trying of circumstances that we learn the most valuable lessons and feel the most grateful.”

Buffy was supposed to get her teeth cleaned and extracted today, but Dr Mac had a feeling she needed to look through some test work beforehand. Buffy’s kidney disease had progressed to where anaesthesia was not an option. We agreed as a family that the most compassionate and loving thing we could do was to let her go before she lost her desire to live and stopped eating and drinking.

I couldn’t imagine leaving my son Robbie out of this decision or not allowing him to participate in the entire process, so I went to pick him up from school right away. He informed me on the way there that he wanted to be the one to hold her in heaven. And, of course, I bestowed that distinction upon him. On the drive home, I told him how pleased I was with him for seeing the necessity of caring for elderly animals and assisting in their care.

That’s what he said…

(Please note that Robbie was adopted after years of horrible abuse and neglect in the foster care system.)

‘I know how it feels to not be loved or cared for, and I never want any of my animals to experience that.’ When they go to paradise, it’s only sad for us. It’s a joyous occasion for them. Thank you for your admiration. ‘Are you all OK, Mom?’

From the babes’ mouths.

Courtesy of Maria Henry Gay

To provide some further perspective, we adopt older dogs. Robbie is a huge fan of adopting older dogs. He’s well aware that the longer a child is in foster care, the less likely they will be adopted. ‘If all you people wanted was a kid, you wouldn’t have gotten me,’ he once said. He has a similar relationship with our ‘old people’ (as we refer to our senior pets). He’s also reminded me countless times that how much you love something doesn’t matter how long you’ve had it. ‘Well, you’ve only known me for two years, but you love me like you’ve known me forever,’ he responded when I inquired what he meant.

My youngster is, without a doubt, the coolest.”

Courtesy of Maria Henry Gay

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