Our New Dog, “Chilly”, Warms Our Hearts

By Sunday, February 7, 2010

Three weeks ago, my husband Paul and I headed to the animal shelter in Largo with intentions of adopting an adult cat. An hour later, we left the SPCA Tampa Bay with an 8-week old Labrador retriever mix puppy. Needless to say, our lives and our home have been turned upside down. How the heck did that happen? The year 2009 was a tough one for us. Paul and I said farewell to our beloved Buck, a 13- year old yellow Labrador mix—my canine soul mate and “the greatest dog ever”. That was in July. Then, suddenly, on November 30th, our awesome, 12-year old super-sized cat, Tank, died suddenly from what our veterinarian believes was an embolism. For the first time in 25 years, Paul and I found ourselves pet-less. (I’m not counting our donkeys and goats because despite their sweet, loving nature, they just don’t offer the same level of companionship dogs and cats do). Paul and I were overwhelmed by the silence and stillness in our home after Buck and Tank’s passing. We never realized how much pulse and ...

Remembering Buck, Greatest Dog Ever

By Sunday, August 30, 2009

Our home is sadly quiet these days. I never realized how many every day life sounds a dog contributed to a home. The foot-patter, gulping water from a dish, heavy dog sighs, barking at doorbells and the thumping of a happy tail on the floor—these are all sounds we never really noticed until now that they are gone. It’s taken me several weeks to steel my emotions enough to tackle this topic. Saying goodbye to a beloved pet is the most difficult, but inevitable right of passage a pet parent endures. It’s true. You do know when that time comes. On July 10th, we said goodbye to Buck, our beloved 13 ½ year-old yellow Labrador-chow mix. Although Buck was a tough-guy who embraced life, despite a myriad of painful orthopedic and emotional anxiety issues, we knew what he was trying to tell us when his sleeping time increased dramatically, and his precious face began to look tired and worn. Buck left us peacefully, in my arms while sitting shotgun in his golf cart after a long ride around the ...