Last night, we said goodbye to a dear friend. Missy, my childhood family dog, passed away. It wasn’t unexpected. She was a Great Pyrenees/Weimaraner mix, so her expected life span was anywhere from ten to fifteen. Missy was sixteen as of December 5, 2016. She was a fighter.
Over the last year or so, she began losing her abilities. By the end, my mom and dad were helping her with pretty much everything, except eating. She could usually be persuaded to eat, especially if it was something other than dog food. A couple months ago, my brother said that she would probably never die because she was just too stubborn. That was definitely her style.
I remember when she was a puppy, she could play for hours on end. She would be ready to fall over with exhaustion, but she would keep bringing you a tennis ball or her favorite octopus toy to keep throwing. My mom used to lay on the couch and throw things for her because inevitably Missy would have far more energy than my mom. Another time, she knocked down three dining room chairs while trying to greet someone at the door. Her growth spurt had not really occurred to her yet.
Missy was there for me, in her doggy way, during every hard, sad, or meaningful moment in my life. I’ve laid on the floor with her and cried; I’ve danced in the kitchen for joy while she looked at my nervously. She was truly the best friend I could have asked for.
Losing pets is always difficult. I wouldn’t trade those years with Missy for anything, though.