Wednesday, November 28, 2007


A few days ago, my dog passed away.

Annie, the bichon frise that our family had owned for over five years, was dying of cancer. My parents decided to put her down on Sunday afternoon.

Losing a pet, while not quite the same as losing a “regular” family member or friend, hits many of the same emotional chords. It’s because you’ve spent so much time with them over the years, and because whenever you’re home, they’re there too.

Having Annie around helped me through a lot of hard times growing up. We adopted her when I was still a sophomore in high school, so she saw a lot of changes in my life, just as a saw a lot of changes in her. Towards the end, she began losing her hair, and became a lot less active (which is saying a lot, considering she was never that energetic to begin with). Small things that we had always overlooked before, like the way she would drink water out of her bowl for maybe a minute at a time, became more noticeable once we realized she had serious health problems. Supposedly, things deteriorated a lot more rapidly after I left for Wales, and they weren’t able to keep her around long enough for me to return home.

I will miss Annie just as much as I miss the other people that I’ve lost in my life. When I go home, she won’t be there to jump up and down and bat her paws in the air in what soon became her signature gesture. She won’t be there to chase after flies in the air, or have Chloe (our other dog) jump on top of her as she waddles around the house.

After my mother told me the news about an hour ago, I went and dug up an old blog entry I wrote in the spring of last year, just after we lost our first dog, Maddy. In it, I wrote about how Annie had just gone through knee surgery at the time, and how much we knew she was hurting, both from the pain and from the loss of her companion. Now it’s another dog that’s feeling the loss, as Chloe is having to adjust to a world in which she really does “rule the roost.”
We knew Annie’s days were limited, and that we wouldn’t have her forever. It’s just tragic the way it ended – she was in a lot of pain. And yet, as my mother said, we can rest in knowing that she’s in a better place, wherever that other place may be. Annie helped me grow into the person I am today, and I’m glad we had her around for as long as we did.


girlalex said...

I'm sorry for your loss, Casey. Losing a pet is hard, but at least you got to have her around for as long as you did. Sending good thoughts your way.

MaryAnn said...

I'm so sorry, Casey. It's hard to be away from home when tough things happen.

Aunt Kathy said...

Dear Nephew,
I knew it would be hard for you to hear of Annie's passing. We're all so sad. She was special to me as well and I will miss her very much. I've caught up on your blogs.... so proud of you. You are experiencing life in Wales to the full. Thank you for continuing to share it with us. You continue in my thoughts and prayers. Much love,
Aunt Kathy