We said a last good-bye to our elderly beagle, Sam, today. He’d gone blind and mostly deaf, and was failing in other ways. So we took him to the vet to release him from his body. I believe it was the right thing to do, but it’s so hard. Sam had been with us for about eight years. We guessed he was six or seven when we took him in from a family that couldn’t keep him, but they had taken him in as a stray, so nobody knew his real age or his past.
He was a big-hearted little guy, though he was also the most trying dog to live with we’ve ever owned—obsessed with food and prone to accidents in the house. But we loved him anyway. We still remember how he sprang to our cat’s defense when a visiting husky went after her: Sam jumped right into the breach and raised holy hell until we got there to intervene. And when Moonlight (the cat) and Hermione (our boxer) got into a tiff over a fallen piece of cold broccoli on the floor, it was Sam who swooped in and gulped it down before either of them could react. And when our kids were first learning piano, Sam and Hermione formed a wonderful Ahhh-ooohhh! chorus.
Sam’s on the rainbow bridge now, but here he is with his buddies during easier times.