On saying goodbye to a beloved dog

We said goodbye this morning to our dear, beloved Maggie, a chocolate Lab mix who has been part of our lives for nearly 11 years. We often said she’s the perfect dog and we’ll likely never have another better.

She was an amazing running companion. She was kind and sweet. Her greatest fault was that she was sometimes anxious and didn’t like thunderstorms.

She made me better. She taught me that “love always wins” and that there’s always hope of another treat, another swim, the next great thing that life will offer that is most often a simple thing.

We let these creatures into our house and they find ways into our hearts. Mourning the loss of a pet is a universal experience, though mourning the loss of a specific animal is often limited to a few folks.

We take them in, knowing we are supposed to outlive them and ignoring that we may mourn their loss someday.

We shower them with love and affection, knowing they are far better at doing that than we are.

But they are companions. They are faithful. They are kind. They remind us on a daily basis of the value of being those things.

I want to remember her smiling eyes, her ‘body wags’, her up-dog and down-dog yoga stretches, her love of swimming, and how she settled into my lap and sighed happily.

Thanks, Maggie. For all that and more. We’ll miss you terribly. All dogs go to heaven, right?

Marshall King