There is no love quite like the love you can get from your dog. She will come running up to you and cover you with kisses when you get home from work. She’ll make you feel loved and special, as though you are the greatest and most important being who ever existed in the universe. I have two ex wives. Neither of them ever came close to my dog, Melanie, for making me feel loved. On the other hand, neither of them ever pooped on my floor, either, so perhaps it evens out.
Your dog will lie with her head in your lap or on your chest. She will be by your side through the worst times. She can provide protection. But, more than any of this, she simply works her way into your heart in ways no human can. She’ll never lie to you. She’ll never tell the secrets you share with her. Melanie doesn’t mind in the least that I am old, broken, and not particularly attractive. She loves Me, not my body. I’ve never known a woman about whom I could honestly say that. She makes me smile, and laugh, and sing. (I sing to Melanie for Breakfast and at Bedtime. Fortunately, she can’t tell that I suck.) A dog will show you Joy you never knew was possible. And, finally, she will break your heart.
Melanie is a part of my routine. The day will come, I know, when I don’t get to sing The Breakfast Song to her anymore. Her head won’t be on my lap when I’m sad. I won’t see her tail wagging joyously simply because she sees me. And my world will be just a little emptier.
There are those who will tell you, “It’s only a dog; get over it.” These people are to be ignored. They don’t understand the depths of your feelings. She was there all the time. She relied on you for her survival, and you relied on her for the only feeling of being Completely Loved that you will ever really have. It doesn’t need to be rational. Love rarely is.
What do you have left? You have your memories of the good times you had. You can recall her highs, her lows, her joys, her woes, and the moments you shared with her. You have the look in her eyes that told you how she was feeling. You have, still, and always, the love she gave to you without expecting anything in return. You have a Badge of Honor because you can say, “I have been loved by a dog.”
And when your dog is gone, those who love you will help you through the loss. I probably don’t know you, but if you have lost your dog, you are worthy of love. I hope these words might have helped to fill in just a little part of the massive hole your dog’s departure has left in your heart.