Cracker - My best friend

by Joy
(Cincinnati)

I got my sweet Maltese puppy back in 1999. He lived with me and loved me for every minute of his 16 long years. Cracker had the best personality. He insisted on luxury and I did my best to deliver. He was my first baby, we grew up together through my twenties and thirties. I struggled through infertility and for years my husband and I where unable to have kids. Cracker was there with me for every shot, every treatment and when a miracle happened and I got pregnant he was there for every day of bed rest.

He was always so active and running around playing, over the past couple of years that started to be less and less. He was getting older after all. In the past 6 months he had really started to lose weight. About a month ago he started to have accidents. I talked myself into the fact that he was just getting older. This past weekend I could no longer live in that denial. He started to walk funny, unstable almost. It continued to get so bad to the point that he could not stand by Monday. I called into work and just laid holding him and stroking his fur for 7 hours waiting on his vet appointment. My husband and I knew it was time, he didn't even have the strength to lift his little head off my chest. I held him while he took his last breath and I wept over his body after he was gone.

I am having him cremated and I know where I will bury his ashes in the yard. I guess I just didn't realize how much pain I would be in. He was 16 years old, it had to happen sometime. All I can focus on are those last horrible moments and not the 16 years of joy he brought my life. How do you start to heal and erase that terrible moment from your mind?

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