It is one week ago this morning since I lied on the floor of our entryway beside our 15 yr old handsome Cocker Spaniel Wrigley. He was able to tell me he needed to go out, about 5:30 am which was earlier that usual . He got up and licked my face but he could not make it down the stairs, stopping at the top. I carried him down and to the back yard. He walked slowly to the grass like a good boy and tried to go potty but nothing would come out. I carried him up the patio stairs and set him on the floor. My husband was watching. Wrigley looked back at me, for 15 yrs he would bark for a treat at this point and I would say " have I ever forgotten to give you a treat"? and I'd throw one for him to catch in his mouth. Today he looked up at me and walked to the tile floor by the front door and lied down shaking as he'd done all the day and night before. I could not leave him, I always promised him he would have a beautiful life and when that was no longer possible, I would let him go. He was our first child, we got him 6 weeks after we were married, I was not allowed to have pets growing up and my husband had had a Cocker as a single man . This dog passed at 10yrs old and he now after 3 years felt ready to have another. Wrigley was 8 weeks old and loved to be touched, we took him to our city apartment and treated him like the gift that he was. In his entire 15 yrs, he was never boarded at a kennel or doggie daycare. When we did leave him to travel, he stayed with a friend or family. My husband works at home and I work part time so Wrigley was rarely at home alone for long stretches. He knew that he was our pride and joy. When he was two years old, we had our daughter and I mourned that Wrigley was no longer our only little love. Was that so wrong? I cried as I brought her in to the house and I bent down so he could smell her. It took him 5yrs to stop ignoring her. Just about the time it took for her to realize that was doing so. When my daughter was colicky, Wrigley laid next to me as I petted him and tried to console her, for 4 months. Over the years, she grew and became a sister to him, caring for him and cuddling with him even using him as an excuse to avoid her homework. He had some health scares, eating a package of sugar free gum, a bag of gummy bears and a bag of chocolate. But he was strong and handled the stomach pumping at the expensive Emergency Vet each time. I knew I would not lose him at those times. When we moved to the suburbs, we had to teach him to go in the back yard unleashed to do his business! We continued for 9 more years with the same Groomer in the city now 40 miles away as he knew Wrigley so well. We took him by car several times a year to see my family in Minneapolis and he would smile sitting on my lap the whole 8 hour ride, recognizing my mom's neighborhood as we arrived. People would come over and ask to pet him and would always say how beautiful he was. I felt proud and blessed . Wrigley was so affectionate and handsome and communicative, different barks for different things. He followed me constantly at my side throughout the house, not true for my husband or daughter. As soon as my daughter went to bed, Wrigley would jump on the bed with me as it was now our time when he would have my full attention. My husband was in his home office, rarely having these times. When I got out of the shower, Wrigley would prance over to lick my legs dry. I know, this sounds odd but he was grooming me, showing his love and I accepted it. I thought he was just slowing down a bit over this past Spring, I watched his moves and habits like a hawk ! He was happy but became very finicky about food and had trouble going potty in the yard and cuddled a bit less. I must have been in denial not to put these things together. Finally he did not want to take his evening walk to I asked my husband to take him to the Vet the next day just to check everything out. There was a different Vet filling in, he examined my boy and told my husband that Wrigley had a large liver mass that there was nothing we could do but talk as a family about putting him down. My husband insisted on pain meds and an antibiotic and then called me at work. I lost it, crying so hard because I knew I had to keep my promise to my boy. We saw our regular Vet the next afternoon. He was much more compassionate, we got an x-ray and saw the mass. He suggested we take Wrigley home with the pain meds and just watch him and stay in touch. I was so relieved. So we took him to the Groomer the next day as schedule where he did well. My daughter and I went to her favorite boy band's concert as we had tickets for over a year. Then that second morning after the Vet told us to watch him, he took a turn. He was lethargic, barely able to look up at us. He would not eat anything! I boiled chicken, took out the peanut butter. He would look away. He even threw up his water that we'd brought upstairs for him. I began to mourn him then, calling my mom and my best friend sobbing through out the day and all night. My husband was not ready, thinking maybe it was just a virus and not the mass that was making him so sick. It was long enough for me, with the mass and his age and his otherwise great quality of life I knew I had to let him go in peace as he deserved. He was my constant luvie, silly beautiful boy who was now suffering. My husband agreed with in a day and we took him to the Vet to be euthanized. We saw a lovely park/farmland area on our way and we let him out to walk a bit and lay in the grass. My daughter stayed in the car, my husband took pictures and I sat beside Wrigley petting him and telling him he was such a good boy. The staff at the Vet's office was compassionate , my husband and daughter held Wrigley and said there good byes and left the room. I held him in my arms whispering to him and rubbing his ears as they Vet gave the final injection talking about the love of a pet the whole time. Once Wrigley's spirit was gone, I put him on the Vet's table and gave one last kiss to his body. Then I left. We all drove home crying. Now we are the ones suffering. My daughter can't even talk about it. My husband wants me to stop talking about it. I can't! I call friends and family throughout each day, crying in pain. It is worst early in the am or late at night when I do not want to bother them. The pain is always there and then just wells up to an overwhelming level at some points. The house is quiet, there is no face licking or collar shaking or demands for treats. No big brown eyes streaming love at me, no long buff fur to pet or brush. I am so lonely and I feel alone in my grief. I am having trouble sleeping and when I do wake up after a few hours the pain, angry and despair are with me. I miss my baby boy!! He was not a dog or a pet to me. He was me son and I want him back young and strong for the rest of my life. Why do dogs have to die so soon? I now understand how strong the love between an animal and a human can be. I am so lucky to have finally experienced it, can I do it again? I hope so. It is just too painful right now. Thank you for listening, it is too early to call a friend and I had to retell what happened. I know that you all understand for sure!