One of the most difficult acts that one can do is to make the decision to say goodbye to their pet. As many of you know, Taxi, our Labrador retriever, has been an integral part of our family for the past fourteen years. She was a sweet, loving and smart dog who brought joy and happiness to all five of us.
I like to say that she loved me the most, but she actually gave equal loving to all those around her. It seemed that she knew who needed her at any given point and would shower you with much-needed attention. If you were sick, she stayed by your side. If you were sad, she would lick your tears. And when you were happy, she would jump up to be in the middle of the joy.
Taxi was a champion swimmer, spending endless hours in our pool. She played soccer on our side lawn during our family matches and was surprisingly good at it. Elizabeth would play hide and go seek for hours in the house and she would do anything for a treat. She slept on the couch even though she wasn’t supposed to and her shedding was a problem. You could never leave the house without some of her hair on you and wearing dark colors could at times be quite embarrassing. She loved to eat (as most Labs do) and would wait earnestly for the microwave popcorn to be done popping.
What I’m trying to say is she was perfect!
And as much I as I knew that she could not stay forever, it was the most difficult decision to say goodbye. I had tried to put off the decision for many months, wanting to be certain that the time was right for her. She put up a good fight, never changing her loving manner even to the end. Her struggle to continue when she was having a bad day seemed personal, as if she knew that I wasn’t ready to have her go. I wish that I could have her with me forever.
Sometimes the loss of a loved one catches you by surprise. And in a moment, your world is changed. But sometimes when you know that it is coming, it can be equally as difficult. My days will always be quieter without Taxi, and my heart a bit broken.
I am grateful for having Taxi for the past fourteen years, and a compassionate thank you to her for being the perfect dog.
And for all of you who have had the perfect dog and had to say goodbye, I hope that your joyful memories will linger forever.
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