I had to let my best friend Gus go on April 6th. It was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. He was 15 years old, and we had 12 wonderful years together. I adopted Gus from the pound when he was three. His previous owners said that he had bitten one of the kids, but I think it was more that he played rough as most big dogs will, and he shed tons of hair on a daily basis. He had been in the pound for 6 months – nobody wanted him – and had one week left. The dog walkers loved him, and they kept him so long because he was such a great dog. We looked at each other and it was love at first sight. I never looked back. What a wonderful dog! Smart, playful and trusting doesn’t come close to describing his personality. We all have those rotten days; rotten weather, rotten commute, rotten people, rotten day at the office, rotten ride home…. and there he would be, the big smile on his face, the “propeller” tail going, the kisses and hugs, always happy to see me. His last six months were difficult. He had bad hips, decided he wasn’t eating dog food ever again, had a rough time going up the stairs, making it outdoors or through the night. I didn’t mind making him special meals twice a day, helping him on the stairs or carrying him when he was having a particularly bad day. I didn’t mind washing the floors every day, bathing him in the morning when he had a bad night – it was all part of my pay-back and respect for what he kept giving. It reached a point when he started to stagger around the yard. His back legs could no longer support him. I knew in my heart that I had to give him up and let him go with the little dignity he had left. My head said it was time but my heart was breaking. It has been my absolute privilege that he shared his life with me. There was such love, trust and companionship. There will never be another Gus. I know he’s free of pain now, and waiting for me to join him. Special thanks to Dr. Maija and Cathy for everything they did for him.
God bless you Gussy, forever in our hearts.
Our thanks to Robert Ramsay and James Pelrine for this memorial tribute.