This past Friday was an extremely difficult day. I had to make the decision to have my little buddy, Mugzee, euthanized. Any dog lover out there can probably empathize with me on this.

He’s the second – and last – of my two boys to go. First was Tazze, who had to be euthanized about 5 years ago at the age of 14. I’ve often wondered if there were such a thing as a doggie soul mate….if there was, Tazze was mine. He was there through some of the more difficult years of my life. He was unconditional love in my life when there was nothing or no one else around to show it. My little shadow. Tazze’s passing was difficult in the way you can imagine losing a “doggie soul mate” would be.

My sweet Tazze

My two boys were polar opposites. Where Tazze was my dog and mine alone, Mugzee was my little social butterfly. Tazze couldn’t care less about anyone in the world besides me, whereas Mugzee would welcome anyone with all the exuberance of his lifelong best friend. Tazze was constantly by my side – following me wherever I went; Mugzee was content to do his own thing though he was the best little cuddle bear I could ask for. They had completely different personalities but they both enriched my life in more ways than I can list here.

Late last week Mugzee, who was also 14, started going downhill and it was a quick decent. The silver lining, if there is one to be found, is that by Friday his discomfort was so obvious it made the decision a little easier to make. My sweet little boy.

So I’m on day two now of my new dog-free world and while I know there will be some good points, it’s been harder in ways I never thought about. Mainly, living alone has never felt so completely alone. I’ve found the nights are particularly difficult for some reason. Where Mugzee was there as a sort of buffer when Tazze passed, this time there’s no one. This is a completely new reality for me.

There’s no one to tuck in and tell good night. No one to greet me in the morning. No one to give hugs and kisses to. I brought lunch home and caught myself wondering if Mugzee was going to want me to share with him, then I realized there’s no one there to share with anymore. Yesterday I dropped my broom on the ground and turned to see if I’d scared my little buddy but he wasn’t there to hear it this time.

My house feels more like a jail right now – a constant reminder of how alone I am, and endless memories of both my boys. Their favorite places to sit. The half full container of Mighty Dog left over from Mugzee’s last bath just a few days ago. I was cooking last night and I felt him there, coming in the kitchen to nose around and hopefully find some scrap of food that had fallen. He wasn’t, of course, but I turned and looked because the feeling was just that strong.

I know that these feelings will fade. I’ll get used to being this alone. I’ll become accustomed to this new world. Right now the absence is so thick I can barely breathe at the worst times. The silence chokes me.

It’s hard right now, but I’m so thankful for the time I had with them.  The love they both gave me.  They were the first place I allowed myself to show my own love.  When the walls were up all around me, those two boys could get past them every single time.  They did more for me than I could ever have done for either of them.

I don’t know the specifics of Heaven, but I hope and pray that when I get there I’ll get my two boys back.  I don’t think it will be Heaven without them.

3 thoughts on “Mugzee

  1. I love dogs. And I love this poem. So, I send it to people who are going through a hard time with the loss of pets. Hang in there.
    We aren’t house proud.
    If were, we wouldn’t abide the scratches on the door frame, the holes in the screen, the darkened shine of worn spots on the chair.
    We would wince at the mottled carpet and fret at the hair clinging to our clothes.
    We don’t.
    If anything, we lovers of dogs are a tolerant lot, finding greater value in the unabashed affection of our friends than in immaculate sofas.
    Shoes can be replaced, but heroic retrievers are timeless.
    Without dogs, our houses are cold receptacles for things.
    Dogs make a fire warmer with their curled presence.
    They wake us, greet us, protect us, and ultimately carve a place in our hearts and our history.
    On reflection, our lives are often referenced in parts defined by the all-too-short lives of our dogs.

    Paul Fersen

  2. Pingback: Meet Oliver…. « Blogging Back to the Middle

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