I am a very lucky man – I’ve got an amazing wife and am the father to three wonderful kids. Lylli was born on Halloween in 2008, Gracie was born November 2010 and although she only lived for 17 months, she will remain as much a part of this family as the rest of us, and Mickey Gray, our first son, was born in June of 2012. I’m not going to say that life has gone exactly as I would have wanted, but it is a good life and I am determined to make the best of it.

This blog is an attempt to document my quest to become a dad that my family can be proud of.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

RIP Buck

I lost my best friend yesterday.
Every morning my wife gets out of bed before I do. For years, this gave my dog, Buck, the opportunity to sneak up and lay next to me for awhile. That did not happen today and will never happen again. Yesterday, I had to make the decision for Buck to never wake up from his exploratory surgery. We were hoping to find a toy or something to explain why his plumbing stopped working suddenly. His bowels were consumed with Cancer and up until a week ago, he had shown no signs at all. Buck had been my dog since November of 2000 and would have been 10 this year. I rescued him when he was 4 weeks old. He was a very handsome yellow lab/chesapeke mix with a large frame and broad chest - A beautiful dog. Without disrespecting anybody that I've lost in my life, losing Buck is the hardest loss that I've ever had to deal with. Its crazy - no funeral - no nothing -- I'm supposed to walk into the vet clinic with him and out with his collar and leash. I want to be left alone, but at the same time, out of respect for him, I want a big deal to be made of his death.  Some might say, he was just a dog, but right now especially, to me he was so much more.  I guess this is my way to passively deal with this. He helped me through some really tough times. For awhile it was just he and I. He was my family and he unconditionally loved me even in those times in my life where I didn't deserve it. He was my best friend. As I held him alone in the surgery room after the vet gave him that fatal syringe full of pink fluid, I cried and said to him that I hope I did him justice. I regret a few things. Buck was not the squeaky wheel. I have a wife and 17 month old daughter, a collie X with Cerebellar Hypoplasia (very high maintenance), a beagle X with an attitude - currently wearing an E-collar for a puncture she received in her inner leg, a rescued ex-bait dog pit bull with rotting teeth, and a 200 + lb mastiff. In our "pack", it was easy to not give as much attention to Buck because he was such a good dog. He let the other high maintenance crew, eat first, push their way in for affection, etc. - he never had accidents or destroyed anything, and would never hurt anything. I've seen puppies chew on his ears and Lylli poke him in the eyes while saying "Buck's Eyes". I don't know whether to keep typing and turn this into cliche like Marley and Me memoire or to stop - so I guess I'll stop. But I do want to say - I understand that I am writing this for myself in an attempt to deal with this loss, but if, by chance anybody does read this -- if you have a dog -- remember as you get consumed with the rest of your busy life -- that while you go to work and shuttle the kids around racing from here to there to meet all of your obligations, that to the dog that you are ignoring to do all of this --- you are its life! So, please remember that.
Goodbye Buck - I Miss you and will see you again someday

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