College of Veterinary Medicine Home Pet Loss Hotline

This is our super-dog Shelley. She really was beautiful, inside and out. My husband James and I adopted her when I was about two months pregnant; we had just finished our backyard to make it suitable for a dog and we could hardly wait. I picked five dogs to "interview" at the Humane Society in Bellevue, and Shelley was the first of the five. By the time I got to number four, I already knew she was the one. We were told she was nine years old when we adopted her and that she had arthritis in both hind legs. I didn't care.  

  She developed some naughty habits while in the shelter though. She'd only growl at me, never James, when I'd take away a toy, or at feeding time. But with practice and patience and positive reinforcement she learned quickly. We gave her a new knee and a loving home. In return she gave us so much more. We only had her a little over two and a half years. She was a totally nervous new mom when we brought Francesca home from the hospital but she eventually became a great big sister. She totally protected her and didn't mind when she crawled on her. She'd take food ever so gently when Francesca would dangle it in her hand for her. She started limping about three weeks before we put her down. We thought it was a possible sprain and waited for her to get better. She didn't. We took her to our vet who then sent us to a surgeon. It was bone cancer that had spread to her lungs. She was in horrible pain. Even with amputation and chemo we could not have saved her. It was an extremely difficult decision to make, something I still struggle with. If we could have cured her, we'd have done everything. It is amazing how much she enriched our lives in the short time we had her. I still miss her every day.

Nicole S.

Revised Jan. 16, 2007     |     Printer Friendly Version