Today Dallas the dog died.
I remember going to the pound to look at dogs as a kid. That is where we found dallas. In a room full of barking, jumping, out of control dogs, Dallas was calm and sweet. We loved her right then.
Dallas came from an abusive home, so adopting her into our family didn't exactly go off without a hitch. She was scared of everything, and everyone. But it made it that much more special to watch her ease into the safety of being a part of our family. And she really did become a member of our family, even to our mom who I still don't think knows for certain what gender our dog of 14 years was.
Dallas was a good dog. She was tender, obedient, and smarter than anything we could've expected. Even if she never could figure out how to play fetch...
She woke up every morning excited to greet me and Bri. She'd hop up on our beds and lay her head on our heads. She protected us form the imaginary ghosts in the basement. She was our hiking companion. She was our date for many a dateless Friday night.
But the day came when she couldn't hike anymore, she couldn't come down the stairs to the basement, and she couldn't hop up on any beds.
This morning she could barely even walk.
Growing old is slow. So slow you hardly notice it happening right before your eyes.
Having a puppy in the house made it impossible to ignore how every move Dallas made was a struggle, how every breath was labored.
14 years is a long life for a dog. It was time to let her go.
Now we hope she is happy, eating canine manna to her hearts content. We hope she is still protecting us from all the dark, scary basements. Mostly, we hope she is free. Free from the emotional and physical pains that she experienced in this life, and all the limitations of mortality.
Goodbye Dallas. We loved you as much as anyone could.