On my 10th birthday I got the best present ever, a beagle puppy that needed a home. I named him Sandy. He went everywhere I did and was my best friend. Ten years later I was a young GI serving a tour in Vietnam. Getting letters from mom back home and hearing news about Sandy was something to live for. One day her letter informed me she and dad had to put Sandy to sleep. I cried my eyes out. Afterward I felt it was a little inappropriate to cry for a dog in the midst of being surrounded by immense suffering, pain and horrible loss all around me. But I will never forget the pain in my gut reading that letter and realizing I would never see Sandy again. I can still feel it to this day.


A loyal and loving pet is truly a gift from God. The message I took away from Mark’s book is that our pets are a gift on loan from God for a very short time and we need to enjoy and appreciate them as well as the people we have been blessed with in our lives while we still have time on this earth.


Matt from MO