Dear Mark; I was in a local B.J’s. this afternoon and my eyes fell on your “Sprite” book. I had a feeling I knew how the story would end and probably should NOT have picked it up. But, dog lover (and all animal lover) that I am, I did. I skimmed through your heart raising and heart rending biography of your best friend. The reason I felt I shouldn’t pick it up was that 3 years and 5 days ago, I had to do one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do; I had to have my beloved Suzi euthanized.
I had had her since she was just a wee bit of white fluffy fur in my hands. She was (I was told) a combination Husky and Retriever….NOT!!!! I had had a divorce and wanted a large dog..to help make me feel safer at living alone. I knew, without a doubt, that whatever kind of dog-or any pet that I’ve ever had or ever will have-it would be totally spoiled rotten. She was, at most, a combination Jack Russell, Wire-haired terrier, and w…a…y back in her background, some Golden Lab. Height wise she never got to my knees in the nearly 8 years she was MY Best Friend. I still am unable to think of her without crying from the empty spot in my heart. In my life, I’ve always had pets and in the backyard of my current home are at least 15 small grave-sites; I’ve lived in this house for almost 32 years. Does it really ever get easier to think of, dream about, see pictures of, be suddenly struck with a memory of..such a one as this??I’ve grieved over all my other “best friend” losses, but NEVER in my 65 years has the grief been this strong or lasted this long. I have pictures of her and will send one, but my computer is down at this time and I’m sending this to you from a local public library. I have sought counseling over several issues and continue to do so; Suzi is just one of those issues. Your ‘Spritey’ was a ‘one-in-a-million’ love for you and your family. As I sit here typing this to you, I hope no one is looking at me because the tears are flowing over the story of you and your family’s loss…and mine. Her face (your Sprite) is so expressive and full of love…….My heart goes out to all of you who loved and miss her.
We were blind-sided with Suzi. One day she was just not acting like herself (nothing specific..nothing I could say, “Dr. Goodman, she is/has/does…….’) I took her to her vet, and he couldn’t say what the problem was, but drew blood and sent it away. She had a rare, fast progressing form of cancer that has no known cause, treatment or cure. Three days later, she was partially paralyzed-not in any pain- and had to be euthanized. I don’t know if it would have been any better, for me, if it hadn’t all happened so quickly.
Because I am such an animal lover, I can so very easily feel the pain so evident in your book. I am so very glad you got Griffen and that he so perfectly and quickly blended in. God does send His ministering angels in the most unlikely forms, doesn’t He!!
Thank you for glancing at this and please accept my heartfelt thanks for your loving story.

Helene from MD