My Mom has to put her beloved little Maltese named Buddy to sleep today. She is 80 and widowed three years ago after the passing of her husband of 55 1/2 years. Buddy was a wonderful little dog she rescued about 8 years ago when his then owner wanted to put him down because she found him to be inconvenient (she was a biker chick).

My Mom took Buddy home and the love and care she showed him resulted in a mutual lovefest. He loved her and she loved him unconditionally. If she left the room, he wouldn’t stay there for more than 15 seconds before he’d get up and follow her.

Buddy was incredibly affectionate and devoted and like all Maltese wanted nothing more than to please those he loved. He had a wonderful smile and was playful and generous with his affection. He loved to be held and talked to and he was constantly “introducing himself” to houseguests and my mother’s friends.

Buddy was devoted to my mother and whenever I visited, I understood their special bond because I loved him too.

Like Sprite, Buddy was older than we originally thought but he was a beloved companion for my Mom and Dad (while he was alive) and my brother Bill and I both came to love him, too.

As my Mom faces this new loss she unfortunately has decided not to have any more pets because she does not want to endure another loss like the one she faces today with her beloved Buddy.

My Mom lives in Redmond, WA and my brotehr will be taking her and Buddy to the vet to end his suffering. I admire my brother’s devotion to our Mother as he helps her through what will be the next really tough day after losing my Dad.

I am now very glad that I took so many photos of Buddy because she will have them to remind her of how wonderful and lively he was when he came into her life when she rescued him.

Mark, you are absolutely right, our pets become members of our families and when they leave us, they are sorely missed. I write this missive from NYC and wish I could be with my Mom as she deals with this loss. Even 3,000 miles away, I too have started grieving because he was such a wonderful, loving friend and companion for my Mom.

Thank you for providing all of us who love animals this space.

Paul from NJ