This is the story of my parents Dachshund Heidi. She is 10 years old. When my Dad got her for my Mom she was so little that she fit in the palm of your hand. When she got older, she would divide her time between my parents equally. Then in 2005 my Dad was diagnosed with Liver problems. My Dad is a proud US Marine Veteran. In Vietnam he was awarded the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart. My Dad was always so strong like a rock and it was so hard to watch him go down hill and Heidi was right there to comfort him and watch over him. There where a few days my Dad was so weak that he would fall and Heidi would bark and run to get one of us to help. She became a Dad’s little nurse.

In 2007, my Dad’s Kidneys failed. Now we were waiting on a Liver and Kidney Transplant. Heidi now 7 would spend all day with my Dad either in bed with my Dad or sit next to him on the sofa. At night was my Mom’s time she sat with her until it was time to go to bed. Heidi always makes sure she spent time with both of them. I moved back home to help with my Dad and to give my Mom time to relax. Heidi then started to spend time with me. She has such a big heart in her little body.

In May 2008, My Dad received his transplant. For three months after the transplant my Dad could not touch or hold her. Heidi and Dad did not like this one bit, but she found a way to keep in eye on him. My Dad started to get better and they would go outside on nice days and Heidi would sat right there to watch over him and make sure he was ok. Always walking behind him when he would go anywhere in the house. Still at night was my Mom’s time.

September 27, 2009, My Dad, My hero passed away. He was in the hospital at the time. He spent so much time in the hospital that I found a stuffed Dachshund so he could have Heidi with him there. A nurse made a collar with an ID bracelet. My Dad was buried in his Marine uniform with the stuffed Heidi beside him. The Reserve Marine Unit from San Antonio came and played TAPS and folded the flag graveside. During this whole time Heidi knew something was wrong. Dad was not home so, she sat by the front door waiting for him to come home. There where times we could not find her, she would be laying on my Dad’s bed sleeping or would lay on the sofa in my Dad’s spot. A few months ago Mom got a new sofa, when we went to move the sofa Heidi would not get off the sofa. We would lift her off and jump back on the sofa. When we finally got the sofa out of the house she was howling like a Bloodhound. Mom and I started to cry.

I have always heard about pets that would take care of their humans never saw it in person until Heidi became part of our family. She was the best nurse for my Dad. I know if it was not Heidi my Dad would have lasted as long as he did.

– Tyson from Houston, TX