I have many stories, at my age, of dogs loved and lost. But my Sadie is the reason I bought your book. I adopted Sadie, a Min-Pin, in 2000. My son had bought a puppy from the breeder and when he picked up the pup, the owner told him she and her husband were splitting up, so they had to get rid of all the dogs. She told him Sadie was 3 years old. She wasn’t, she was 5-6 by this time. My son offered her to me and into my life walked the most amazing little dog I’ve ever had. I took her right to the veterinarian and had her teeth cleaned, the works. She had a small heart murmur at this time. I had her spayed, too. Five years later, she had her teeth cleaned again. Meanwhile, it took about 3 months for her to stop looking for her previous family. One day, I noticed her eyes seemed to be bloating. Indeed they were. She went to the eye specialist on Long Island, the best in the country. He pronounced auto-immune disease of the eyes and prescribed daily eye-drops and salve, for the rest of her life. As soon as we began treatment, she realized it was helping. She would turn her head from side to side so I could put the drops into each eye. She kept me on schedule with her medicines. Then, in 2005, about 3 days after her regular heartworm medication, although I didn’t connect the two at the time, she became weak, dizzy, disoriented, and started vomiting terribly. For a 12 lb dog, she lost 4 lbs in 2 days. She was so weak I thought she was going to have to be put down. I couldn’t face it. The vet told me if she could only keep something down, anything, she could make it.

I fed Sadie Pedialyte and Gerber’s baby food, on my finger, until she kept a mouthful down. She lived through it. Now, in 2006 I moved to Florida (with her). She really liked it here, felt right at home. But the heart murmer kept worsening. She was started on heart meds. Every day she took her medications like a champ. She knew I was helping her. She was the love of my life. In March 2010, one night I got up in the middle of the night and she had a seizure. I knew it was time. She didn’t come out of it. She couldn’t stand or hold her head up. I drove her to the Emergency Vet where we said good-by in a small 4-8 room. I still cry for her, but I have a new puppy. Just like you. Thank you, Mark for your wonderful words, sharing your heart with us.

— Carolyn from Cape Coral, FL