I recently lost my Shiba Inu, Max to what we can only guess was a spider bite. He was only 6 and too young to go. I had many more years of things I had planned to do with him. I found him in a shelter over 6 years ago before I even knew what a Shiba Inu was. I was used to cattle dogs so adjusting to a cat/dog took a little time. You can never let them off leash because they’ll take off to parts unknown. That’s how I thought I would lose him. He’d get loose and I’d never see him again. All our others dogs lived to old age and had sicknesses so we were prepared but this was unexpected. I’ve been having a hard time. I continually play the “what if” game. What if I had taken him to vet sooner? He’d had allergies before, plus he and the other dog had been at it over a bone a couple of days earlier, so we didn’t think much about him chewing the hair off his hip. 36 hours later he was dead. They tell me that even if I had brought him in that morning, it wouldn’t have help. I’ve never been this close to one of my dogs before. He was MY dog, my buddy, my constant companion and I felt like I failed him. He left me on Sept 21 and I still have trouble accepting it but at least I’m not crying anymore.

— Joni from Denton, TX