About 2 ½ years ago, pitch black outside, our doorbell rang.  A woman was standing on our front porch, holding a pathetic-looking little Boston Terrier.  She said, “Is this your dog?  I found it wandering down the middle of the street.”  We told her it was not, and we did not recognize it as any of the dogs that lived in the neighborhood, but we would take it inside and look after it and see if we could find out who it belonged to.  We took it inside – she was a little female – we had no idea how old she was, where she came from, or whether she was hungry or thirsty.  We have another dog, a Border Terrier named Ringo, so we had some dog food.  We put her in the kitchen & gave her a bowl of dog food and a bowl of water.  She ate a little food, drank a little water but basically just sat there with a quizzical expression on her face, making odd noises.
We found out she belonged to a friend of our next door neighbor’s mother.  Our neighbor’s mother lived about a ½ mile down the street from us, on the opposite side from our next door neighbor’s house, and this friend, and her dog, were staying with her.  Where we live is pretty rural, and our street is narrow, winds around a lot and is very dark, as there are no streetlights and the houses are far apart.  It was a miracle this little dog made it all the way from our neighbor’s mother’s house to outside our front door without getting run over, and a miracle that the woman who rang our doorbell saw her and stopped to pick her up.  Her name was “Annie,” and she was deaf.  We figured she was safe back home with our neighbor’s mother’s friend.
Late last March, my wife got an e-mail from our next door neighbor, asking if we knew anyone who wanted to adopt a deaf dog.  It seems her mother’s friend had abandoned Annie at our neighbor’s mother’s house.  Our neighbor’s mother was ill and could not look after the dog, and the friend would not, for reasons unknown, take back the dog.  Annie had made a good impression on us the time she had spent in our kitchen, so we told our neighbor we would adopt her.  We think she was about 8 years old at the time.
Our neighbor brought Annie to our house early last April.  We took her to our vet to get her updated on her shots, checked for heartworm, have her rather bad teeth seen to and otherwise take care of her health needs.  She really loved it here – she played with her toys, ran around the house and pretty much made herself at home.  Although she was a little thing, she was tough, and pushed our poor other dog around on occasion (but not too much).  Ringo was a good sport about it (& a good thing, too, as he easily could’ve killed Annie if he tried).  She also got along well with our Maine Coon Cat, Gordo.  Annie especially loved my wife, Allison, and followed her around like a little shadow.
This morning, she went to the vet to have some nasty looking tumors removed from her skin.  The vet did a needle biopsy of one last week – he did not think they were malignant but said they may have been, and were certainly pre-cancerous and should come off.  Annie went into cardiac arrest and died on the operating table.
I know lots of bad things happen in the world every day, and lots of innocent people die, and Annie was just a little dog, but Allison and I are very sad today.  Allison said Annie needed someone and found us – all I know is she had a very good home for the last 16 months of her life – we only wish she could’ve spent more time with us.  She was a good little dog and will be missed.

— Bruce from Long Valley, NJ