Today is the saddest and most difficult day I have had in a long time. Cheese died- my faithful companion of 19 years. How I miss him!!!February 21, 2013.  He has been a vessel for me to pour my love into for 19 years. Before he was born I watched the day he was conceived and the day he was born I pulled the placenta off of him and cut his umbilical cord and watched him take his first breath. Today wrapped up in a blanket in my arms, I witnessed him taking his last. Today, I took him to be buried, today, we took our last and final road trip to the place that he would rest forever. Today, the tears just continue to flow without stopping. Today, I wonder how I will go on without him? Today, my heart is breaking…..
Cheese,  filled a void in my life which is now gaping and wide and I sit as I mourn and  wonder if can be filled again.  Cheese allowed me to be who I was with absolutely no judgment and no condemnation. He saw me when I was at my worst and at my best. He witnessed so many events in that twenty year period of time. He was something warm and alive to hang onto when everything in  my life seemed cold and meaningless. He was always grateful for the time I spent with him, never chastising me when I was not there for him, always faithful to snuggle against my arm or watch me from afar and knowing when I needed something. He would often come up to my chair and scratch as if to say remember me, I am here for you, just pick me up and we will handle it together, I am listening …. Tell me …I am a safe place for you to land.   He was a container for me to pour my love and affection into, when I poured my love into people it seems conditional. With him it was without condition.  He let me pour in as much as I needed to and as little as I was able to and it was always enough.  I am a nurturer and to be able to pour into something and not have it thrown back in your face or rejected is really a powerful thing. He was the vessel into which I was able to pour into boundlessly. I am so thankful to the Lord who knows the things that I have need of who let me have Cheese for this  period of time on this earth.  I miss him so much.  I miss his pattering paws scratching along the wood floor the sound of him bumping into things when he became blind, even feeding him chopped mashed food because his teeth were not what they use to be.  I miss not feeling that little heartbeat next to mine in the middle of the night after a bad dream, or even a moment of reaching out and having the assurance that was not alone. There was another heartbeat in my house hold besides just mine.
With Cheese I was never alone.  His presence was always waiting and ever consistent.  He traveled so many places with me, my traveling buddy.  Never was there a place that he was not received or welcomed. l love my  red ( orange to me and others) haired, brown eyed, dog, even if his ears were too big, his under-bite made him look like he was smiling all the time, his bark was pitiful, but so cute,  ( he was a miniature pinscher ) but he looked like a fat Chihuahua, his belly round, his thin legs looked like they could not support him.  They truly broke the mold when they made him!
He would become a guard dog if he felt he needed to be even though small he felt mighty when it came to protecting those he loved.  He loved to go Bye Bye his ears would perk up and he would look for the travel bag making sure he sat in the middle of it to make sure that he would not be forgotten or left behind.  He was always near the door waiting for me often not eating or drinking when I would be gone for a period of several days on trips he had to be left behind.  He would be first to greet me when he heard me with a wagging tale and yes, he would greet me and perhaps just sit next to my feet and not want to held as if to say “ I am mad at you for leaving me behind” But he never held a grudge for long. A doggie treat or just lap time quickly made up for the time I was gone.  He was with me during some of the darkest periods of my life, divorce, sickness, cancer, and my broken heart.  Cheese was a constant. Standing guard when I was going thru cancer treatments, laying on my chest as I slept as if to make sure I was going to wake up. During the fever no matter how hot my body became he laid next to me sometimes by the pillow to make sure he was there when I opened my eyes.  Yes, he was ever watchful.  It meant more to me than anyone could know.  More importantly and most importantly I realized after he was gone, he filled a void in my life and was a tangle point of contact, which I so desperately need. He allowed me to have a safe place to pour my love into, a place that it was never rejected, thrown back, or belittled.  Physical contact was always accepted, and he allowed that without stipulations, conditions, no matter what time of the day without boundaries or explanations it was always welcome with no fear no reprisals no judgments,  his soft coat and rounded belly the smoothness of his ears were a tactile point of contact which was never withheld. His antics made me laugh, he brought life no matter where he went.  He was my best friend and life without him is going to harder than I thought. There will be no other to replace him, even though another companion may be bought there will be no one to witness those twenty years again and with those years he carried the memories of great and wonderful times and times that were not. Ever the sentinel standing guard over my heart, my mistakes, my passions, my joys, my tears, my trials and my private thoughts that were trusted to no one but him.  Many chapters in my life is closed today, the day that I lost my most loyal and beloved friend. I miss you my darling little chi chi, my preciousness.  I love you Cheese! You will be missed and Never Forgotten. Rest now, If “All dogs go to Heaven” then you have more than earned your spot there.

— Karen from Ft. Worth, TX