Oh, thank you, Chris, for sharing your stories, and I am sorry for your losses as well, even one that was 25 years ago.

I’ve been through this more times than I can count. I believe I’ve had over 40 dogs and cats in my life. Most of their endings were decisions I was forced to make. And, as you say, it never gets easier, even when you know the decision was right.

Sophie’s was an unusual situation, though. She and her sister were 10-years-old when we adopted them in 2018. We lost our Pooh, a 45-pound dog, a few months before and our Chanelito, a Pekingese, was 15-years-old. Although lap-dog-size, Chanelito was not a lapdog. He was very independent and required little attention beyond food, walks, and pets on the head or the belly. He did not like to get up on the furniture or to be held.

Pooh and almost all my dogs before Chanelito were larger and predominantly outside dogs — a different dynamic than small, indoor lap dogs. Sophie and Syau were small, indoor lapdogs who wanted to be next to us all the time, showering us with affection.

Although 10-years is not young for dogs, their breeds often live to be 15 to 18 years-old. We figured to have them for several years. Both dogs acted much younger than their years. Strangers couldn’t believe how old they were.

We lost Chanelito last July but thought we had years to go before grieving for another dog.

Because of their youthful exuberance and high energy, I never thought Sophie or Syau would become ill and leave us so soon.

Three dogs in three years is more than my heart can handle.

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