White Dog spent the day mourning the sudden loss of Charlie, one of her first blog follower friends, who died of renal failure yesterday. She has searched for an explanation of why he was taken so suddenly and has shed tears for the heartbreaking pain his mom is feeling at his loss. The best reason we found is this story, circulating on Facebook and which we now share in tribute to her wonderful friend...and in consolation to his family:
"A DOG'S PURPOSE (from a 6-year-old)
Being a veterinarian I had been called to examine a 10-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's family, Ron, his wife, Lisa, and little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker and they were hoping for a miracle. I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old sick dog in their home. As we made arrangements, the parents told me they wanted Shane to be a part of the procedure as they felt he would learn something important from the experience.
The next day, I felt a familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away. The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together after Belker's death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives.
Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, "I know why."
Startled we all turned to him. What came out his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation. It has changed the way I try and live.
He said, "People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life--like loving everybody all of the time and being nice, right?" The six-year-old continued,
"Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long."
Dogs teach us to: Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Always run to greet loved ones when they return home. Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride. Allow the experience of fresh air and wind in your face to be pure ecstasy. Take naps. Stretch before rising. Run, romp, and play daily. Thrive on attention and let people touch you. Avoid biting when a growl will do. On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass. On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree. When you are happy, dance around and wag your entire body. Delight in the simple joy of a long walk. Be loyal. Never pretend to be something you are not. If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it. When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle them gently.
Enjoy every moment of every day!"
Farewell, Charlie. Run with endless energy, free of pain on the other side of the Bridge. Watch over your mom and be there to greet her when it is her time to cross. We will miss but never forget you because our memories are rich with your stories and our hearts filled with your gentle patient love.