I wish I could somehow send this letter directly to your sweet soul, wherever you are, so I could know for sure that you understand these words, how much you were loved, and how much of a gift you’ve been to my heart. I miss you more than I ever thought possible. There is this incredible void within me without your presence, and my life is not nearly as sweet without you in it.
When I saw you for the first time, as that shy little pup looking at me with curiosity from behind the fence, I knew that we were meant to be together. I felt something stir in my heart, and from then on, you were my precious companion. I always thought we’d have many years together, you and I. Even though I believed that, somehow I also felt how important it was to savor many of our moments together. I am so thankful that I did. Before you, I’d never understood what it was to just ‘be’… you taught me how to do that. You always made that so easy; your big warm furriness leaning against me as we watched TV together or sat and gazed upon the trees at the park. Your wild abandonment as you sailed over the forest paths during our countless walks, seeking a new scent or some critter to chase, always made me smile with a quiet joy, and make me forget all of my menial troubles for awhile. You stood by me through most of my tumultuous twenties, and watched me grow into an adult, and then into a professional. Your soft brown eyes always seemed to tell me that you understood it all, that though you knew we couldn’t be together all the time, you also knew I’d always come home to you. Your unwavering patience and genuine happiness at every single reunion always gave me the strength to push through any of my worldly problems. Home was always were you were. Joy was where you were. Peace was where you were. You watched me fumble my way through relationships, tough decisions, and family strife. You caught my tears when I clung to you; you nuzzled my hand when I needed reassurance. Though I can’t imagine I was always the easiest human to live with, you made me feel somehow that you accepted me, and that we belonged together.
Watching you grow and learn things was one of the most rewarding things; I never imagined that I could care for a creature in quite the way I cared for you. You were the funniest, most mischievous pup at times… there was never a dull moment with you near. I always loved having you around, and so did everyone else, all through your life. Your quirks were so endearing; even your silly eating habits with that blue rubber ball brought smiles and laughter to my heart. Though you were such a giant, and I knew I never needed to worry about being in danger when you were around, your gentleness always won out. You were always so good-natured, and so full of love, never with the intention to hurt anyone. You taught me that love comes in many forms, that life is best lived in the joy of the moment, and that loyalty and acceptance are the best ingredients in any sort of relationship. You have managed to define much of who I am today; without you, I would not understand the true meaning of a life well lived. You’ve taught me more lessons about life than anyone else ever could.
Letting you go was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I know you let me know that it was okay, that you understood and accepted that our time was coming to an end, but I still feel cheated; seven years was not enough with my sweetest, dearest friend. I miss coming home to you at the end of the day; the hardest part of any day since you’ve been gone has been walking through the door, knowing that you aren’t there to greet me. I miss those giant puppy hugs and the feel of your soft fur against my cheek. Please know that you were never “just a dog” to me… you were my angel, my sweet baby, and most of all, my friend. I cannot thank you enough for all of the happiness you’ve brought into my life and for all of the precious memories that will forever stay within my heart. You have been one of the most divine gifts, and I am forever changed for the better because of you. Thank you for being my dog, and thank you for always loving me back. You were one of a kind, Jaeger, and you will always be my sweet Pupzilla. I miss you and I love you.