Even though I had suspected the worst for a few weeks, nothing could have ever prepared me for that phone call from my mom.
“Tucker has taken a turn for the worst and has to be put to sleep … today”
She offered to wait for me to come say my last goodbyes, but I couldn’t bring myself to go. A little while later she texted me saying our sweet angel had gone to sleep peacefully.
12 or 13 years ago when my brother brought home that little chocolate ball of fur I never expected him to grow to be one of the biggest, most loving aspects of my life.
A judge free friend – Tucker was there for some of the worst times of life: the daily struggles of high school, the death of friends, emergency scares with family members, just every day life.
If you never owned a dog, or any pet for that matter you might not understand this, but if you have – you 100% understand.
Your dog becomes a member of your family.
Tucker was part of our family for half of my life, every single day – how could he not be a member of the family, how could him passing on not hurt so bad?
“It is amazing how much love and laughter they bring into our lives and even how much closer we become with each other because of them” – Marley & Me
Every meal we ate Tucker was right there sitting by the table with us, every holiday Tucker was right there in the middle of the kitchen surrounded by the chaos and love.
I honestly feel a piece of my heart left with him yesterday. Yesterday, we lost a family member – the house greeter, crumb eater, pillow beater, couldn’t be sweeter pup will truly be missed. I aspire to be the person Tucker always thought I was ❤
Some things I learned from my Tuckie:
Live in the moment
Everything is an adventure, every moment is an opportunity. Sometimes you have to beg for what you truly want, follow your heart. End of story.
Treat everyone with kindness
Some people aren’t dog people, some little humans (kids) may be a little scared of you, you may seem different in their eyes, maybe someone had a bad experience with a dog before. Tucker didn’t care. Gentles kisses and a rapid tail wag is what everyone was greeted with. Do your best to be a positive influence in someone’s life, be kind.
It’s the quality of life that matters
There are some amazing stories out there of kid’s explaining why dogs live shorter than humans and they are all so real. Animals love so intensely and rely so much on their human to provide for them, and they make the best out of all situations. No one can deny that Tucker had an amazing life full of love and happiness – that makes this a little easier knowing that he had the best life possible. No matter how old he got, he spent every day acting like a puppy exploring and giving in to his curiosity. Age means nothing, never slow down.
When you find your person, protect them
My dad was Tucker’s person, but he definitely looked after all of us. Everywhere my dad went, Tucker was not far behind or he would make sure he had an eye on him. When my parents went on vacation Tucker would lay outside next to my dad’s truck waiting for him.
Tucker also conducted what we call ‘perimeter checks’ – once a day (or more if he felt necessary) he would go around the perimeter our ENTIRE property to make sure his territory was properly marked and everything was good.
Call me crazy, but there are days I swear he saved me – there were some perimeter checks would last longer than normal, once in a while they were QUITE long and I would get frustrated, but later see there was a fatal or bad accident along my route – there were times I left the house and he would bark at me – worried he may wake someone I shusshed him, later to see that I forgot my cell phone or lunch, etc. he knew.
When you care about someone, make sure they know and take care of them.
Throughout Tucker’s life we all may have lost a few shoes, some homework has gone missing (yes, that happens), snacks and lunches went MIA, a paycheck may have been eaten, things may have gotten messy with torn up trash, some accidents, etc. The anger in all of these situations lasted AT MOST about five minuets, and then that big goober would trot around the corner tongue out making you smile again. It makes you think how much time you have wasted how many memories or laughs were wasted being angry at a person in your life.
Every time you see someone you love, celebrate it
Every single time I walked in the door the barking and pitter patter of his paws came right at me – I recently moved away, but every time I went back to my parents house it was the same response. It is truly amazing to me how he loved so unconditionally and was ALWAYS happy to see someone come home.
Don’t let your size hold you back
This ‘little’ fella was a lap dog at heart.
Again, if you don’t or have never had a pet, this may make no sense to you, it may even be a little strange, but if you ever get one, you will understand.
See you soon pal, miss you already!