Last night we said goodbye to our sweet puppy, Aspen. It all came so fast, but watching her condition progress so quickly and see her as we did yesterday, we knew that we couldn’t allow her to continue on with her life and experience severe kidney failure, which was imminent. It was the most difficult decision I have ever been faced with, but we wanted Aspen to go peacefully and without enduring any unnecessary pain.
Aspen and I got off to a pretty rocky start. The first six weeks of our co-existence together were really tough. I had never had a dog before, let alone a puppy, and was completely unprepared for what having a puppy means. Both of us were trying to figure out each other and we were competing for Alex’s #1 girl. Thankfully I won. Once I got to know Aspen a bit better and understand her personality and her quirks things only went up from there. This challenging time in our relationship taught me patience, among other things. I learned so much from Aspen and we shared so many good times and wonderful memories together.
We know that it is rare to lose a puppy at such an early age, but we are devastated at the loss of her and of our investment in her lives with us. Our days really revolved around Aspen, we planned our Saturday ski days around her, our weekends at home were organized around her schedule, and our free time was consumed in spending time with her. Before we got Aspen we talked about how we wanted to train her. We decided that her training would be positive reinforcement. We ultimately put her through one and a half puppy classes and hours upon hours of training at home and at the park to cement that training. We wanted Aspen to have a safe place to run around outside, so we spent the better half of the summer completely renovating our backyard and building a fence for her. We did our research on puppy food and ended up getting a top-of-the-line kibble and canned food for her that contained wholesome ingredients instead of chemicals and by-products. The last couple of months have given us a glimpse into what Aspen could have been as a mature dog. Now, we are dealing with the loss of our investment in her future. We will never get to see what could have been.
After we got home last night Alex said that he was glad that of all of the puppies in Aspen’s litter that we were the ones to get her, even though she was the first to go. Aspen has never really been completely healthy in her life with us, but we are confident that we did everything we could to provide the best care for her. We are so thankful that we were able to provide the necessary level of care for Aspen from start to finish.
I will miss Aspen so much. I never thought I’d become so fond of her as I have over the last 4 months or so, and I never imagined that saying goodbye would be this agonizing. She will always be a part of our family. Every time I walk past the kitchen I still expect her to be sitting there wagging her tail with her Garfield toy in her mouth. It will take some time to deal with her loss, but I know it will get easier.
It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to our sweet Aspen.