Pets become such a huge part of our lives. They make us laugh when life gets hard, make us smile on our worst days, bring us comfort during times of sickness, and make us remember how the simple things in life can bring great pleasure. If you’ve ever watched a pet grow old and eventually had to make their final life decision, you also know they can break your heart.
Yesterday was the day we laid to rest our dog of almost 14 years. After a long list of health issues, including arthritis (that left him only able to walk on three legs) and cancer, we had to make the tough decision of letting go.
Coal was a Christmas gift given to my little brother and sister, Josh and Danielle. They begged for months to get a dog and on Christmas Eve of 2000, my parents surrendered. Coal was a tiny little fluff ball in a big red bow.
Although my brother and sister immediately proclaimed Coal as their own, it wasn’t long until our entire family fell in love with him. Eventually my brother and sister nicknamed him Tuggie, a twisted and shortened version of Sugar, it stuck (don’t ask…till this day I’m still confused by the evolution of his name)!
Tuggie loved to play! He was an adventurous dog who often escaped. Sometimes he would be gone for hours usually to visit his mom and dad, Skippy and Sweetie, who lived at a neighbor’s house down the street. Once he was gone for a couple days, only to turn up at an animal hospital after being hit by a car. Tuggie was a fighter, so it barely fazed him. The dog had spunk!
As we got older, Tuggie traveled to Michigan to attend college with me and my sister. After my sister graduated, Tuggie took up residence with her. His most recent months have been spent living at our house. He’s a traveling dog! He’s met so many people through his adventures and hopefully will be remembered as a little pup who brought a lot of sunshine to the world. Tuggie taught us so much and had a lasting impact on our lives. It only seemed right to make his last day on this earth one we would all treasurer forever. Inspired by Duke’s Story, we planned Tuggie’s perfect last day…
Hopefully Tuggie can teach everyone to enjoy the simple things in life! Unlike dogs, most humans don't get to plan the perfect last day, so make the most of your lifetime! Take your dog for a walk, have that second helping of ice cream, take a car ride to absolutely nowhere, and enjoy every second of this beautiful life.
Goodbye my love! You will be missed little Tuggie dog...