We lost Cricket this week. Dementia, kidney failure, and plain old age finally caught up with her. At 18+ she was ancient in dog years yet still remained spry until almost the end.

I didn’t want a dog, but Mrs Mack505 talked me into one back in 2007. Cricket was a rescue from a high-kill shelter in TN. She also wasn’t the type of dog I thought I’d want, if I wanted a dog. And she was perfect.

I don’t know what I’ll do without her.

Our last day together was as nice as we could make it. Lunch was chicken nuggets; dinner featured pizza crusts. There was some forbidden cat food along the way. In the morning we shared some quiet time over tea and a book, then we took a walk around the yard to sniff things.

Cri took an unusual interest in one corner of the yard. It’s a back corner where there is a patch of unspoiled woods. It had never held any interest before, but she wanted to cross the stone wall and explore further.

And I can’t get that image out of my head.

Our time together really ended at the vet’s office, but I have a vision of her in those woods. I can see her prancing over the wall, pausing to look back at me, and then trotting away to chase squirrels with her tail in the air.

I want to remember her among those trees, in a place she was never allowed to experience. A place I can see from my chair on the back porch. I NEED to remember her soul out there frolicking.

Rest easy, sweetheart. No more pain or confusion. You’re a good girl and we love you very much. Run with the squirrels, and we will see you again someday.

Cricket Chadbourne, 2004-10/2022


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