Ten years and one day: That's how long my dog Bubbles lived. In the early morning hours of Wednesday, Oct. 5, I, along with my mom and sister, looked into Bubbles' eyes as the veterinarian injected the necessary shots to euthanize her. We said our goodbyes, we kissed her one more time, we cried our eyes out. This has to be one of the most gut-wrenching experiences a person can go through.

Mere hours after her tenth birthday, her health took a turn for the worst. That one extra day. For ten full years, Bubbles, a boxer with ancestors who were show dogs, remained active (sometimes hyperactive!), in incredible shape, and provided our family with endless humor and personality, thanks to her bossy and sassy nature. She truly thought it was her world, and we were all sent here to serve her. Though the second one of us humans didn't feel well or had something bothering us, she went into consoling mode.

Photo by Joe Votruba / Townsquare Media

During our last moments together, I made an observation to my mom and sister that this dark morning filled with sadness was the first day in Bubbles' entire life that she actually looked old. She didn't look her age until she was LITERALLY on her deathbed. It was as if the life was being sucked out of her.

Two weeks prior, Bubbles suffered a seizure and collapsed. The veterinarian diagnosed her with anemia and pancreatitis. Two ailments that should have been affecting her more severely than they were, but she remained the same young-at-heart companion she had always been, even after this initial incident occurred. The vet prescribed her two different forms of medication, and reminded us that boxers tend to live between eight and twelve years. Here we were, smack dab in the middle. We knew we didn't have much time, but wanted to make sure Bubbles' last days were her most comfortable, and naturally, her most spoiled.

Looking back, it almost seems like Bubbles lived these last two weeks for us, not her. Either that, or she was just being her normal stubborn self and could not deal with missing the big ten year mark. You can tell me I'm too much of a dog-lover and that animals don't have these types of feelings, but I watched her call the shots her whole life as far as when she wanted to eat, go outside to play, seek human attention, be left alone, etc. I have no doubt that she decided she'd leave this earth on her terms as well. So your logic and reasoning have no place here!

Photo by Joe Votruba / Townsquare Media

Being at work, watching the MLB Wild Card game, a handy dandy bottle of wine, and hearing warm wishes from family, friends, coworkers, and you the listeners, helped take my mind off of it and put me more at ease. Thank you for that, by the way. But seeing Karma, our other family dog, depressed and missing her sister, is difficult to see. It's going to be difficult every time I eat a meal there in peace. Bubbles enjoyed serenading us with high pitched sounds every time a piece of human food was present. She even knew when we would sneak-eat in other rooms to avoid her pestering. If she had a feeling that was happening, she would be a downright bitch! And it's that kind of rambunctious personality I will miss the most.

Bubbles, you crazy, gorgeous dog, thank you for providing my family with ten years of joy and unconditional love. That one extra day of your life was also your worst, but I am relieved to know that the severe pain you endured was condensed to those final hours. Goodbye, my friend. See you on the other side.

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