Missing our dogs
Ever since our dog Maya died of a twisted stomach, and we made the painful decision to put down our other dog Nelly to end her suffering from cancer, I never wanted to become close to another dog. It was simply too heartbreaking to say goodbye, and I didn’t want to risk reliving that experience. So I avoided other dogs and the topic of adopting another dog. There’s no way we could ever replace Maya and Nelly, and there’s no way I would let myself love another dog.
For years, I would discourage my wife from thinking about another dog. I still miss them deeply and will never be over their deaths. But I find comfort in the many wonderful memories made while they were in our lives. I wrote a blog about how they helped me cope with cancer named, My Dogs’ Reaction to My Cancer Diagnosis.
But deep in my heart, I knew that Maya and Nelly would want me to be happy. And they would want me to find another dog. It wasn’t an easy decision or one to take lightly. Caring for a dog is a major responsibility. And it requires just as much work as raising a child. Or perhaps, even more work. And you have to be prepared physically, mentally, and financially. It took a lot of time and a lot of discussions, but I finally opened up to the possibility of adopting another dog.
Searching for Mickey
With that news, it didn’t take long for my wife to scour the local pet shelters and breeders. But we quickly learned that there was a considerable shortage of dogs. And for the few dogs available, several hundreds of applications were ahead of ours. We searched for over a year and applied for dozens of dogs, only to learn we were unsuccessful and asked to try again. It became very disappointing and heartbreaking, almost to the point where we were going to give up.
That’s when we got an unexpected phone call from our daughter, telling us that our son-in-law needed to talk with us as soon as possible. I’m not sure why we tend to think the worst, but we thought something terrible had happened! But on the contrary, he told us that one of his cousins has a dog that recently gave birth to four little chihuahuas, and there was one left if we were interested.
Of course, we jumped at the chance and contacted the owner. After discussing and viewing several photos and videos, Mary and I agreed to adopt.
And now we are once again blessed with a new puppy! Raising him will require much time and effort, but the emotional rewards are priceless! And I already feel the mental health benefits of his presence. He is so tiny and dependent on us that my thoughts of fear of cancer recurrence and upcoming scans and bloodwork have shifted to focus on his care.
Since Mary and I are big Disney fans, and our new puppy is a male, we named him Mickey. And it turned out to be a very appropriate name as he is as small as a mouse!
I’m grateful for the opportunity to share my prostate cancer diagnosis and lessons learned. You can read all my family posts under Gogs’ Family.
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