An All Too Familiar Ache

I can’t believe I’m actually writing this post.

Howard, our puppy, had distemper. This past weekend, we had to put him down.

And now our family is once again dealing with the heartache of losing a pet.


It’s been an exhausting and emotional week. In the midst of it all, I’ve been doing a lot of praying and questioning. Mostly, why? Why did this happen, after all we went through with Holly?

Here’s the answer I found:

the kids

We bought our little Howard not knowing he was already infected. We enjoyed having him as part of our family for three joy-filled weeks. We loved on him, played with him, scruffed and squeezed and fed him. We gave him the only family and the only love he’d known in his short life.

And that is pretty awesome.

We welcomed Howard into our family, expecting to enjoy a long and happy life with him. We thought Howie was the gift to our family. Turns out we were really the gift to him. God used us to bless that little rascal while he was alive.

We love you, Howard. And we miss you so much. Please give Holly lots of cuddles for us.

My sweet boy

11 Comments Add yours

  1. Amy, reading this means a lot to me. So many times we ask “WHY?” in our lives and I rarely think about the reason being, “Because some one else needed this to happen.”

    Knowing that you made Howie’s short life so wonderful probably doesn’t make you miss him any less, but it does bring something good into this heartbreaking situation. You are generous of heart and spirit. Howie was a very lucky dog<3

    1. ❤ Thank you, Sara. ❤

  2. I lost a little kitten Gus from distemper. I had just gotten married and moved to Germany. I’d never been out of the country and my life was just so “unbalanced.” Gus was my only little friend when John was at work. It broke my heart to put him down.

    Howie was a lucky little guy to have your love and family. I am so sorry you are sad, my friend. Wish I could fix it for you–but since I can not–know that I am here for you. ❤

    1. I’m so sorry you went through this with Gus. That must have been awful, Kim. Hugs. Thank you for your kind words and friendship.

  3. Amy, I have tears in my eyes and flowing down my face. In my count, I’ve lost 9 dogs (and 1 cat) to death in my life. You may probably remember Daisy, the poodle/schnauzer that lived with me for 18 long, loving years. She must have been a puppy when I got her….and the many ones thereafter.

    I was amazed that you BOUGHT a dog. Yes, those puppies in the Pet Store are adorable, but the shelter’s have dogs that need good homes and you are likely to save a life.

    My precious Bonita, (Miss October in the PV SPCA calendar) was about to be euthanized by the cities of Palm Springs, and Corona, California until the Chihuahua Society rescued her. She’s no Chihuahua…she’s Schnauzer/Poodle/Terrier (terrior)….and she is my companera and travel partner. She not only brings so much joy to me, but to all the school children, families, etc. on the Malecon.

    Please see your local shelter and maybe save a life and name him/her Howard 2. I love you dearly.

    1. PS You could also name your new dog “Henrietta, Henley, Harvey, Helen or Happy”.

    2. I do remember Daisy. 🙂 She lived a long time! I also have fond memories of Princess and Pedro.

      We actually “bought” Howard from a local rescue. They charge a donation/rescue fee. He had been a stray and on the euthanasia list at a county shelter before being picked up by this no-kill rescue. I don’t think we’ve ever bought an animal from a pet store. Our cats have all come from the Humane Society, and our previous two dogs were stock dogs from a ranch.

    3. A Friend says:

      I can’t believe you would chastise someone for buying a puppy right after the puppy DIED. I believe in adopting animals from shelters too, but there’s a time and a place, and this blog post isn’t either one.

      1. Thank you. I appreciate this.

  4. Marta says:

    Yes, you were the best thing that could happen to this little fellow.
    I know how hard it is (I mean it), but I hope that there’ll be a place in your heart and your home for another furry H.

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