I have always been a dog lover. I put this page together as a modest "in memoriam" for my dog Tiffany Annette (affectionately known as Tiffy), who left us in 1997.
 

 

 

 About Tiffy

 

I know that many do not like pet shops, and I usually do not buy animals from pet shops. But the way Tiffy became part of our family is special. My Mom and brother had gone to the pet shop to buy some crickets for our lizards. While they were there, they saw a little black dog running playfully around the store. Mom picked the dog up and started talking to her and petting her. As the owner rang up Mom's purchases, the dog fell asleep in Mom's arms. The owner was surprised, commenting that the dog had never done that before, but that there was another couple who wanted to buy her.
Mom immediately went home and called my Dad. It takes a lot for my Mom to cry, but she began to cry as she told Dad about the cute little dog with the white hair on her chest who fell asleep in Mom's arms. Dad relented and told Mom to go back up to the pet shop and get the dog.

 

 

Tiffy--my cheering section

 

Tiffy and I didn't get off to a good start. When Mom took me with her to get Tiffy from the pet shop, my first impression was of a loud-mouthed pest. I then realized that her foot was stuck in the cage bars, and she couldn't get it out. Later, when she chewed up the cover of my yearbook, I told Mom that I hated Tiffy and wanted to get rid of her.
As time passed, Tiffy and I became the best of friends. When I sat on the couch, she would snuggle up right next to my leg. Sometimes, I would feel little paws on my bed at night as Tiffy jumped up to sleep with me. One morning, I found her curled up in a ball on my stomach.
Then I went off to college. We had to leave Tiffy with a neighbor, but she refused to eat. She had to be brought back home until my parents and brother came back from taking me to Florida. Mom says that Tiffy was inconsolable for the next few days.
When I called home from college, Mom would put the phone up to Tiffy's ear. Mom says that Tiffy would run back to my bedroom and look inquiringly at her.

 

 

My little black beauty

 

Tiffy had a cataract in her right eye. I didn't know at the time that there was help for her. By the time I realized it, she was nearly blind in that eye.
When I graduated from college, I continued to live with my parents (and Tiffy). She always amazed me with her recognition of words and phrases, and with how she knew when someone was going outside (and not taking her!)
She knew what cheese, Milk-Bone, outside, bug check, and leash were, and she recognized the phrase if you be a good girl, I'll give you something you like. (She wasn't too keen on bug check, though. LOL)
One of the many things I loved about Tiffy was her genuine happiness to see me when I came home from work. No matter how long I was out of the house, she always wagged her tail and jumped on me to pet her. She always knew when I had had a bad day, and cuddled up closer to me.

 

 

And the end draws near...

 
I think Tiffy knew before any of us that she would not be with us much longer. Despite my best efforts, I was unable to get rid of all the fleas that were slowly sucking the life out of her.
She looked helplessly at my mom, with "Help me" in her brown eyes. My brother and I rushed her to the veterinarian, who told us it would be best to go home until he sent us word. The vet's office called about three hours later, insisting that he talk to my dad immediately.
My dad, my brother, and I drove up to the animal hospital, hoping for the best, but inwardly fearing the worst. It seems that my beautiful friend was fighting for her life against impossible odds. Fleas had sucked almost all the life out of her, and her tongue was a sickly white instead of pink.
As we rushed her to the animal emergency room, I told her over and over how sorry I was that I hadn't been able to help her more. I blamed myself for her suffering, and held her close to me. The doctor at the emergency room sternly told us that Tiffy had very little chance of surviving.
I took out all the money from my savings account, trying to help pay for her care. I implored God to show mercy on Tiffy, for her own sake. The next morning, the emergency room doctor called us to come up there.
It seemed that she was improving. We brought her home, and she snuggled up next to me in my bed. I took her into the living room so that the others could spend a little time with her, too. My dad yelled for me about half an hour later. Tiffy was going into seizures. I rubbed a towel all over my face so that Tiffy would at least have my scent nearby. My dad and brother rushed her back to the emergency room and hoped that she would be all right again.
Early the next morning, as I slept, my dad and the veterinarian talked. My mom woke me up and asked me to hear what my dad had to say.
He started out, "I was going to take Tiffy to her doctor, but I changed my mind." A surge of hope came up, and I thought that maybe she had pulled through. But then he continued, "I thought it was best to put her out of her misery, and have her put to sleep here."
 

  In the days that followed, I attempted suicide and demanded of God, "Why did you take the one thing I loved more than anything else?" Even after all this time, I am still not over my friend and confidante. Unless you've lost a pet, you can never understand...
 

 

 

 

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