Life Update


It feels like I haven’t read or written a blog post in a few years at this point (yesterday’s post was scheduled). I just wanted to hop on here and give a life update since so much has been happening. On Friday, I had to say goodbye to my best friend- my beloved rescued golden/chow mix, Walter.

We rescued him in 2010, and he was already a senior. If you follow me on Instagram you see pictures of him all the time! 🙂 Walter was a disabled dog too (radial nerve paralysis in his front left leg), but he never let that stop him. He was old when we got him, but that doesn’t mean I was ready to say goodbye. Are we ever ready when it comes to a dog? In my experience, definitely not. I’m not completely sure of Walter’s true age, but he was probably 14 or 15 when he passed away. Pretty amazing for a dog of his size and with a disability!

chow copy

It’s hard to explain the love and adoration I have for him. We had an incredible bond. If you want to read more about Walter’s life, you can check out this blog post I wrote in 2011 about his one year update. Walter lived a happy life with us and he also died happy. He just stopped eating last week and the vet said he just got old; his bones couldn’t support the weight of his body anymore, especially with his disability.


To make things worse, my husband and I were signed up to run a race on Saturday morning. I barely ate on Friday, cried all night, cried all morning on Saturday, and didn’t stretch as much as I needed. By some miracle I finished the race in 35:52, and believe me every step felt like a struggle. I think Walter carried me that whole way, because I just wasn’t up for running. Still, it was a Veterans Honor Run and how could I possibly skip out on a race for veterans!? My running mantra was “run with four legs”, because Walter always had to hobble around with one bad one.

handsome copy

I promised Walter he would never suffer with me, and he never did. His last day was a good day, and he did all of his favorite things: snuggling with me, slept under the tree in the sun, and slept on his new dog bed. He just wouldn’t eat…and when he wouldn’t eat his favorite food, it was time. Our favorite vet was there and even he was choking up about it, but he made a good point: you never want the dog to have more bad days than good days, and that’s probably where Walter was headed without eating.

Yesterday, (our wedding anniversary of all days) my husband and I picked up his ashes, so now my boy is home. I feel a little better with this, but it will take time to heal, that’s for sure. I’m just going to try and keep busy by writing more, as I have tons of ideas for this blog all the time!

Thank you for reading. 🙂


*Edit- Please visit the comments to see a very loving tribute from my amazing husband!

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15 Responses to Life Update

  1. Alan Chichester says:

    Walter was a one-of-a-kind dog. When Wembley passed away I was not ready for a new dog, and had grave concerns about adopting one with Walter’s special needs. Needless to say, Walter won me over in no time with his incredible capacity to trust and love again after years of hurt and neglect. And of course he had a winning smile that only the most cold-hearted of people could resist.

    Walter’s bond with Melissa was so unbreakable and enduring that any other human relationship he had was bound to pale in comparison, but Walter amazingly opened his heart to me despite a ingrained fear of men. We bonded as the only boys of the house and I will be forever grateful to Melissa for insisting on giving him a chance. He had so much love and happiness to give, and the thought of him dying, cold and alone, in a God-forsaken kill shelter in Ohio, still haunts me. The moment I became convinced it was the right thing to do was when Melissa told me “even if he only survives one day, he will die knowing someone loved him.” I still cry thinking about those words.

    Walter, it was an honor to be part of your family. I was never going to be ready to say goodbye to you, but I feel so lucky that we got four amazing years with you before we had to let you go. If we showed you even a fraction of the love you gave in return, then you had no doubt about how loved you really were. My friend, my companion, my family member. Forever loved and forever missed. Godspeed my dear Walter.

    • Amy says:

      Such a beautiful tribute. People who open their hearts to animals are amazing. I feel some of your pain. We had to say goodbye to our dear border collie, Theo, too soon. It was so hard. They’re such special family members.

  2. Barbara Seidler says:

    Walter has a sweet face and will always have a place in your heart which is where everyone wants to be — to have a place in someone’s heart. Love is all there is —– an he was loved.

    Date: Tue, 12 Nov 2013 12:58:52 +0000 To:

  3. Carina says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Even though the pain is great, I’m sure you made him the happiest he could be. ❤ It's so touching to hear that you felt his presence helping you finish the race. Rest in peace, Walter.

  4. Nellz says:

    Sorry for your loss Melissa. I’m sure Walter is in a happy place now. My prayers for him.. I lost mine a couple of months ago too so I know its really sad to lose them. But the bond will always be there.

    • MelissaC says:

      I’m really sorry to hear that! Thank you for your kind words. And you’re right, the bond will always be there. 🙂

  5. Kitsu says:

    Oh no, I’m so sorry for your loss. He does look so happy in that photo with you though, and I’m sure that he knew he was loved.

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  7. I am so sorry to hear about Walter. He seemed like such a sweet dog. I know that losing a pet is very difficult. I am sending you virtual hugs.

  8. Bridgett says:

    So sorry to hear about the loss of your furry family member! I’m glad you’re able to focus on the positive and remember the good times. I hope those memories give you some comfort in this difficult time.

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