Penny was her name and she was the sweetest puppy that you could ever meet. A mini dapple dachshund, a gorgeous spotted puppy that even had spots inside her eyes. We brought her home from the breeder and it was love at first sight, especially for my 11-year-old. They bonded instantly and what was originally my dog quickly became hers. They spent time together, they slept together, and she was the first thing my daughter grabbed when she woke up in the morning. I would find the two of them watching cartoons cuddled up on the couch. It was truly a sight to see.
I could imagine the two of them growing up together, their bond growing tighter, as they grew older together. They would run through the park, giggling enjoying every moment with each other. I could see it as clear as day and yet none of that happened.
We had Penny for about six months before she started to have seizures. We kept taking her to the vet, never getting a reason as to why she was having them. They would run their tests but they couldn’t find anything wrong with her. It was heartbreaking to see her have seizures because we felt so helpless, there was nothing we could do to help her.
It came as a surprise to me the day that she died. She finally had the seizure that killed her, her little body unable to take it any longer. It was devastating to me but even more so for my daughter whom I had to tell when I picked her up from school. To see the heartbreak on her face was a little too much to take. I saw the love for Penny in her eyes and her heart was broken that her new puppy was already gone.
Many people think the loss of a pet is nothing because “it’s just a dog.” But Penny wasn’t just a dog to us; she was part of our family. My daughter grieved that dog like she would any of her family members and she was inconsolable for days. I know people who said they have grieved more for the loss of their pet than any relative or friend, that’s how attached we can get to our pets.
Getting over the loss of a pet can be difficult especially for a child who is unsure of how to react in the first place. My daughter is a sensitive girl but she often hides her emotions and losing Penny was a lot for her. She mentioned to me how she missed the fact that Penny wasn’t waiting for her in the morning when she woke up. I knew how she felt, we just missed having little Penny around.
Studies have shown that the loss of a pet can have the same effect on a human as the loss of a relative. It’s just an intense bond that we experience with our pets.
It’s been four months since the loss of Penny and I have to consider bringing in a new pet to our lives. My daughter misses the bond that she once had but I want to make sure enough time has passed for her to properly grieve Penny. I’m a little fearful because I worry that something might happen to the next pet and my daughter will have her heart broken again. Life is fragile and I have to trust nothing will happen. I want my daughter to have a pet because it makes her happy and I sure love having someone to cuddle with too when the little one is in bed for the night. So, who knows what the future will bring.
About the Creator
I spend my days writing and trying not to get sucked in by my Facebook notifications or get into the whiskey decanter (just kidding...kinda).
I love to kickbox and fly airplanes. Thanks for joining me! My website: www.kimmilove.com