An Unexpected Tragedy

Saturday night, my husband and I went out to celebrate our 1st anniversary. We came home that night and proceeded to check on our dogs. I went around back to our eldest dog who just had puppies, while he went out front to our 6 and 5 month old dogs. While I was checking on Mama dog, I heard one of the dogs out front start barking and my husband was crying. Given that we used to have a whiny dog that we used to make whines back at, I thought he was just picking at the barking dog. When I finished checking on Mama dog and her pups, I walked around front to see my husband on his knees petting one of the dogs while sobbing (my husband truly loves and cares for our dogs. They are like family to us.) Shocked, I asked him what was wrong. He called out that our 6 month old Blue Heeler-lab mix puppy had passed away. I have been in utter shock and have been very sad. Atlas, the puppy, was a very sweet and loving dog who loved water and Mama dog. He always played in the water bowls and would always sit for a treat no matter what you said to him. We are completely devastated and already miss him terribly. We buried him in our front yard while I petted him one last time knowing I'd never be able to feel his curly fur on his back and the little curl at the end of his tail, and talked about the good times with him and regrets we had (I felt as if I didn't show him enough attention and wished I could hold him one last time) We got him when he was very small. When I took him to the vet the first time, I gave him a bath and wrapped him up in a towel then sat down on the loveseat and we fell asleep. He stayed right there in my arms and just slept on me so sweetly. I wish I could go back to that moment. I'm sorry for the long post, but just thought I'd encourage everyone to please cherish every moment with your pets. You never know when that will be the last time you get to pet or hold them.. or give them a treat or see them sit. We planned for him to be our trick dog, to teach him lots of cool tricks to show off to our friends.. but it didn't happen that way. Please hold your pets a little closer tonight, because we'd give anything to be able to hold him again.