The Buie's Speckled Summer "Daisy" — beloved beagle of Joe, Camille and Marissa Buie — would have been 16 years old on July 10. And silly me, I thought she had a good year or two left.
Daisy, apparently, knew better.
She was calm at the vet's office Saturday — no signs of anxiety — as we sought clarity on what was ailing our dog. We got our answer, one we never expected. Daisy had cancerous tumors growing in her lower abdomen, which explained her "bathroom" troubles.
We couldn't have asked for a better vet, at that moment, than Dr. Michael Maris at Shelley Drive Animal Clinic. He was compassionate but forthright. Daisy's cancer was going to get worse and soon.
I could never have made the decision by myself, but when Camille, my wife, came to terms with what had to be done, it would have been purely selfish on my part to say no.
Still, I consulted with the vet one last time to make sure this was the best decision. He said it was, that we were making a brave decision before Daisy really began to suffer.
Daisy passed away peacefully, and soon sent us a heavenly message from God in the form of a red cardinal, which I first saw outside our garage at home just as I went to retrieve the towel that Daisy had sat on during the ride to the vet's office.
We took the cardinal as a sign that Daisy was saying she was just fine, and she loved us very much and knew we loved her the same.
We also were shown love through our Facebook friends with more than 100 comments of condolences after Camille posted a beautiful tribute to our "fur baby … our first born baby."
"We all love Daisy — sweet girl. She is just such part of the family. Her sitting in the curtains where she looked like a nun still brings a smile to my face."
"I know that Daisy wasn't just a pet; she was a big part of your life. She was there with you always attentive, loving, and ready to do whatever you wanted. Special dogs are rare but you were fortunate to find her, and Daisy was lucky to have you as her loving owner."
"Lost my Tippy after 17 years. It's been four years and I still expect to see her. They become such a big part of our lives."
"We experienced the same heartache. They ARE family. So sorry, but I know Daisy is running like a pup with lots of friends to play with."
It's cruel that a pet's life expectancy is a fraction of a human's. We become so attached to them. They are so loyal.
Daisy was patient and kind. And oh so cute.
Joe Buie is news editor for the Tyler Morning Telegraph. YES! is always looking for columns. Send them to email@example.com