On Saturday my sister’s dog passed away. He was 15, so it wasn’t a complete surprise, but I don’t think anyone expected that by the end of the weekend he would no longer be here. When her other dog Jake passed away, I wrote a tribute to him, so I wanted to do the same for little Wolf.
I tear up each time I say your name and now, writing it, I’m crying, because writing to you makes it seem really official. You’re gone. I won’t have a chance to hold you or smell your breath as you lick my nose. I won’t see you curled up in a ball on your bed or feel your sleek body beneath a blanket when I check to see if you’re there. I won’t feel you, warm and solid for such a little guy, on my lap.
Fifteen years ago I met you for the first time. You were just a tiny puppy and I held you in the palm of my hand. You were so quiet and still that I hoped you were still breathing (you were!) and I hoped you would be the dog they would take home. I was so happy when you were! Somehow, I expected you to remember me a couple months later when they brought you home. You didn’t, but I don’t think it took long for the two of us to become buds. I loved visiting them and having a chance to play with you. I loved when they went on vacation and left you with me.
I wasn’t sure about your name when they told me. Wolf. For a tiny little doxie. But Wolf turned out to be the perfect name for you. What you lacked in size, you made up for in spunk and fearlessness. Your personality was larger than life.
I was asked what one of my favorite memories of you is. The first time I met you is definitely one, but as I tried to think of another so many went through my mind. I have 15 years worth of memories with you, little guy. How can I choose a fave? But a memorable one–one that I think of often–came to mind. It always makes me giggle. I was sitting on the couch eating a sandwich and at one point I took a bite and saw you taking a bite of the other end.
And then there was the time that I took Little One to her new vet and when I was asked how I heard about their clinic I said, “My sister brings her dog here.” They asked what your name was and I said, “He’s a miniature dachshund. His name is Wolf…” and I was about to say your last name, but the vet smiled and nodded. “Oh yeah, I know Wolf.”
You weren’t always a fan of new people, you had your people and they were all you needed. And those who were lucky enough to be on your list of humans… you loved them deeply.
So thank you, sweet Wolf, for being a wonderful companion to my sister. Thank you for following suit with my niece. Thank you for being a constant and faithful presence for their family for the last fifteen years. And thank you for being there for the rest of us too. It was a joy to watch you grow. You were a source of comfort, a fun pup to play with, and the best “canine nephew” that I could ask for.
I love you and I’ll miss you.
ps – Wolf took over the blog one day and wrote for an edition of Little One’s Adventures.