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Until you fade away

The problem with dogs is that it feels as though they were always there. And we kid ourselves that they always will be.

Where it all began

I remember the day you came home like it was yesterday. And yet, it seems like a lifetime ago. You trotted in, sniffed around and curled up happily on your bed. They said not to let you off the lead for a few weeks. They thought you would run off as you were still getting used to your new environment. But I knew they were wrong.

You were so attached to me, we let you off the lead that first day and you ran straight to my side. It feels like you’ve never left.

So much has changed since then. Other pets have come and gone, we’ve moved house, got married, had children. There have been amazing times and terrible times and sometimes, nobody was there for me.

Except for you. Trotting along beside me or curled up happily in your bed, just like you always were. Just like you always will be, until you fade away. To be replaced by an empty space. A void. A silence. The one who was always there.

And now…

And now, you are a little slower. A little grey around the muzzle and your trot has turned to a laboured walk. You don’t hear me when I call. You don’t see as well as you used to. But you are still there, just like you always were.

Twice a day we walk together. Sometimes alone, sometimes with company. We leave the house and walk up the road. You nuzzle my hand and jump slightly to let me know how happy you are to be with me. Sometimes you play for a moment with the other dog or chase a ball. But usually you plod slowly, breaking into a trot only to run to my side. Just like you always did.

But with each walk, you are a little slower. Each time you curl up in your bed, you stay a little longer. With every day, you are fading. Slowly but visibly. Because your life is so short. And yet, you live in the moment. Loving fully, devoting yourself completely. Fading slowly.

The problem with dogs is that it feels as though they were always there. And we kid ourselves that they always will be.

Until you fade away

And when you can fade no more and your time is come, I will be there. By your side, where I’ve always been. Loving you until you fade away. Because you were there when nobody else was. And in your hour of need, I’ll be there too.

And then, life will go on. And when the dark times come as they must, I will look back fondly on the wonderful years when you were by my side. Totally devoted and unfailingly there. Like you always were.

The problem with dogs is that it feels as though they were always there. And we kid ourselves that they always will be.



  1. May 17, 2017 / 7:25 am

    Beautiful. I can’t say much more. Xxx

  2. Zara Lonsdale
    May 17, 2017 / 7:41 am

    I’m crying on a bus because this was so beautifully written gosh. Dogs are so precious and I feel like I’m reliving the loss of my first all over again. Xx

    • May 18, 2017 / 6:31 am

      Aww so sorry to make you cry on the bus! They really are precious.

  3. May 17, 2017 / 10:57 am

    Oh that made me well up, what a special bond you have. Unless you own dogs you just don’t understand that they are part of the family.

    • May 18, 2017 / 6:30 am

      Thank you Laura, they really are part of the family.

  4. May 17, 2017 / 11:40 am

    What a beautiful post! This brought a tear to my eye. It makes me, a complete non-dog person, understand why people have dogs.

    • May 18, 2017 / 6:29 am

      Thank you Sarah. They really are good company.

  5. msedollyp
    May 17, 2017 / 12:07 pm

    so beautifully written, crying now! Hope writing this helps you when the time comes, and that there is no pain for your pooch x

    • May 18, 2017 / 6:28 am

      Aww I’m sorry. And I hope that too. But fingers crossed he has a good while left before that.

  6. May 17, 2017 / 8:38 pm

    Oh 🙁 this is so sad! So beautifully written. They are so much of the family that we support them like they always have us.

  7. May 17, 2017 / 10:22 pm

    Such a beautiful post. Such an important part of a family, dogs! I had two as a child and still miss them both dearly. When my boys are a little older, I’ll get them a dog too. Feels like such an important addition t the family to me.

    • May 18, 2017 / 6:26 am

      Thank you Stacey. Isn’t it funny how our childhood pets stay with us? I was thinking about my childhood cat only yesterday.

  8. May 18, 2017 / 5:04 am

    Oh Nat, this post is lovely. I have a lump in my throat and really don’t know what to write. The fading is a natural part of growing older, for all of us, but that doesn’t make it any easier to accept. Our dogs may fade, but the memory of them doesn’t. I hope Pluto (did I get that right?) fades slowly away, being there for them at the end is the big price we pay for their loyalty as each and every time they take a little bit of our heart.

    Big hugs.


    • May 18, 2017 / 6:25 am

      Thank you Debbie. I’m hoping he has a good while left yet but he is getting visibly older each day.

  9. May 19, 2017 / 5:07 am

    I knew as soon as I started reading this it was a mistake. It is lovely but I’m sat here crying 🙁 I’m dreading my dog going. I will cuddle her tighter today xx

  10. May 24, 2017 / 8:17 am

    I’ve never had a dog, in all about cats. But mainly because I feel dogsbare more hard work as they are more reliant and dependant on you. As a result I can easily see how they become a member of the family and make it utterly heartbreaking when they leave you. It’s sounds like you have given your pooch a beautiful life.

    Such a sad post but a very special commemoration.

  11. May 26, 2017 / 10:38 pm

    Oh this is so lovely Nat. Dogs really are such a key part of the family aren’t they? Some beautiful memories you have here of your pup. X

  12. June 11, 2017 / 5:42 pm

    Beautiful. I was almost too scared to read it without grabbing a tissue! You know what I’m like.

    • June 11, 2017 / 9:35 pm

      Haha sorry! He’s doing well at the moment but he’s showing his age now, he falls over quite a lot and it’s quite sad to see 🙁

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