Large in Body ... Bigger in Heart ...
My Heart Dog ... Precious Jake
11/87 - 01/13/2002

Thanksgiving of 1987, I had the best thanksgiving present I could ever have received in my life ... seven beautiful puppies. All healthy, all a gift from their Mom Trudy... my first Akita. They were German Shepherd/Akita mixed. Perfect in my eyes. I would grow to love them all ... but there was a special one. My big boy Jake. His presence and spirit were stronger than all the others. The first to greet me ... the last to kiss me goodnight. It was Jake and his sister CK that I chose to keep as my own.

Jake and I bonded in heart on the day he was born. That bond grew larger and stronger each and every day of his life. He lived to be fourteen years and two months. If I could, I would have kept him with me forever.

Jake and I were more than a dog and his owner. We were two souls who loved each other completely. "My heart dog,Ē as I always told him. I could not have loved my big boy more -- it just wasn't possible. No obedience classes were ever needed with Jake. If I told Jake to sit, he sat. If I told him to stay, he stayed. We knew each otherís thoughts and felt each otherís love completely. Jake was always there to take my tears away. He kept me from being lonely and protected me with his deep devotion and love. I know in my heart that Jake would have protected me with his life if need be. With my boy Jake around I was never afraid: He kept the fear away. His love for me was that strong. I never doubted his love, nor did he mine. He trusted me completely.

I had made Jake a promise: one day, if he ever became disabled, in pain, or could no longer walk, I would end his life with the dignity he deserved. I prayed each day that I would never have to make that decision.

Jake had been having trouble with arthritis and walking for three years. I did everything I could to make him comfortable, to keep him up and walking and to hold on to him as long as God would let me. Each night I prayed ... God please, just one more year ... then one more month Ö and finally, the inevitable happened. Jake fell and could not get up. He was in pain. For a week I tried everything to help him recover. Even sleeping outside with Jake, when he could not get up to walk into the house. It was the middle of winter. I did not care. With a blanket and pillow, I slept by my baby boy ... holding him, smelling his scent, willing my love to heal him. It was not to be.

The last ride Jake and I took together, I kept assuring him, "Mom is just going to get you some help." Jake could no longer walk and was in such pain. He was shaking and afraid. I had never seen fear in my big boy before. As they sedated him for his x-rays, I kissed him and said, "its OK boy ... Mom is here. Don't worry, I love you Jake." When the vet came in and told me no chance of recovery, you would never walk again: I did not have the courage to wake you up to say goodbye. Instead, I told them to let you go while you were sleeping. I did not want to put you through anymore. I also knew, if I had let them wake you up; that I would not be able to let you go. You see, without you, sweet Jake, I really am not that strong. I held you close and you took your last breath. I hope you felt my love, and knew, I was keeping my promise to you.

Jake, part of me died with you that day, and the tears and pain in my heart have not lessened. It was Jan. 13, 2002 and the pain is as deep in my heart today as that day. I miss you Jake. I think the pain will remain in my heart until the day I take my last breath and we can be together again. I only hope, with all my heart and soul, you still feel my love and that you know that mama only did what she had promised. I let you die with the dignity you deserved.

Tomorrow is another day without you. I never imagined how lonely and empty my heart and soul would be without you here. I hope you are strong and are pain free. My soul and spirit run with yours and I pray always that you will come in my dreams and let me know you are OK.

Always know sweet Jake, no dog could have been loved more. No dog can ever fill your big paws or take your place in my heart. You are and will always remain my heart dog...my baby boy.

Loved and missed forever by his human mom and sister CK.

--Pat



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