In May of 2010, I was a single mother. A senior in college with a night job. I also decided to get a Border Collie puppy. Everyone, literally everyone, thought I was crazy. I named him Jacks and he quickly became my partner. The other half. The other parent. The one that made the house less empty when my son was visiting his father. My hiking partner. My lab partner. My work partner. He lived in my car with me, he lived in my house with me, he went everywhere with me.
He became William’s sibling. His guardian. A shepherd. A mountain dog. A snuggly dog. The best dog.
He was the destroyer of chickens and barn walls, door jambs and floors. He was the breaker of kennels and the escape artist.
Jacks became more than a dog. He is my best friend. My best friend that ever was. He has had more tears shed on his coat by me, he has spent more nights up with me while I nursed a screaming infant, he has spent more amazing time with me than anyone I know. Jacks is the best dog that ever was.
Today I found out he has a fast-moving, acute cancer and that we will be losing him very shortly. At just five years old, this dog has done more, been more places, and loved more than anyone I can think of.
Today we went to the beach and got ice cream and laid on the floor together, me crying and him sighing. He hates it when I cry.
The last days, however long or short they will be, will be the best. I already miss him.
As Syrio Forel said, “There is only one god and his name is death. And there is only one thing we say to death…. Not today.”