I first saw him at Petco during an adoption event in 2009. I agreed to walk him around the store while we shopped. The people from the Humane Society obviously know a sucker when they see one.
I called him puppy instead of Quiggly thinking that would make it easier to part with him when I was finished shopping.
I made it halfway around the store before starting to cry and handing him over to my then fiancee so I could wait in the car.
It seemed like forever before he joined me outside, opening the door and unceremoniously dropping the wiggling pup in my lap. All he would say is “I hate to see you cry”. We already had three dogs so this guy made four. He had been picked up as a stray in Valley, Alabama. The vet said he appeared to be between 1 and 3 years old. He very quickly became part of the existing pack. He had a sweet temperament and loved to chase birds, squirrels and chipmunks.
When my husband and I later divorced, Quiggly came with me and his sisters Zoey and Bella . A few years later, Quiggly comforted me all night , snuggling up under my chin after Zoey passed unexpectedly.
Later, he and Bella moved to the country with me and his new brother, Rufus. As the oldest Quiggly was the natural to be pack leader but he was so easy going that he let Rufus take over the job. He was there when Bella’s boy came home from the Marine Corps and went to live with him. He was there when I added big brothers Salem and Rylee , Bandit the stray dumped off at work and then Zoey 2.0 who came from a co-worker. He never fussed at the rapidly growing pack but he did make it clear that cats were out of the question.
He spent nine wonderful years as a member of our family. He was injured by an unknown animal during the night or early morning today. I rushed him to the emergency vet. She said that he had what is called flail chest. His ribs were broken and the muscle around them detached in such a large area that he would not survive. She gave me the option to try surgery but made it clear what the chances were.
I sat alone in the exam room with him. He had been given pain medicine but would still raise his head as I cried and talked to him. It took me about an hour and a half to make the difficult decision. I kissed and loved on him and let the vet know I was as ready as I could be. I held him, my face right on his, kissing his ears, telling him he was a good boy and when he got to heaven to find the five year old daughter of my friend who passed from childhood cancer. I told him he would be her pup now and I would see him again someday. He went very quickly and peacefully. I kissed him once more and then let the vet take him to prepare him to come home with me.
They made an impression of his paw, which they will be sending me soon. I rode home with tears in my eyes and my hand laying on the wrapped package beside me which was slowly losing his body heat.
At home, my son, his fiancee and my granddaughter were waiting. My son prepared a grave under the biggest tree in my yard and we laid my sweet boy to rest.
I wrapped him in a plaid blanket and put his favorite toy beside him. We covered the grave with dirt and then pea gravel. I fashioned a cross with his name and the year then placed some flowers from my yard on the rocks.
Today was so very difficult. I know he is in a better place but I already miss his sweet face. His collar is hanging from a shelf in the living room until I get his paw print and can make a fitting memorial.
Quiggly, you are such a good boy. You are not just a dog, you are my sweet boy and I will miss you so much. I love you! 🐾
Thank you for letting me share him with you.