Tuesday, May 27, 2008

In remembrance of Spike...

Just about 18 and a half years ago, Jeff walked into an animal rescue center and came out with a spunky little guy who quickly took on the title of Spike. With a few types of breeds in him, no one could really figure out what exactly this lucky pup was, but most vets we have seen along the way say he had a feisty piece of Jack Russel Terrier in him.

I've only been graced with his presence for a little over 9 years now and I feel so lucky to have had that time to get to know him and his quirky ideas of fun. Spike loved to wander around in the yard, taking bites here and there from any long blades of grass that he walked past, or if he was feeling especially lazy, he enjoyed sprawling himself out to soak up the rays from the sun.

Even though he loved the sun, he had the best time in the snow - besides rolling around and getting completely soaked, you could always count on him to run up to a snow bank and take a big bite out of it.

One of the first things I noticed about him when he was romping around outside was that he wouldn't run like other dogs as his back legs seemed to work together and he would hop along like a bunny - so cute!

While Spike loved the outdoors, the time he had the most fun was when he and Jeff would curl up on the couch or bed and watch some TV or just take a little snooze.

Spike was the official pup tester of our many treats that we baked. Max did have a little input, but Spike being the older brother, he got first say on which treats were to be made again. Here are the boys before digging into one of their favorite goodies.

He was especially a fan of the Pupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting - we cut them into quarters and they would last quite awhile.

While we were living in Phoenix, Spike and Max loved licking up some homemade peanut butter frosty paws (basically yogurt blended with peanut butter and frozen) that we made - Max would often to try sneak and steal a bite, but Spike would have no part in it.

Speaking of Phoenix, Spike put up with many moves and very long car rides over the years. He got to see quite a lot of the United States as he went from Maryland to New Jersey, Jersey to Minneapolis, Minneapolis to Phoenix, Phoenix back to Maryland and finally back to Minneapolis. He never complained about the car rides, but would occasionally get tired of Miss Kitty meowing and put his head on her cage to calm her down.

Unfortunately, Spike had developed a mass in a gland below his ear and around his jaw area within the past few months. He seemed to be doing okay, but the past couple of days proved otherwise and after a very emotional morning, we had come to the decision that it was time for us to release our hold on him today and let him be at peace without going through any suffering.

We spent some time outside with him this morning, playing and letting him roam around in his playground one last time.

Here is Spike with his favorite blanket in his comfortable bed that he slept in every night. He spent many, many hours lounging around in bed as he felt safe and content there.

We will never forget how wonderful you made our lives and you will be in our thoughts forever. We love you buddy and hope you meet some new friends to play with on the other side.

82 comments:

  1. That was a beautiful tribute. Pets are such a special part of our lives, and it's so hard to let go, but I'm so glad you gave Spike such a wonderful home. It sounds like he had a pretty fantastic life with you.

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  2. Oh dear, how sad to lose such a wonderful friend. Looks like he had a wonderful life with you two though. Sorry for your loss.

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  3. Sounds like it was a tie as to who got more out of the relationship! He will find many friends over the Rainbow Bridge!

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  4. I am so sorry for your loss,Joe and Jeff. It is so touching to read the beautiful words which honored your pet. It will be hard to move on for a while, but the other pets willl need you and I am sure they would love a "new brother" in time.

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  5. I'm so sorry for you and Jeff. We sent Brandy over the Rainbow Bridge on Sunday. I hope she and Spike can find their way together.

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  6. I am so very sorry. What a wonderful life he led, and what a lucky pup to have both of you as his parents. I know you are hurting. My dog is part of our life and world, not just a dog..but family. I made me tear up thinking about loosing my Lola reading this.
    I am sorry, hoping for peace and comfort in this time.

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  7. Joe, I'm so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your photos and stories - it sounds like Spike had a beautiful life.

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  8. Joe and Jeff - My deepest heartfelt thoughts go to both of you in the loss of Spike. Your tribute was awesome...Even though it was sad to know that he had passed - you showed such a beautiful celebration of his life. You both were lucky to have him in your lives as he was to have you in his.

    May his memories bring you comfort!

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  9. I'm so sorry about your loss. As a pet lover and dog owner, I feel for you.

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  10. A very beautiful and moving post. Spike had a long and happy life with you. You gave him a series of wonderful homes, and had the strength to make the hard decision when the time came. Thank you for sharing this tribute with us.

    I'm a longtime lurker, first-time poster. I've made many of your recipes and enjoyed your photos (especially the ones of the furry members of the family). I look forward to reading your blog every day. Thank you.

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  11. Ah, geez, had to come out of lurkdom for this. Bless Spike and the wonderful life he had with you and your partner. I hope happy memories eventually trump the sadness you must feel. All the best to your family.

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  12. He was a lucky dog. When I die, I'd like to come back as your dog! It was very moving to read about Spike.

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  13. Oh Joe, my heart is breaking for you and Jeff. To me, losing a pet is one of the very biggest bumps in the road.....

    Quinn

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  14. Joe and Jeff - I am so, so sorry to hear about Spike. It is so hard to lose a member of the family like that. Thank you for sharing your lives with us.

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  15. i am so sorry for your loss... Pets touch a special part in each of us and I hope you guys and max find peace and comfort.

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  16. (((Jeff and Joe)))

    I'm so very, very sorry. Our furry friends are never with us as long as we'd like them to be.

    I've got a 16 year old here, and I know our time is nearly up. It will be so hard.

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  17. Awww...I just wanted to add my voice to the others and say that was a lovely tribute and I know that Spike will be missed. I am so sorry. He will live on in your memories and will always be dearly remembered!

    Courtney

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  18. Spike was a lucky dog to have people who loved him enough to let him go with peace and dignity. In sympathy...

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  19. My deepest sympathies for your loss. It sounds like Spike had a wonderful and fulfilling life, right down to the last day.

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  20. I never thought a food blog would make me cry!! I'm so sorry for your loss :(

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  21. Kathy(at)cats4me@frontiernet.net5/27/2008 08:11:00 PM

    Please know that we too have been there, and know that a lot of love is being sent your way today. Spike was adorable, and the days ahead will be hard, but you have lovely pictures and beautiful memories of such a precious little baby.
    So glad that Spike had such a loving home with the two of you. Your happy times with him will sustain you, and he will always live in your hearts.

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  22. God bless Spike, and all of you. I'm glad you won't have to worry about how he is feeling, and he won't be in any pain or suffering.

    It does suck though, doesn't it?

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  23. My heartfelt condolences to you and Jeff. It is not easy to let them go, but in many ways it is our gift to them. That's what helped me let go of our first dog. Peace & Strength.
    Tracey

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  24. My heart goes out to both of you as you deal with your loss. Losing a beloved pet is one of the hardest things that I have ever been through and unfortunately I have been there twice this year. Hopefully your fond memories will guide you through the healing process.

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  25. May you, Jeff and your remaining fur baby find comfort in one another.

    I don't know what to say. It has only been 8 months since I lost my Sadie. In February we adopted Velcro. While she is no replacement for Sadie we have started the Velcro era. Velcro, by the way, has been the recipient of several of your pup treats. And she gives each one of them 5 paws.

    It hurts to lose a child.

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  26. Joe and Jeff, I am so sorry to hear the news of Spike's departure. Hugs to you as you get through this difficult time.

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  27. Joe - what a special and loving tribute to Spike. Thank you for sharing him with us.

    My thoughts are with you and Jeff during this very difficult and painful time.

    SandyM

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  28. What a beautiful tribute to a wonderful companion!
    It looks like Spike had the best home he could have, and plus he ate better than many humans! :)
    Hugs to you both, Jeff and Joe, as you move on without your loved Spike.

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  29. Joe and Jeff,
    I am so sorry for your loss. It's never easy to say goodbye to a part of your family. I'm sure Spike knows how much he was loved, and you were all lucky to be in each other lives. My thoughts are with you.

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  30. Ok, you made me cry. Spike had a wonderful life and your tribute to him was touching. Losing a pet is sometimes harder than losing a human member of the family. They give us so much unconditional love and are always there for us.

    I find it especially hard to read about Spike and not think about our own dog, Sophie who just started radiation therapy treatment today for a tumor on her leg. We noticed her lump about the same time Jeff wrote about finding Spikes.

    Give some extra love to Max who's probably as sad as you are.

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  31. I know this was hard for you to write, but you did a beautiful job. Spike had a good life with you two and Max and he will be missed. Jancd

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  32. Joe and Jeff, What a beautiful remembrance of Spike. I'll make one of your Spike-tested treats in his honor.

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  33. I'm so sorry. What a beautiful tribute.

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  34. :( I am so sorry. My doberman had cancer he was 14. So for a loving good bye I got him a steak which says a lot since I don't eat meat. Man it sees like our pets are only here for such a short time. Glad he had your guys to love him!

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  35. I'm so sorry that you and Jeff had to make that very difficult decision. My heart goes out to both of you.

    Sue

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  36. Joe and Jeff - Of the few times we had to baby sit Spike and Max we can think of none that either of those guys gave us anything less than pure joy. We love Max but Spike was our favorite. Spike would love anyone to a fault. Where Max is a good watch dog, Spike was a friend to all. Especially to us. That funny walk, that wagging tail, those sad sad eyes, that voracious appetite for all things good and even the things not so good and that little moan when it was time to go out and fertilize the grass will be with us forever. How good was he? So good that wherever he did his job outside (never inside) the grass is greener. He was missed here whenever you took him home. And now he will never come back but he will never be forgotten.

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  37. So sorry Joe. I'm with you in this sad moment of your life.

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  38. You're brave and loving dog parents. At the same time that I cry for your loss, I laugh and smile for the love you give to your pets, and for what the bring to your lives. Thank you for sharing them with us!

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  39. I'm so sorry for your loss.
    I'm sure he's happy...and I'm sure he's around you guys.

    It's so hard losing a pet. They really are like family.
    Take care.

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  40. That's terrible lads.
    You did your buddy justice in a lovely story.
    Hang in there.

    Eric
    The Netherlands

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  41. I'm sorry to hear about your loss... Spike was a very cute dog! Thanks for the beautiful post!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  42. Honestly, I'm not a dog lover but I am very touched and really sorry for your loss...

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  43. I'm sorry to hear about Spike, I know that these days are the saddest of your life, to lose a little member of the family. Imagine he is in heaven playing with other dogs.I'm telling you this because a week ago my pekingese Sissy died.

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  44. OK, I just had my morning cry ... brought back memories of our Darby a couple of years ago. It's hard to lose a dog ... I feel for you guys.

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  45. Jeff and Joe,

    Me, too, I must come out of lurking to say that I was very moved by your tribute to Spike. I'm sure that was a terrible decision to have to make but you honored Spike by choosing as you did.

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  46. So sorry to hear about Spike, but it sounds like you all enjoyed your time together and lived greatly. Always hard losing someone you love so dearly!

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  47. Joe and Jeff,

    What a beautiful tribute to a obviously wonderful companion. My husband and I adopted a pup a few years ago and we can't possibly be anymore in love with him. As they say, "Dogs are not our whole life, but they certainly make our lives whole!"

    Love and prayers,
    Meredith

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  48. Hi,

    I visit your blog often but I never manifested my presence until today. Your story really touched me. I love my pets so much, they are my life! I can only imagine the pain of losing such a friend. I am versy sorry for your loss.

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  49. This brought tears to my eyes. We had to put our family dog to sleep two years ago. It was a very hard on us all. Morbid maybe, but I have his ashes and keep them near my bedside table. He'll always have a special place in my heart.

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  50. I apologize - I meant to add that my heart goes out to the both of you. Just was caught up in the emotion. I'm very sorry for your loss. :(

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  51. I'm sorry to hear about Spike, Joe. It sounds like he had a wonderful life with you guys.

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  52. I'm so sorry for your loss. I can't imagine how difficult that day will be when one of our two pups has to leave us. A beautiful tribute to a beautiful dog!

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  53. Anne, Edinburgh5/28/2008 02:39:00 PM

    I am so sorry for your loss Joe and Jeff - Spike had a good life with you and he will leave a space in your heart. Your tribute to him was wonderful. There is no such thing as "just a dog" - they are friends and companions for life. My thoughts are with you both.

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  54. Joe and Jeff,
    I'm so sorry for your loss. The tribute was lovely and my thoughts are with you.

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  55. I'm so sorry. He must have been very well loved and taken care of to make it 18 long years. I hope Max is okay.

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  56. You are all so blessed to have had each other in your lives. This was a beautiful tribute to Spike. Thank you for sharing him with us.

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  57. My thoughts go out to you in remembrance of Spike. He was so very loved. I hope that Max is doing ok. I know you both are there for him.

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  58. Joe and Jeff,

    What a beautifull tribute to your fuzzy buddy. I am greatly saddened to hear of your loss and will miss his pictures.

    May Spike find his next journey as rewarding as the one he just left.

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  59. Pets will always hold a special place in our hearts...Spike has now found his spot...it hurts and aches at the present, yet will be full of love in time to come.

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  60. May he rest in peace. Thanks for sharing his story, photos and treats with us.

    Hugs to you both,
    Paz

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  61. I just commented over at Jeff's blog but wanted to comment here as well but it's hard to type with tears in my eyes! The photos are wonderful and Spike was lucky to have you two take care of him!

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  62. Joe & Jeff,
    I read your blog daily and have enjoyed your posts greatly but have never written to say so. Spike was a beautiful dog and a wonderful member of your family. I enjoyed all of the tales/tails of his life and am glad you share your life with all of your virtual friends.

    What a lovely tribute to him. Give big hugs to Max. I'm so sorry for your loss.

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  63. Oh sweetie.

    Hugs. And lots of them.

    You were lucky to find one another and enriched each others' lives.

    j

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  64. Joe and Jeff, I'm so sorry! I had to stop reading this at work, because the tears just flowed. Even though I never got to meet Spike, just reading about him and hearing stories from Jeff, I know he was a special friend. He certainly lived a full and happy life...how could he not with you and Jeff as his parents. Your tribute was beautiful and he will certainly not be forgotten. You guys are the best and I know he's missing you as much as you miss him.

    Thinking of you,
    Ching

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  65. Joe and Jeff, sorry for your lost. Pets are truly special part of our lives. Thank you for sharing your story, it was heartfelt.

    JD

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  66. You don't know me, but I've been reading and enjoying your blog for about a year now.

    Your recipes are fantastic, but your tribue here, pardon the pun, takes the cake.

    My dog is my baby, and I know how you feel. I'm glad you enjoyed your time with him so much, and I know he was lucky pup to have gotten so much quality time with you.

    Cheers to Spike :)

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  67. I'm so sorry, Joe & Jeff, to read about the passing of Spike. I've been away for a few days and am just now catching up. I know what a tremendous loss this is as I went through this a few years ago. I know he had a great life with you guys. I'm so sorry for your loss.
    Val

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  68. I'm so sorry to hear about Spike. The tribute was great and showed how much he was loved and a part of your lives. It reminded me so much of not only our most recent loss a few years ago of Brenda our adopted dog from our daughter but also our long time friend Buster that we raised from a 4 wk old pup til he passed 13 years later on the 4th of July. Spike is now over the Rainbow and enjoying those occasional bites of grass. HUGS to you, Jeff and Max

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  69. We have had entirely to much of this on the BB lately. I am so sorry for you both. What a wonderful tribute you provided, Joe, it left me in tears.

    All of this reminds me to hug my little Cody just a little harder each day...

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  70. Joe & Jeff,
    We were sorry sorry to hear of your loss. We know how hard it is to love a pet that you love so dearly.
    I believe spike knew how much you all loved him & he will be watching over you all.

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  71. So sorry to hear about Spike! Been reading your blog for a few months and am often inspired with all your yummy food. Actually just made the caramel cinnamon swirl cookies--they are in the freezer.
    Thanks for the inspiration with your great tribute to your dog and with your food!
    Katrina

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  72. Oh Joe... I'm so sorry. I've been visiting your blog for a short while but I could notice your love for your dogs. I know that at this moment I just can send you and Jeff a word of support and tell you that in every picture your Spike looks a really happy dog!

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  73. Joe,

    I am so sorry for your, Jeff's and Max's loss. (((Hugs))) to you all during this sad time.

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  74. Thank you all for your words and support - it has been like a warm blanket to help us get through this difficult time.

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  75. Hi Joe, I just saw this post today. I'm sitting here, reading this tears streaming down my face and Oliver and Harley sleep next to me on their Papasan chair. Pets are such comforts in our lives and it breaks my heart that you just lost yours. 18 1/2 is a really, really long life for a dog. I just hope mine live as long as Spike!!

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  76. Joe & Jeff--so sorry to read about Spike. Good friends are difficult to let go. You provided a great life for him.

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  77. I've got a huge soft spot in my heart for dogs, and cats, and having been through the loss of one of each over the last couple of years, my heart goes out to you. It doesn't matter how long they lived or anything, just that they're now gone. Just be happy in the fact that you gave him a good place to be and good people to be with while he was her.

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  78. Joe & Jeff: I'm so very sorry for your loss. Spike was quite obviously a much loved member of your family. My thoughts and prayers will be with you during this difficult time and I pray that the memories of the love and life that you shared with Spike will soon help your hearts begin to heal.

    Cheryl (phantomcg on CLBB)

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  79. Ah, guys, I am so, so sorry. It looks like he lucked out into the right house, and had one helluva happy life.

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  80. Jennifer from NYC6/11/2008 10:09:00 AM

    Joe & Jeff,

    Deepest condolences in your loss. Spike looked like a great dog and was so lucky to have you.
    I have enjoyed the photos and stories of both Spike and Max.
    Wishing you well...

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  81. I'm wiping the tears from my eyes after reading about Spike. It's as if I was losing one of my own.

    I can so totally relate as I've lost 3 dogs to disease and old age in my adult life. We have 2 dogs now purposely staggered in age (4 and 10)in hopes of softening that inevitable blow when the time comes for one of them to leave us. They truly are a blessing and we're lucky to have them share their short lives with us.

    Like the others have mentioned - it is obvious Spike had a wonderful home and you both should be proud of that. It's also a gift you gave him by ending any suffering he endured.

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