This has been a hard month for Ash. It was one year ago that he lost his best friend, Tess. I know it’s on his mind even though he can’t bring himself to talk about it.
For months there had been something not quite right with Tess. Mom took her to four different vets but nobody had the answer. When the vets finally figured it out it was too late to save her.
It was hard for all of us when Tess died. She was still a young dog and full of swagger. She and Ash were so close. They used to spend hours sharing secrets and barking at shadows.
Tess barely had time to say her good-byes before the vet came to our house to help her across the bridge.
Ash was beside himself with grief. Every night for a week he dug under the fence and ran into the ravine where he played as a boy. He said he had to be alone in case Tess wanted to talk to him.
Ash grieved hard for a long time. He was sad and mad and crazy all at the same time. He wouldn’t let mom out of his sight, but then he’d hear the coyotes and run off to the ravine.
One day I heard Ash tell mom he wanted to raise a puppy. He said the pack needed a new soul and he wanted to teach a puppy the way his beloved Aunt Codie taught him.
Ash told mom he was still young enough to put up with a puppy and they could have lots of fun together. Then he burst into tears and told mom how lonely he was without Tess. Two months later we brought the puppy home and Ash isn’t lonely any longer. There’s more to this story, but for now this picture says it all.