Charlie was the quintessential dog. Our oldest son, who was 14 years old at the time, chose him from a litter of 10 adorable, fluffy Newfoundland puppies. Our youngest child was 4 months old at the time, and 6 months old when Charlie came home to live with us. We have six children altogether, and Charlie was their treasured playmate and dear friend for the past 9.5 years.
My husband had never had a dog before, and he and Charlie had a very special bond. We all had our own special bonds with Charlie. He had the biggest heart of any dog I’ve known. Charlie was the first dog we loved together as a family.
We wish we could have had Charlie forever, but we feel grateful to have had him for 9.5 years. He loved us unconditionally, spent his days inside with us, taking car rides with us, and seeing other doggy friends in the neighborhood and in the dog park. He was happy to have a new buddy last fall when Ludo (German Shepherd puppy) joined the family. Charlie did a great job training Ludo, but we saw how very tired he was, and how much he was struggling this fall. He had been taking pain meds for about a year already, before we knew his time in this world was coming to an end.
Our home flooded in September, and Charlie had to be rescued (along with the rest of us) by boat. He had to be lifted into the boat, all 150 pounds of him — and had to adjust to staying with dear (dog loving!) friends for two weeks. We were able to get him back home and have another 6 weeks of him at home before he passed.
We will never forget Charlie. He will live on in our hearts forever. And our faith is strong! God is love, and God knows what we need to be happy. I firmly believe we will see and know Charlie again in the next life. His spirit was so beautiful and strong. He will welcome us home when we join him “someday.” We are thankful to have been blessed with such an amazing and loving furry friend. St. Francis, watch out for Charlie! He’ll be your faithful friend forever.