“I am sorry I am so weak”, she choked out in a cracked voice with tears streaming down her face.
“Weak?”, I replied.
“Yes, weak, it’s just I love so hard”, she explained. “Weak, NEVER! You are strong, what you did today took strength, you gave a living being every ounce of your love, attention and strength until he drew his last breath. You filled his last moments with cuddles, smiles, kisses, pets and soft words of encouragement, promises of love for the rest of his life.”, I belted back at her. “What you did today is not being weak. The person who allowed that young dog to live his short life suffering, they are weak, they are the cowards. They don’t know what it means to love hard. Do you know who knows what it’s like to love hard? That precious pup who we named Walter Warrior. You showed him what it means to love hard.”
Walter lived in the moment and his last moments were of you loving, comforting and encouraging him. This is how we wanted Walter to leave this earthly plane, knowing in his heart, he was loved, safe and had people pulling for him. To Walter as he drifted off, he thought he had lived the best life ever all to you filling his last moments with love. Walter didn’t die alone in a shelter or die in his kennel overnight battling for his life, he died with you whispering to him, holding his paw and stroking his fur. He went gently into the night because you were not weak, but strong. So when you look in the mirror and you recall his sweet kisses and gentle eyes, you tell yourself, “I was Walter Warrior’s Hero”. K9 Enrichment Initiative is sad to announce that Walter Warrior (CACC-Elton) was guided to his peace after the doctors discovered not only did he has a prolapsed rectum, but the tissue itself was torn, not repairable. Walter passed on at 7:43pm this evening. I will not focus on the loss, but celebrate his life, the life he shared with us during that hour long drive, the minutes before he went into the operating room and the moments before he left us. Today is a reminder that we do make a difference in more ways than one. We gave Walter a chance by pulling him from death in the shelter to an awaiting hospital to provide care. We gave the city shelter employee hope that one more dog would make it out and have a chance. We renewed our faith in our own humanity, our empathy and our ability to love hard no matter the length of time. Walter Warrior earned his angel wings and K9 Enrichment Initiative’s Volunteer/Foster Mom earned her rescue stripes. Wear them proudly Robin, you made a difference that required great strength. Walter and I greatly appreciate your gift.
“If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever, Run Free, Walter”