Molly, the sweet old family dog of the Arizona branch of the Walker clan, is dying.
She's 12 years old, so that isn't completely unexpected. But the speed of the disease that in just a couple weeks has left her half-blind, barely able to walk and covered with malignant lumps, has left us in a state of shock.
Blood and tissue tests show that she's suffering from a combination of pancreatitis and cancer. In other words, there's no hope. All we can do is try to keep her comfortable.
This has been a terrible time for pets in our family. As you may recall, a while back, Barney, the family dog of our California branch, died along with the two family cats, Rudy and Scraps. And more recently, Moonie, our granddaughter's beta fish, passed away. What is this, some kind of vendetta against pets in our households?
It's probably best not to dwell too much on that.
What is certain is that tomorrow morning, our wonderful and compassionate veterinarian, Dr. Ann Campbell of Plaza Pet Clinic in Tucson, will come to our house. There, she'll administer the injections that will end Molly's suffering. We'll all be there with Molly, to say goodbye to a gentle, good friend.
All I can think of is what Will Rogers said: "If there are no dogs in heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went."
Goodbye, Molly. It has been a blessing, having you in our lives.