On Friday the 19th of December I had to lay to rest my best friend, aside from my wife and son, and the only employee I ever had. Nikki found me when she was about 11 weeks old the week of Thanksgiving in 1998. I had just dropped our son off at school and took a different street home as I needed to put gas in the truck. As I drove down the road, I spotted an adorable little puppy just off the road all by her lonesome. I gave a little whistle and she came bounding over and hopped in to the truck, sniffed about for a minute or two and promptly curled up for a nap. We put an ad in the paper, but nobody came forward to claim her, so an extraordinary, 16+ year relationship was born.
Nikki loved to go for a morning walk, stopping every 5 or 6 feet and sniffing at the shrubs or just the ground and catching up on all the activity in the neighborhood. After the walk she loved to wander the nursery, rooting out packrats and chasing after rabbits, and after wearing herself out, she would dig out a comfortable spot on the soil pile resting up for more varmint chasing. It is difficult to watch a beloved pet age, and I think we don’t really realize the physical changes they go through until we look at pictures from early on. Nikki had no quit in her , and although her spirit was willing to go on, her body just could not keep up. Making the decision and then carrying through with the process of holding her head in my lap while our longtime vet administered the sedative, and then finally the injection to put Nikki to rest was the most heart wrenching experience I have ever had. I am hoping that writing a bit about her and putting up some pictures serves to be therapeutic for me. Thank you for indulging me on this one.
Run free my sweet girl and have fun playing with all the other dogs. Your spirit lives on in my heart.