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Quite Simple

“It’s quite simple really.”

‘Simple’ is not the word I’d use to describe the scenario about to play out.

Two sets of eyes are upon me. One pair is liquid chocolate, curious. The other is hazel, empathetic despite her sterile description of the situation. She’d explained this to me previously. Now everything is all too real as we stand in the examination room.

“I’ll administer a sedative to start.”

I grasp K-‘s collar tighter, holding her steady as the needle finds its target.

“Take what time you need. Call me when you’re ready.”

I slip down onto the floor, legs crossed, back to a counter. K- nuzzles my arm before sprawling beside me, head resting on my upper thigh.

I stroke her head gently, tracing the two creamy brown patches above her eyes. Almost ten, she retains a gorgeous, puppy-like profile.

She snorts, relaxed. A cool, wet nose finds my other hand, encouraging me to refocus attention on her ears.

I talk to her softly, recalling how she stood out from among four brothers and one sister. I admired her spirit. She rough-housed with her siblings before tumbling across the grass, eager to explore. She was an independent little bitch, which bode well for our future relationship.

We rest entwined for ten minutes. The clock silently yet sternly reminds me that the veterinarian soon must close her doors for the evening.

“We’re ready.” I force myself to spit out the dreaded words


“Hold her paw.”

I grasp the same appendage that thousands of times has been offered to me voluntarily. K- gazes at me without rancor, a slight twitch her only response to the second needle.

“Stay as long as you need to.”

My tears accompany the drop of her muzzle into my lap. This is how a heart breaks.

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