Last year we lost our dog Buddy to cancer, something we've been preparing for since he was diagnosed as terminal over the summer. I couldn't talk about it at the time, and even now I really don't want to, but this is part of facing our loss. I am very grateful we were given six more months with him, but this was so terribly hard on all of us, especially my daughter, as Buddy was her dog. When it was time, we somehow found the courage to let him go. I did stay with him until the end, and Buddy died peacefully in my arms.
The last time we lost a dog, our Sheltie Missy, we waited three years before we welcomed another into our family (this was mainly because we were in the process of relocating, and had to move three times.) I couldn't do that again to the kids, so after Christmas when they asked if we could look for a new puppy, I started making inquiries.
The result is that we now have this little guy joining the family:
He is too young to leave Mom and come live us right now, but in a few weeks he'll be moving in and we'll all get to know each other. While I'm not really recovered from losing Buddy, and it will take a little more time for me, for the kids' sake I think he would have approved.