My Buster was born approximately October 1999, and joined God in Heaven on March 21, 2012.

Buster was one of four who showed up at my house the weekend after Thanksgiving, 1999. I lived in Austin, TX at the time, and I’d been out of town. The next morning, my roommates informed me they’d found puppies in a box at the stop sign adjacent to my corner lot. As soon as I spotted the puppies, I went to the store and got some puppy food, flea soap, flea collars, rawhide chews, and treats.

I realized I could only keep one, although they were all so beautiful. I resolved to find homes for each and everyone of them, and that’s what I did. I decided to keep the tiny male, who had more spunk than the others. I knew instantly that he was the one for me. I named him – you guessed it – Buster.

As soon as I knew he was mine, I took him to the vet for a complete checkup. Buster was my constant walk, play, love, and sleep companion for 12 1/2 years, and one couldn’t ask for a better one. Everyone whoever met Buster loved him immediately, and I happened to be crazy about him.

Buster was Super-Smart, too. He understood basic commands with no formal training, just a mix of love, patience, and exercise. After I lost my job, and had to move in with family, Buster adjusted with characteristic aplomb. It didn’t seem to matter. No matter what challenges we faced, surgeries, on me and Buster, Buster only needed to know I loved him, and everything would be ok. I did everything I could to give him a good life. Because the place we moved to had thru traffic, where some drove needlessly fast, I tried to keep Buster safer my keeping him on the property. By letting him out on the yard, and letting him check out passersby and pedestrians, Buster kept running around, and active. In later years, Buster slowed down, and injuries and aging on both of us slowed us down even more. But no matter how bad a day I had, I always knew I had Buster, and Buster would always look at me like he hadn’t seen me in months.

After 12 1/2 wonderful, happy years, Buster had a stroke. He couldn’t stand on his rear legs. At the time I didn’t recognize the symptoms, and to me, it appeared to be simple lameness, as that was our history. But Buster also lost bathroom functions, and as he began to deteriorate, I took him to an emergency vet. The news was grim – very grim. Buster likely would not survive the night. I made a promise to myself long ago that, no matter the personal cost to me, I would never let my Angel suffer. So I did what I had to do, and as I was crying, holding my baby, and cradling his face and paws in my hands, and planting kisses all over him, the vet quietly injected him with first, anesthetic, and then the final injection, my Buster died quietly in my arms. I thought I would go mad with grief. At night, I still find myself looking for Buster. I used to call to him, have him lie down with me, and kiss him on the snout while I would cradle his head in my hands. Buster would tolerate me, and then we would lie together until the morning. Of course my Angel is gone, and I usually cry a little, and pray a lot, for the day when I get to see my baby again, and we meet at the Rainbow Bridge.

I never knew my heart could experience so much anguish, so much grief. My baby was an Angel on Earth, and now he’s an Angel in Heaven. Until we meet in Heaven, my Angel. I loved you more than my life, my love. Always will.

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