Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Yesterday was such a sad day for our family.  We had to make the ultimate sacrifice and put our dog to sleep.  She had been our best friend, and companion for the last 10 1/2 years.  She was such a big mush, but boy did she have a great bark! She scared the hell out of our mailman, that's for sure!  She got the paper for us every morning, and sometimes she'd sneak off the property and borrow a paper from one of our neighbors. She'd do anything for food!
Layla Stella By Starlite
November 2, 2000 - June 20, 2011

With permission I would like to share with you a message that I received yesterday.  Through tears, while reading this, I knew that the piece of my heart that went missing yesterday would some day heal.  Reading this message from someone who doesn't really know me, but took the time to write such a wonderful  tribute to my dog, and all other dogs, touched my heart in a big way. I know it will touch your heart too.

Thanks for taking the time and visiting with me today. It means so much to me.

    • Hi Lorraine,

      We haven't met, but I just saw your FB post/album about your beautiful Layla -- I'm so sorry to hear of your loss!

      In my Planet Earth life, I'm Laura Martin Bacon, a Williams-Sonoma writer and lifelong dog lover.

      I lost my almost-15-year-old black lab, Chester, a little over a year ago -- and I still miss him like crazy.

      It’s funny the way a dog can teach you things you need to know about yourself: like when it’s time to explore, to eat, to rest, to love.

      Human life tends to be so complicated and abstract, caught in the tangles of obligations, deadlines and desires. But animal life is simple and immediate – happiness is as close as the nearest tennis ball or bite of hot dog or pool of sunlight. Spending time with the creatures we love seems to bring life into focus, encouraging us to abandon a runaway train of muddled thoughts for the pristine clarity of the moment.

      As you well know, the bond humans have with our dogs is one of the most ancient and purest imaginable — and that loss affects us in a way that’s not like any other.

      The Kalapalo Indians of Brazil have a word that beautifully expresses the singular power of this bond: ifutisu, which seems to describe a particular sort of gentleness, generosity and capacity for genuine intimacy. When we bring a dog into our home, that creature is often with us during our most intimate and unguarded moments.

      Our dogs have seen us in every possible mood, followed us into the bathroom, slept at the foot of our beds, curled up on the kitchen floor as we cook and dream and ponder our past, present and future. And through it all, there is no judgment, no criticism, no betrayal. Only a pure, unconditional acceptance of what the moment holds — and, often, an intuitive understanding of what we need at any particular moment.

      Because they don’t scramble their minds with analysis of their own lives, I believe that a dog can, in some ways, know us better than we know ourselves.

      And somehow, they communicate that knowledge by leading us to the places inside ourselves where we’ve always been afraid to go. Their natural goodness creates an alchemy that transforms us in the ways we need most.

      I believe that, wherever their spirits choose to soar, Layla and Chester are savoring the glorious freedom that lies just beyond this life — and that their wisdom and love will endure in our hearts forever.

      Please know that you're in my thoughts!

      All the best,


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